By Billy Begas
The House of Representatives will try to finish all the 20 measures identified by the Legislative Executive Development Advisory Council (LEDAC) as priorities before the session of Congress adjourns this month.
Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez said the House has already approved 18 of the 20 LEDAC priority measures as of today, September 20.
The two remaining bills—the Military and Uniformed Personnel Pension System Act, and the Rationalization of Mining Fiscal Regime were already approved on second reading and are set to be approved on third reading next week.
During its July 5 meeting, LEDAC set the approval of all the 20 priority measures before Congress adjourns session in December.
“In sum, the House of Representatives will meet its commitment to approve all 20 priority measures by the end of September, or three months ahead of target,” Romualdez said.
Of the 18 approved measures, the Trabaho Para sa Bayan (National Employment Recovery Strategy) has already been transmitted to Malacañang for the President’s action, while the Automatic Income Classification Act for Local Government Units is being prepared for transmittal to Malacañang.
The proposed Philippine Salt Industry Development Act is currently being deliberated in the bicameral conference committee.
The other bills already approved in the House on third reading were:
1. Amendment to the Build-Operate-Transfer/Public-Private Partnership Act,
2. National Disease Prevention Management Authority
3. Internet Transaction Act/ E-Commerce Law,
4. Health Emergency Auxiliary Reinforcement Team Act,
5. Virology Institute of the Philippines,
6. Instituting a National Citizens Service Training Program,
7. Valuation Reform Bill (Package 3),
8. E-Governance Act/ E-Government Act,
9. Ease of Paying Taxes,
10. Waste-to-Energy Bill,
11. New Philippine Passport Act,
12. Magna Carta of Seafarers,
13. Rightsizing the National Government,
14. Anti-Financial Account Scamming Act (AFASA), and
15. Amendment to the Bank Secrecy Law.
Meanwhile, Romualdez said that seven of the 17 measures President Ferdinand Marcos identified in his recent State of the Nation Address (SONA) were already approved by the House.
Two of these measures are on second reading while the remaining eight are at the committee level.
“We are confident of meeting our self-imposed target of having all these measures approved before we go on our Christmas break,” Romualdez added.
The seven SONA priorities that were already approved by the House are:
1. Automatic Income Classification Act for Local Government Units (ratified by both Chamber)
2. Excise Tax on Single-Use Plastics,
3. VAT on Digital Services,
4. Amendment of the Fisheries Code,
5. Anti-Financial Accounts Scamming Act (AFASA),
6. Ease of Paying Taxes, and
7. The Philippine Immigration Act.
The House Committee on Agriculture and Food on Wednesday approved the measure seeking to amend the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act, also a SONA priority bill.
The measures pending at the committee level are the following:
– Department of Water Resources and Services and Creation of Water Regulatory Commission,
– Motor Vehicle User’s Charge/Road User’s Tax,
– Tatak-Pinoy (Proudly Filipino) Act,
– Blue Economy Law
– New Government Procurement Law,
– Amendment of the Cooperative Code, and
– New Government Auditing Code.