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Grace says minimum wage earners, students, seniors to get additional 10% discount

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Senator Grace Poe said on Monday said the Department of Transportation (DOTr) has agreed to implement the additional 10-percent fare discount in public utility vehicles as provided in the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law.

In a radio interview, Poe said the DOTr committed during budget interpolations to implement the social-mitigating measure to ease the impact of the tax reform law, especially for the poor.

Under Section 82 of the TRAIN law, minimum-wage earners and the poorest 50 percent of the population are qualified for fare discounts in all public utility vehicles in the amount equivalent to 10 percent of the authorized fare.

“Siniguro natin sa ating interpelasyon ng budget na ‘yung ipinangako mula doon sa TRAIN law na pagtulong ng gobyerno,” Poe said.

“Halimbawa, maliban pa sa mga nakukuhang discount ng mga student, mga minimum wage earner at mga senior citizen, mayroon pa dapat na nakapatong doon na 10 percent. So, kung 20 percent na sila noon, dapat 30 percent na; pumayag naman, yan ay i-implementa ng DOTr,” she added.

She, however, said only half out of the 171,836 jeepney driver-beneficiaries were able to receive fuel subsidy cards, which is another social-mitigating measure under the TRAIN law.

Around P977 million is appropriated for the Pantawid Pasada program in 2018.

Under Section 82 of the TRAIN law, jeepney franchise holders are entitled to fuel vouchers.

“Ang success rate nila, kung mayroon man silang nabigyan, parang 47 percent lamang so may kalahati pa talagang hind pa nakakatanggap,” Poe said.

“Marami namang isyu kasi diyan. ‘Yung iba doon may mga jeep na hindi naman ‘yung mismong operator ang nagmamaneho. Marami sa kanila either wala na dito sa bansang ito o ibinenta na nila pero ang papel ay hindi pa naayos,” she added.

The fuel subsidy is expected to increase to P20,514 or P1,709 per month for every beneficiary this year, compared with the P5,000 subsidy last year. (PNA)

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