Rep. Lagman, iminungkahi ang P1Trillion stimulus package para sa COVID-19 assistance

Iminungkahi ni Albay Representative Edcel Lagman ang pagkakaroon ng P1 trilyong stimulus package upang maipagpatuloy ng pamahalaan ang pagbibigay ng ayuda sa mga tao at negosyong apektado ng COVID-19 emergency.

“Not less than P1 trillion is needed for a stimulus package for [the] government to continue its social and labor amelioration assistance and to provide a lifeline for distressed businesses,” ayon kay Lagman sa isang pahayag.

“The funding shall include assistance not only to vulnerable families and displaced workers but also to other affected persons belonging to the middle class,” dagdag nito.

Ayon pa sa mambabatas, nakipag-usap siya kay Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia kung saan sinang-ayunan nila na nangangailangan din ng tulong ang ilang pangunahing korporasyon kagaya ng airlines, shipping, land transport, hotels, export firms at manufacturers, bukod na sa micro, small at medium enterprises.

Aniya, maaaring magmula sa iba’t ibang source ang iminungkahing halaga, kabilang na ang “monetization by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) for budget support of an allowable portion of the country’s foreign reserves which was at a high of $83.2-billion as of end-March 2019, provided a six-month import buffer is not jeopardized.”

Kabilang din sa ibang posibleng sources ang mga sumusunod, ayon kay Lagman

  • “Issuance of bonds by the Bureau of the Treasury which the BSP shall purchase together with other qualified bidders;
  • Extension and expansion of the “Tax Amnesty Act” or RA 11213;
  • Grant of tax credit or special tax discounts for advance tax payments, subject to subsequent reconciliation of the actual tax due;
  • Sale of government assets;
  • Advances of dividends due to the national government from Government Owned and Controlled Corporations;
  • Additional contributions from the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation and the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office; and
  • Legitimate savings from the 2019 and 2020 General Appropriations Acts (GAAs) like: 10% across the board reduction of MOOE of all departments and agencies, reduction of procurement of military hardware, IT equipment and facilities, and office equipment, among others, and drastic reduction of foreign travel, seminars and conferences.”

“The requirement under Section 25 (4) of Article XI of the Constitution for a special appropriations bill to be supported by funds actually available as certified by the National Treasurer, or to be raised by a corresponding revenue proposal, is satisfied by the available funding sources as well as of revenue administrative measures which do not impose new taxes,” sabi ni Lagman.

Kamakailan, iginiit ng mga mambabatas na mayroong nasa P275 bilyong off-budget funds na maaaring magamit upang tumulong na i-address ang krisis sa COVID-19.

Ngunit sinabi naman ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte na hindi sapat ang halagang ito at pinakiusapan si Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez na maghanap pa ng pondo para sa COVID-19 response ng pamahalaan. 

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