House to support bigger allocation for infra projects in 2018 budget

IMAGE_UNTV_NEWS_071717_ infrastructure program

MANILA, Philippines — Lower House lawmakers pin-point four priority legislation for the 2nd regular session of the 17th Congress.

House Deputy Speaker Gwendolyn Garcia said they will initially focus on passing the 2018 National Budget and on allocating bigger funding to the infrastructure projects of the administration.

“This is very crucial as the Duterte administration marks on the most massive infrastructure program. The motto has been ‘build build build,’ and such a massive infrastructure undertaking will need the support of the budget,” Deputy House Speaker Cong. Gwendolyn Garcia said.

The House also plans to pass a supplemental budget for the rehabilitation of Marawi City.

It also identified the charter change and federalism as among the priority legislation in the coming regular session.

While no bill has been filed yet, the lawmakers set to push for legalizing civil unions of same sex couples, or of heterosexual couples who wish to cohabitate but are not ready to get married.

This, following House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez’ statements that he wants to provide protection and rights to live in couples.

“We have to address this, this is a changing reality, and it has been a growing necessity . . . The Civil Union Bill will also govern property rights, custodial rights over children, and adoption rights,” Deputy Garcia added.

The lawmakers, however, clarifed that they will hear all sides, as this is expected to be a controversial measure that might earn the ire of religious groups.

“Ang panukalang batas na ito ay isa palang panukala palang, Kung ano ang nakalagay sa panukala ito ay hindi pa ang batas, ibig sabihin pag-uusapan pa ito sa committee level at pag-uusapan pa sa plenaryo,” Deputy House Speaker Cong. Fred Castro said. (This proposed legislation is still a draft bill. Whatever is written on the bill is not yet the law, meaning, it has to be discussed in the committee level and scrutinized at the plenary.) – Joyce Balancio | UNTV News & Rescue

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