House majority members meet before start of budget hearings
MANILA, Philippines — Some 160 House members attended Wednesday the majority caucus called by Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano to further organize the chamber before the deliberations for the 2020 national budget kickstart.
Cayetano said the meeting at a mall in Taguig around lunchtime was aimed at tackling various priority measures enumerated by President Rodrigo Duterte during his State of the Nation Address in July, which would also be discussed in a small group Legislative-Executive Development Advisory Council meeting next week.
“After receiving the 2020 national budget yesterday, we are setting timelines and defining tasks and responsibilities to ensure that we get things done,” the Taguig-Pateros representative said in a Facebook post.
The Department of Budget and Management submitted Tuesday the 2020 National Expenditure Program to Congress.
The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office and Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation would be the first agencies whose spending plan would undergo House scrutiny on Thursday.
The House will hold marathon sessions, both in the plenary and committee level, to ensure passage of the P4.1 trillion national budget for 2020 before the end of the year, Majority Leader and Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez earlier said in a statement.
Romualdez also said that by Sept. 12, the chamber would hold sessions on Thursdays and Fridays, past the regular Monday to Wednesday schedule.
The House also moved its plenary session from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. to make room for four budget hearings scheduled by the House committee on appropriations, he added. /je
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.