Bills creating 3 departments among top House priorities
MANILA, Philippines — As Congress resumes work on Monday, the House of Representatives will prioritize the passage of three bills creating new departments focused on overseas Filipinos, water resources, and disaster resilience, according to Majority Leader Martin Romualdez.
On instructions of Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano, the Leyte lawmaker and chair of the House rules committee said the 300-strong chamber would expedite passage of the three measures identified as priorities by President Rodrigo Duterte.
The goal is to pass the bills creating a Department of Filipinos Overseas, a Department of Water, and a Department of Disaster Resilience before the next adjournment of Congress in mid-March.
“We aim to hit the ground running when session resumes on Monday. Time to roll up our sleeves once again and work double time on vital legislative measures,”Romualdez said in a statement.
“No less than President
Duterte himself called on Congress to work on these measures during his fourth State of the Nation Address last July,” he added.
Of the three bills, the one on overseas Filipinos, House Bill No. 5832, has progressed the fastest and is now under plenary deliberation. It shall next be subject to voting on second reading, and if it passes, on third and final reading.
On the other hand, the 27 separate measures on disaster resilience have been consolidated into one, with the appropriations panel poised to discuss its funding provisions on Jan. 22. Once approved, it will be taken up in a plenary session.
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