House panel OKs consolidated bill extending life of Bayanihan 2
MANILA, Philippines—The House of Representatives’ committee on appropriations has approved the substitute bill which consolidated proposals to extend the validity of Republic Act No. 11494, or the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act.
At an online hearing on Monday (Dec. 14), the committee gave the green light to House Bill No. 8063, introduced by Speaker Lord Allan Velasco, Majority Floor Leader Rep. Martin Romualdez, Deputy Speaker Paolo Duterte, and committee chair Rep. Eric Yap.
The bill would allow the effectivity of Bayanihan 2 until March 27, 2021. Bayanihan 2 provided for stimulus funding for the government’s COVID-19 response worth P124 billion in regular appropriation and P25 billion in standby funds.
The measure, according to the original copy of HB No. 8063, would extend the effectivity of Bayanihan 2 to allow the government to continue programs and efforts to fight the pandemic.
At the online meeting, bill proponents said amendments had been made to HB No. 8063 although copies of the amended version have yet to be released.
Bayanihan 2 was initiated to help various sectors recover after the initial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic took a huge toll on the economy. Due to the health crisis, the Philippine economy contracted, shrinking by 16.5 percent in the second quarter of 2020.