House OKs on 2nd reading bill giving SK execs honoraria, allowances
MANILA, Philippines — The bill seeking to grant Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) officials with honoraria and allowances as well as appropriate certificates of civil service eligibility has been approved on second reading in the House of Representatives.
Via voice voting, the lower chamber approved during Tuesday’s session House Bill No. 10698 which seeks to amend Republic Act No. 10742 or the “Sangguniang Kabataan Reform Act of 2015.”
According to Albay Rep. Joey Salceda, the principal author of the measure, the bill entitles SK councilors to “honoraria, allowances, and such other emoluments as may be authorized by law.”
Salceda said the reform also expands the functions of SKs to include skills training, youth employment, environmental protection, values education, and other programs specific to the vulnerabilities affecting young people.
Currently, only SK chairpersons are entitled to the said benefits.
“If we want to professionalize the SK, we also have to ensure that its efforts are compensated. The SK were very crucial to the fight against COVID-19, as they were among the barangay frontliners that could be mobilized for ayuda distribution and module distribution,” Salceda said in a statement.
“I believe that the SK is still underutilized. We are giving them more benefits, but in return, we are also giving them more meaningful work,” he added.
The Senate has already approved its counterpart measure. Salceda said the House version may be approved on final reading next week.
“There is strong minority and majority support for the measure, so I expect very smooth sailing for this proposal,” Salceda said.
“Hopefully, we can do bicam during the session break and ratify during the final six session days before the term expires after elections. Better yet, we can do bicam next week and even ratify by Wednesday next week, if the Senate and House leaders are willing,” he added.
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