House musters quorum, passes 12 bills | Inquirer News
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House musters quorum, passes 12 bills

/ 05:53 AM August 25, 2015

The House of Representatives on Monday managed to muster its third quorum in the last three weeks and pass a dozen bills, including a “partial divorce” bill.

Deputy Speaker Pangalian Balindong counted 204 lawmakers present at the start of the session at 4 p.m. after Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. made a fervent appeal to his colleagues to attend the thrice-a-week sessions amid fears that President Aquino’s priority bills, specifically the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), would not be approved before the start of the campaign season later this year.

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But the session lasted for only two hours as Buhay Rep. Lito Atienza questioned the presence of a quorum as there were visibly more empty seats than warm bodies in the session hall. The House members had apparently left one by one after the roll call.

The session was adjourned at 6 p.m. but not before the lawmakers approved on third and final reading House Bill No. 5907 allowing a Filipino spouse to remarry in cases where the alien spouse had obtained a decree of absolute divorce from a foreign judicial body.

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The other bills passed on third reading were: HB 5912 granting athletes and coaches additional incentives; HB 5955 establishing a free basic medicine assistance program in all government hospitals and clinics; HB 5906 establishing the periods of prescription for certain offenses punishable by special acts and violations of local ordinances;

HB 5911 which mandates the installation of speed limiters in public utility vehicles; HB 5896 institutionalizing the national career assessment examination for secondary school students; HB 5902 granting discounts on basic and educational services to underprivileged higher and technical education students; HB 5978 designating the Philippine National Performance Arts Companies and defining their roles and functions;

HB 5988 granting overseas Filipino workers the right to equal protection on money claims; HB 5617 establishing the regulatory framework for the safe operations of LPG industry; HB 5973 promulgating a comprehensive policy on needs of persons afflicted with rare disorders; and HB 5956 mandating the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. to increase the coverage for dialysis treatment of members to 90 sessions per year.

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TAGS: House, House bills, Pangalian Balindong, quorum
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