House Appropriations members said yesterday the ongoing budget deliberations in the House of Representatives “have opened our eyes to the drawbacks of the proposed cash-based budgeting system.”

The House is passing a resolution requesting the Senate to return House Bill 7302 or the proposed Budget Reform Act due to the new system’s policy that will hamper most of the projects of the Duterte government.

The solons are now united to oppose the Department of Budget and Management’s cash-based budgeting system which, they said, will largely cut the budgets of the Departments of Education, Health and Public Works and Highways.

The budgets of the said departments dipped P77 billion, P25 billion and 95 billion, respectively.

The resolution includes reservation and opposition to the immediate implementation of a cash-based budgeting in 2019.

In a statement, the members of the House said their debate with DBM would not result in a reenacted budget but assured the public that they will pass the General Appropriations Act in line with President Duterte’s development plan.
“The job in Congress is to ensure the passage of a budget that is in line with the vision of the President, a budget that benefits all Filipinos, especially those in the regions,” the House members added.

They said the budget deficit for 2019, which is P624.4 billion or 3.3 percent of GDP, is the anti-thesis of the “Build, Build, Build” project of President Rodrigo Duterte.

“The people expect more infrastructure, more assistance from government. Instead, the budget presented by the DBM is all about ‘Slash, Slash, Slash’ which would result in fewer of everything,” the solons said.

“Fewer roads, fewer classrooms, fewer government hospital facilities,” they said, adding the majority of the congressmen are willing to urge the Development Budget Coordination Committee to amend the budget that is more appropriate to the real situation in the country.

“We will revert to an obligations-based budget. The requirements of a cash-based budget simply do not reflect the realities of governance,” the House members said.

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