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Budget approval before House break doubted

Compostela Valley Rep. Maria Carmen Zamora on Sunday hinted at the possibility that the proposed P3.757-trillion national budget for 2019 may not be approved on third and final reading before the Oct. 13 adjournment of Congress.

READ: House votes ‘yes’ to P3.7-trillion budget

But Zamora, vice chairwoman of the committee on appropriations, said Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo was still doing her best to pass the budget on final reading this week.

She said sending the budget to the ​Senate was a big task due to several delays arising from the P52-billion insertions that were ordered realigned by Arroyo to important projects for the equitable and fair distribution of funds. 

“Based on the volume of work that needs to be done and the fact that we’re still resolving all the matters taken up during the debates, we’ll try our best [to approve the national budget this week], but we may not have enough time to get it approved on third [and final] reading before the recess,” Zamora said. 

“The committee is working round the clock to make up for the lag incurred during the plenary schedule, but rest assured that we’ll be able to pass the 2019 budget on time.”

The House of Representatives will begin its break on Oct. 13 and will resume session on Nov. 12.

After 11 days of plenary deliberations Congress, through viva voce voting, approved the national budget on second reading on Oct. 3.

The plenary debates on the budget measure suffered delays due to the discovery of the alleged P52-billion insertions by the former House leadership.

Last Wednesday, House Majority Leader and Camarines Sur Rep. Rolando Andaya Jr. proposed the creation of a committee to receive and resolve the amendments to House Bill 8169 or the 2019 General Appropriations Bill.

The deadline for the submission of amendments is on Oct. 9. 

Topics: Maria Carmen Zamora , Senate , House of Representative , Congress , Gloria Macapagal Arroyo
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