ANAKALUSUGAN party-list Rep. Mike Defensor is pushing for the grant of tax perks to donors of COVID-19 vaccine shots for teachers and children under the adopt-a-school program.
He filed a bill seeking to grant lucrative tax benefits to private corporations and wealthy individuals that shall sponsor the inoculation of some 933,000 teachers and 23 million children in the public school system, once vaccination for minors is allowed.
Under House Bill 9200, private entities paying for the COVID-19 jabs of teachers and children would be entitled to claim 150 percent of what they have spent for the shots as “additional deduction” from gross income subject to tax.
The measure seeks to expressly include COVID-19 vaccines as qualified donations under the 23-year-old Adopt-a-School Program.
“We want to ramp up the immunization of our teachers, and later, our children, by encouraging the private sector to come in and help,” said Defensor, the vice chairperson of the House committee on welfare of children.
“We recognize that many businesses and affluent families are already helping to suppress the pandemic in so many ways, such as by spending for the inoculation of their employees and their dependents. Our bill will help prevent ‘donor fatigue’ and encourage more private entities to help some more by contributing to the vaccination of our teachers and children,” he added.
The adopt-a-school program was established by Congress in 1998 through Republic Act 8525 to help mobilize private funds in addressing the school system’s persistent resource gaps.
Under the program, donors of qualified materials and supplies badly needed by public schools may further deduct from their gross income up to 150 percent of the value of their contribution.