Senate finance panelists unanimously endorsed Senate bill 2566 approval

By Jason de Asis


SENATE OFFICE, Manila, November 9, 2010-The enactment of the Government-Owned and Controlled Corporations (GOCC’s) Governance Act under Senate Bill 2566 authored by Senator Franklin Drilon, Chair senate of finance committee was favorably endorsed by Finance Sec. Cesar V. Purisima, Budget Sec. Butch Abad, Chairman Francisco Duque of the Civil Service Commission and Asst. Government Counsel Elpidio Vega.


“This is the GOCC reform act which we hope will rationalize the structure, existence and operations of the GOCCs. The principal features of the bill is that we will come up with a Governing Council for GOCCs which will have delegated powers to reorganize the various boards, to set compensation for the board of directors, they will be acting by virtue of the delegated powers of Congress,” Drilon said, adding that the days when the 157 boards can act independently of the national government is over, once we have this bill passed into law we are confident that we would be able to have this measure passed in the Senate, and we will work on its passage in the House of Representatives.


Drilon stressed that they are confident that if the said bill becomes a law the abuses that they saw on the part of the GOCCs will no longer be possible adding that there are a number of amendments submitted and the committee will now go through it and the committee is inclined to include some of the amendments in the committee report.


“There is no opposition. There are proposed amendments as for example the structure of the GOCC Governance Council, which we proposed to create in the bill, there are proposed amendments that should be under the DOF, rather than under the OP. There are proposed amendments to the structure of the council which we will adopt,” he added.


“We will now submit a committee report and we will incorporate the amendments suggested by the different resource persons. The next step is that we will be ready to sponsor it on the floor,” he furthered.


Drilon also said that now there is no counterpart of the said bill however he said that once they have the final version, they will sit down with the Speaker and ask them to take a look at this for possible filing in the House.


“I think they will see the merit of having this bill passed. Once we have finalized the committee report and once we have submitted it for debates to the Senate and after the amendments on the floor, we intend to request the President to certify this as an urgent measure in order that its passage can be assured,” he explained.


On the other hand Drilon said that Senator Enrile’s proposal on uniform standard compensation is possible and the senate will leave it to the governing council to work on because it’s difficult to set it in the law because the salary must be dynamic, “meaning you must be able to adopt it to the environment that you operate in. So we will leave that to the council to handle,” he pointed out.


They also targeted the 2011 budget this mid-December for the approval of the bicameral conference committee report and to be submitted to the President afterwards under their calendar to approve it on 3rd reading by December 1 according to their timetable.


“That is the timetable that we have. We will exert every effort to follow this timetable,” he said. They have morning and afternoon session starting November 24, 25, 26, 30 and December 1. (Jason de Asis)