Budget dep't says to explain 'double appropriations' in 2021 spending plan

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 01 2020 03:48 PM

MANILA - The Department of Budget and Management said Tuesday it would explain details of items in the proposed 2021 budget that were already included in this year's appropriations.

Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado said projects with fresh appropriations for 2021 are big-ticket infrastructure projects under the Department of Public Works and Highways' multi-year contractual arrangement.

"Kailangan nga po talagang matapos at hindi naman mabibigay lahat ng budget for this year, kaya nga po hiniling ng DPWH na ipagpatuloy hanggang next year kaya po naulit iyong project na iyan as recommended by DPWH," Avisado said in a Palace press briefing.

(We really need to finish the projects but the budget cannot be fully released this year. The DPWH requested to continue it until next year so that's why the project is repeated.)

"Ang detalye po nito, ipapaliwanag po namin during the course of the budget hearing doon sa House of Representatives at saka sa Senate," he added.

(Details of this will be explained during the course of the budget hearing at the House of Representatives and in the Senate.)

On Monday, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said he would question several items in the 2021 budget that were already included in this year's appropriations.

Lacson did not disclose figures, but said that several infrastructure projects in the proposed spending bill were already funded under the 2020 budget.

"It's a big issue to me kasi baka (because it might be) double appropriation," he said.

Under the government's proposed P4.5 trillion budget for 2021, President Rodrigo Duterte's "Build, Build, Build" infrastructure program will get a P1.107 trillion allocation in the hopes that it could spur over 200,000 jobs as the crisis has left millions jobless.