Batangas provincial board supports bill seeking to renew ABS-CBN franchise


Posted at Jan 14 2021 04:50 PM

MANILA — The Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Batangas has expressed support for a Senate bill seeking to give ABS-CBN Corp. a new franchise after a House panel rejected the company's application for a license to operate last year.

On Monday, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan passed a resolution expressing support for the bill filed by Senate President Vicente Sotto III, which seeks to give the broadcasting company a new license to operate its television and radio broadcasting stations for 25 years.

The resolution was sponsored by board member Bibong Mendoza, who said ABS-CBN Channel 2's closure had a "wide effect" on the Southern Tagalog region, where Batangas is a part of and where the company operated a regional channel.

In July, the House Committee on Legislative Franchises denied a new broadcast franchise for ABS-CBN Corp., which also prompted the shutdown of the regional stations.

Mendoza also acknowledged that network's significant contributions, such as when it delivered relief to the province following the eruption of Taal Volcano last year and during the COVID-19 pandemic.

At least 13 senators have backed Sotto's bill.

Under the law, all local, spending and franchise bills must first be approved on final reading in the House of Representatives before the Senate can tackle it in plenary.