Comelec reminds media outlets on bigger poll ad discounts

Christian V. Esguerra, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 01 2019 04:04 PM

A ballot is cast at the Comelec headquarters during the 2016 elections. For the 2019 mid-term vote, the poll body is mandating discounts for political advertisements. Gigie Cruz, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA -- Candidates in the May elections are set to enjoy bigger discounts on political advertisements beginning later this week, following the publication of the Commission on Elections’ implementing rules on the price cut.

The amendment to the Fair Elections Act mandates media outlets to provide a 50-percent discount on TV ads, up from 30 percent, to candidates and registered political parties.

The new discount for political ads on radio is now 40 percent, an increase from the old 20-percent discount. Campaign ads for print remained at 10 percent.

The discounts will be computed based on the average of a media outlet’s published rates in the past 3 years.

"In no case shall rates charged to registered political parties and bona fide candidates be higher than the rates charged to non-political advertisers," according to the Comelec’s March 29 resolution published 2 days later.

The new rates will take effect 7 days after publication.

The resolution also required media outlets to submit a document to the Comelec’s campaign finance office, certifying that the new discount rates had been implemented.

Under the law, candidates with political parties are allowed to spend P3 for every registered voter where they are running.

Those running without political parties have a higher limit of P5 per registered voter.

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