MANILA — Lawmakers are entitled to a P100 million allocation under the proposed 2020 national budget, Albay 2nd District Rep. Joey Salceda said Wednesday.
Salceda, who heads the House Committee on Ways and Means, said lawmakers proposed the inclusion of the amount in the submitted P4.1 trillion national budget.
“Of course, there are allocations for my constituents. Who determined it? The Executive,” he told reporters in Malacañang.
“Pina-process na po ‘yan sa ng mga executive department, executive agencies…We propose for the inclusion [of the allocation],” he said.
(That is processed in the executive department.)
Of the P100 million for each congressman, Salceda said P70 million is allotted for “hard” or infrastructure projects, while P30 million is for “soft” projects such as medical and educational assistance.
Salceda however denied that the allocations are “pork” since the P100 million cannot be considered as a lump-sum amount.
“It is pork-free based on Supreme Court standards,” he said.
The "pork barrel" system in Congress, which was institutionalized through the Priority Development Assistance Fund, was abolished in late 2013 when the Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional.
The House next week is set to approve the proposed P4.1-trillion 2020 national budget, a prompt acceptance to prove the influence of President Rodrigo Duterte’s allies in the chamber.
“We just want to prove that the so-called Duterte super coalition in the House is working,” Salceda said.