House panel OKs bill mandating national emergency recovery program

Zandro Ochona, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 16 2020 10:35 PM

A bill mandating a national emergency recovery program was approved by the House Committee on Disaster Resilience on Wednesday.

House Bill 8076, authored by San Jose Del Monte City Rep. Florida Robes said the bill also sought to grant the President power to extend the validity of appropriations of projects earmarked to respond to national emergencies not extending beyond two years.

“This will provide necessary, stable, and continuous appropriations to cover programs urgently needed to win the battle against the adverse impacts of any national emergency. And consequently, move the country forward towards recovery,” said Robes.

The committee also approved a bill consolidating HB 7174 authored by Deputy Speaker Eduardo “Bro. Eddie” Villanueva and CIBAC Partylist Rep. Domingo Rivera, as well as HB 7412 by QC Rep. Alfred Vargas, both prohibiting the active use and display of commercial billboards during typhoons.

The measure would require all printed billboards to be rolled up and electronic billboards to be turned off within 12 hours after PAGASA announces a Signal No. 1 typhoon or any weather disturbance. 

If passed into law, violators would be slapped with a fine of not less than P300,000 or an imprisonment of six months to one year.

A technical working group was also created to come up with a substitute bill consolidating HB 938 or the proposed Disaster Service Volunteer Leave Act by Magdalo Partylist Rep. Manuel Cabochan III; HB 5042 or the Magna Carta of Rescue Workers by Manila Rep. John Marvin “Yul Servo” Nieto; and HB 7921 or the proposed “Volunteer Allowance Act” by Parañaque Rep. Joy Myra Tambunting.

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