Monday, December 14 the President Rodrigo Duterte wrote a letter to House Speaker Allan Velasco regarding the extension of General Appropriations Act (GAA) of 2020 and Bayanihan Heal as One Act 2.
This is response to the incoming expirations of these laws. In the letter, the President ask the Congress to come up with a bill that would make it possible.
In accordance with the unforeseeable circumstance that happened this year, which was the Covid-19 pandemic. A lot of projects were postponed because funding to address the pandemic was needed.
Also, it will give more time to spend the budget in response to Covid-19. Programs, projects and activities that needs to be continued in addressing the pandemic was also the point of the President.
Bills that are ordered as urgent are exempted from the rule where lawmakers are required to study the law wherein it would usually take up to 3 days, before voting on it.
The President was then agreed by 221 Representatives from the Lower House. Which means GAA and Bayanihan 2 are extended.
The 2020 budget has left P4.1 trillion which could have been use to continue projects postponed or stop because of the pandemic, this was according to Senate Committee on Finance chair Sen. Sonny Angara. While, Bayanihan 2 allocated about P8 billlion for procurement of vaccine another P140 billion to help sectors affected by situation, and earmarked P25 billion in stand-by funds if ever the government needed more money.