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Monday, October 14, 2019

DOTr 2020 Budget Sails Through Senate Committee, Now Set for Plenary Deliberation


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The Department of Transportation’s (DOTr) proposed budget for 2020 moves forward, following the approval from the Senate Committee on Finance during today’s hearing.

During the deliberations, the DOTr Team, headed by Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, presented ongoing and pipeline projects, as well as programs and initiatives, that need increased funding for 2020.

The PhP147-billion proposed budget is sought for the implementation of high-priority infrastructure projects and programs covering the sectors of aviation and airports, railways, road transport, and maritime. Under the proposed budget, 98% will be allocated to ongoing railway projects.

After a series of inquiries, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, chairperson of the Senate Finance Subcommittee E, conveyed the panel’s approval of the DOTr’s proposed budget for 2020, which will now be elevated to the plenary for deliberation.

Other senators who attended the deliberations were Senate Minority Floor Leader Franklin Drilon, Sen. Nancy Binay, Sen. Imee Marcos, Sen. Risa Hontiveros, Sen. Miguel Zubiri, Sen. Joel Villanueva, Sen. Francis Tolentino, and Sen. Grace Poe.

In his closing statement, Secretary Tugade thanked Senator Gatchalian for his assistance in the committee approval of the DOTr budget. He likewise assured the panel that requirements for the requested additional funding will be submitted at the soonest time possible.

“We are grateful for the time and the patience given by the Chairman. We really appreciate your efforts, sir, but really, we need some additions in the budget that we are submitting. I hope that the urgency will be justified, and we’ll accordingly prepare the communications to present to you the details of our requests and the justifications for the same,” Secretary Tugade expressed.

Several senators also showed their support for the proposed budget increase, commending numerous projects that are set to benefit the Filipino people before the end of the Duterte administration.

The proposed 2020 budget of the DOTr and its attached agencies has previously passed the interpellation at the plenary session of the House of Representatives on 20 September 2019.

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