Tuesday, March 07, 2006

P1,000 allowance for govt workers out next week

Budget Secretary Rolando Andaya Jr. assured Tuesday state workers will receive their additional P1,000 monthly allowance not later than March 15.

Andaya Jr. said the increase, made through presidential action, is retroactive to January 1.

"Ibibigay po namin sa kada departamento not later than March 15. Iyung inisyal na matatanggap po nila na first three months nga po (We will release the funds per department not later than March 15. The initial amount that they will get is for three months)," Andaya told DZMM.

The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) earlier announced it has released some P3.4 billion for the allowance of civil servants.

It has reportedly started issuing special allotment release orders (SAROs) and the corresponding "notices of cash allocations" to national government agencies so that they can grant the equivalent of three months in additional pay to their employees.

The additional allowance for state workers was made possible by Administrative Order No. 144 signed by President Arroyo last month, authorizing the grant of the P1,000 additional compensation to national government employees.

Expected to benefit from AO 144 are more than 1.5 million state workers, including policemen, soldiers, firemen and other uniformed personnel.

Andaya said the President issued AO 144 due to the delay in the passage at the Senate by a supplementary budget for P13.1 billion, the cost of the pay increase.

He said this is not the first time allowances were increased through presidential action. He cited AO 53 issued by President Fidel Ramos on May 17, 1993 which gave an additional P500 allowance for state workers, and Executive Orders 18, 108 and 116 signed in 1998 and 1999 signed by President Joseph Estrada, which increased the allowance of uniformed personnel.

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