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X. BILLS, RESOLUTIONS, MESSAGES, MEMORIALS AND PETITIONS
Section 42. Bills and Resolutions. Bills and resolutions shall be signed by their author(s) and, together with an electronic copy thereof, filed with the Secretary General, who shall assign a number to each bill or resolution. The Secretary General shall not receive a bill or resolution unless it is accompanied by an electronic copy thereof. In case of any discrepancy between the printed and the electronic copies of the bill or resolution, the printed copy shall be followed.
The Secretary General shall thereafter transmit the bill or resolution to the Committee on Rules which shall, through the Majority Leader, determine the appropriate committee(s) to which the bill or resolution shall be referred: Provided, That at the opening of a Congress, pending the organization of the Committee on Rules, the acting Floor Leader shall determine the appropriate committees to which measures shall be referred.
Members who are refiling bills and resolutions that were filed in previous Congresses by other Members of the House shall acknowledge and recognize the latter as prior authors thereof in the explanatory notes of the refiled bills and resolutions.
A bill or resolution shall have only one (1) subject matter that shall be expressed in the title thereof. In case a bill or resolution has more than one (1) subject matter, the Committee on Rules, through the Majority Leader, shall immediately inform the author(s) thereof so that appropriate changes or amendments can be made.
In cases of bills of local application seeking the establishment of the same kind of facilities or the delivery of the same services or the grant of the same assistance and privileges to various local government units within the same legislative district or province filed by the same author(s), the Secretary General, for the purpose of reporting these bills for First Reading, may make a summary statement on the titles thereof citing such similar facilities, services, assistance or privileges sought to be provided to various recipients, and the numbers assigned thereto proceeding from the number assigned to the bill first filed up to the number assigned to the bill last filed.
Measures submitted to the House through people’s initiative shall be referred to the Committee on Rules for appropriate action.
Section 43. First Reading. The Secretary General shall report all bills and resolutions to the House for First Reading within three (3) session days from receipt thereof. The First Reading shall involve only the reading of the number, title and author of the bill or resolution, followed by the referral thereof by the Speaker to the appropriate committee. During the First Reading, the principal author may propose the inclusion of additional authors by submitting their names to the Secretary General or by making appropriate motions in plenary session.
In case of measures reported out by a committee after conducting, motu proprio, hearings or inquiries on issues and concerns within its jurisdiction in accordance with Section 26 hereof, the referral thereof to the Committee on Rules shall be considered its First Reading.
Section 44. Referral to Committee. As a general rule, a bill or resolution shall be referred to only one (1) committee.
Whenever a bill or resolution covers a subject matter that relates to the jurisdiction of more than one (1) committee, it shall be referred to the committee whose jurisdiction the subject matter directly and principally relates to: Provided, That if the bill or joint resolution entails the appropriation of public funds or contains tax or revenue proposals, the committee to which the bill or joint resolution is referred shall transmit the same to the Committee on Appropriations and/or the Committee on Ways and Means, as the case may be, for comments relative to the appropriation or tax or revenue aspects only. The committee to which the bill or joint resolution is referred shall be principally responsible for submitting a report to the House. It may incorporate therein the recommendations of the Committee on Appropriations and/or the Committee on Ways and Means, as the case may be. In case of bills of local application transmitted to the Committee on Appropriations for comments relative to the funding provision, the chairperson of the Committee on Appropriations may act on the same: Provided, That the chairperson of the Committee on Appropriations shall furnish the Members of the committee a list of these bills.
A committee to which a bill or resolution is referred may request, through its chairperson, another committee, through its chairperson, for comments on a bill or resolution pending before it and, subject to the consent of the latter, await such comments within a period mutually agreed upon before preparing the committee report on the bill or resolution.
Section 45. Change of Referral. The chairperson of a committee to which a bill or resolution is referred may make a written request to the Committee on Rules for a change of referral of such bill or resolution. The Committee on Rules shall decide on the request within a reasonable time from receipt thereof.
Section 46. Consolidation or Substitution. A committee may decide to approve a bill or resolution with or without amendments, a substitute bill or resolution, or a consolidated bill or resolution. A substitute measure of a bill or resolution shall have as author/s the author/s of the original bill or resolution. A consolidated bill or resolution or a substitute measure covering two (2) or more bills or resolutions shall have as authors those of the original bills or resolutions in the order in which their names appear in the bills or resolutions and according to the dates of filing of the bills and resolutions or the numbers assigned to them. The names of the committee chairpersons, other Members of the committee and other Members of the House may, thereafter, be listed as co-authors of the measure if they so desire.
In case of two (2) or more bills or resolutions on the same subject matter with conflicting provisions, the author of the measure which provisions are substantially adopted in the consolidated or substitute measure shall be considered as the principal author thereof.
Section 47. Status of Measures.The Committees shall provide periodic updates to Members on the status of measures referred to them by posting the same in the House website and, as far as practicable, through electronic mail.
Section 48. Bills and Resolutions Favorably Acted Upon. When a committee action on a bill or resolution is favorable, the bill or resolution and the corresponding report together with other supporting documents and information materials shall, together with electronic copies thereof, be filed with the Secretary General, who shall assign a number to the report. Thereafter, the sponsoring committee shall transmit the same to the Committee on Rules in such number of copies as required by said committee together with the electronic copy thereof.
In case of bills or resolutions previously filed in the immediately preceding Congress which have been considered and reported out by a particular committee, the same may be disposed of as matters already reported upon the approval of majority of the Members of the committee present, there being a quorum.
The committee secretary shall immediately prepare the necessary committee reports on said measures for inclusion in the Calendar of Business.
Section 49. Bills Unfavorably Acted Upon. When a committee action on a bill or resolution is unfavorable, the bill or resolution shall be laid on the table. The author(s) shall be notified in writing and, as far as practicable, through electronic mail of the action within five (5) days after the bill or resolution has been laid on the table, stating the reason(s) therefor.
Section 50. Discharge of Committees. Any Member may present to the Secretary General a motion in writing to discharge a committee from the consideration of a bill or resolution referred to it if such committee fails to act thereon after more than thirty (30) session days from its referral. The motion shall be placed in the custody of the Secretary General who shall arrange a convenient place where Members can affix their signatures. A signature may be withdrawn by a Member in writing at any time before the motion is entered in the Journal. When one-fifth (1/5) of all the Members sign the motion, it shall be included in the Calendar of Business and reported in the next session of the House.
Section 51. Consideration of Motion to Discharge. After the Privilege Hour on any Monday, except during the last fifteen (15) days of a regular session, any Member who signed a motion to discharge may demand its consideration. The House shall proceed to vote on the motion after debate thereon for a period not exceeding thirty (30) minutes.
If a motion to discharge is adopted, a motion to proceed to the immediate consideration of such bill or resolution shall be in order; and if such motion prevails, the bill or resolution shall be considered immediately. If a motion to discharge is lost, it shall not be in order to entertain any other motion to discharge the same committee or any other committee from the consideration of the same bill or any other bill with substantially the same subject matter during the same session year. After the House acts on the motion to discharge, all other motions to discharge relating to bills or resolutions with similar subject matter which are pending in the Calendar of Business shall be stricken off the Calendar and shall not be acted upon for the remainder of the same session year.
Section 52. Urgent Bills and Resolutions. The Committee on Rules, through the Majority Leader, may, at any time declare a bill or resolution urgent. It shall prepare a timetable which shall fix the date when the bill or resolution must be reported by the committee concerned, the number of days or hours to be allotted for the consideration of the bill or resolution in plenary session, and the date and hour debate must be concluded and final vote taken.
Section 53. Second Reading and Debate. A bill or joint resolution on Second Reading shall be read in full unless copies thereof have been distributed to the Members. The bill or joint resolution shall be subject to debate and pertinent motions. Debate shall begin with the sponsorship speech of the chairperson of the sponsoring committee or by any duly designated Member thereof, followed by those of the authors of the measure, if they desire to do so.
Section 54. Motion to Close Debate. A motion to close the debate on a measure shall be in order after three (3) speeches in favor and two (2) against, or after only one (1) speech in favor and none against: Provided, That within the last fifteen (15) days before adjournment, a motion to close debate on a measure shall be in order after two (2) speeches in favor and one (1) against, or after only one (1) speech in favor and none against.
Section 55. Cloture. When a matter under consideration has been sufficiently discussed by a Member who has the floor and there are several Members who have signified their intention to speak on the same matter, the Speaker may, motu proprio or upon motion of a Member, order the Member having the floor to desist from speaking further so that other Members may be given the opportunity to speak.
Section 56. Amendments. After the close of debate, the House shall proceed to the consideration of committee amendments subject to the five-minute rule. A Member who desires to speak against a committee amendment shall also have five (5) minutes.
After the committee amendments, individual amendments shall be considered and shall likewise be subject to the five-minute rule. The five-minute rule shall also apply in the consideration of an amendment to an amendment, or of an amendment by substitution.
Section 57. Approval of Bill or Joint Resolution on Second Reading; Adoption of Resolution. After the amendments are acted upon and the period of amendments is closed, the House shall vote on the bill or joint resolution on Second Reading or vote on the adoption of a resolution, as the case may be.
Bills of local application under the Calendar of Business may be summarily approved on Second Reading through an omnibus motion of the Majority Leader citing the numbers assigned thereto and the page(s) of the Calendar of Business on which they are listed.
Section 58. Third Reading. A bill or joint resolution approved on Second Reading shall be included in the Calendar of Bills and Joint Resolutions for Third Reading. On the Third Reading of a bill or joint resolution, no amendment thereto shall be allowed. Nominal voting thereon shall be done immediately and the result shall be entered in the Journal. Explanation of votes shall be allowed only after the announcement by the Secretary General of the results of the nominal voting: Provided, That no other motions shall be considered until after the explanation of votes, if any.
No bill or joint resolution shall become law unless it passes three (3) readings on separate days and printed copies thereof in its final form are distributed to the Members three (3) days before its passage except when the President certifies to the necessity of its immediate enactment to meet a public calamity or emergency.
Section 59. Recommitment of Measure. A bill and joint resolution reported out may be recommitted to the originating committee before its approval on Second Reading.
Section 60. Transmittal to the Senate.The Secretary General shall transmit to the Senate for its concurrence all bills and joint or concurrent resolutions approved by the House and the amendments of the House to the bills or resolutions of the Senate. If the measures approved without amendment are bills or resolutions of the Senate, or if amendments of the Senate to bills of the House are accepted, the Secretary General shall forthwith notify the Senate of the actions taken: Provided, Thatsuch transmittal by the Secretary General to the Senate of measures passed by the House shall be made only after the lapse of the reglamentary period within which a Member can file a motion for reconsideration.
Section 61. Measures from the Senate. Bills and resolutions from the Senate shall be referred to and shall be acted upon by the appropriate committee in the same manner as bills and resolutions presented by Members of the House.
In cases where the Senate bills and resolutions are substantially the same as House bills or resolutions previously reported by a House committee, these may be disposed of as such measures entered in the record of matters already reported.
If the House bill or resolution is on Second Reading, the House may, during the period of amendments, adopt the provisions of the Senate measure as an amendment to the House bill or resolution.
If the House bill or resolution is on Third Reading, the House may reconsider its approval on Second Reading. Thereafter, the House may, during the period of amendments, adopt the provisions of the Senate measure as an amendment to the House Bill or resolution.
Bills or resolutions of the House with the amendments of the Senate, as well as Senate bills or resolutions which are substantially the same as House bills or resolutions previously approved, may be disposed of immediately as pending matters. The House may concur with the Senate amendments to the House bill or resolution or adopt the Senate bill or resolution as the House version of the measure.
Section 62. Conference Committee. In cases where the House does not agree with the Senate on any amendment to any House bill or joint resolution, or where the Senate has approved a similar bill to a House-approved bill, and these measures have conflicting provisions, differences may be settled by conference committees composed of representatives from both chambers.
In resolving the differences between the two measures, the House panel shall, as much as possible, adhere to and support the House bill or joint resolution. If the differences with the Senate bill or joint resolution are so substantial that they materially impair the House bill or joint resolution, the panel shall report such fact to the House for the latter’s appropriate action.
The Speaker shall appoint the Members of the House panel in a conference committee whose names shall be manifested in open session and entered in the Journal: Provided, That the chairperson of the committee that reported out the bill or joint resolution under consideration and the principal author(s) thereof shall be Members of the House panel; and Provided, further, That equitable representation of the Majority and the Minority in the panel shall be ensured.
Section 63. Conference Committee Reports. The conference committee shall finalize a report within sixty (60) session days from the date of its organization. Otherwise, the Members of the House panel shall submit a report to the House explaining why the conference committee is unable to prepare a report.
A conference committee report shall be signed by a majority of the Members of both panels on the last page and every page thereof. The report shall contain a clear and detailed statement of the changes in or amendments to the subject measures. Copies of the original measures approved by the House and the Senate shall be attached to the report. The report shall be filed with the Secretary General together with an electronic copy thereof.
The consideration of conference committee reports shall always be in order, except when the Journal is being read, while the roll is being called, or the House is dividing on any question.
The consideration of the conference committee report shall not be in order unless copies thereof are distributed to the Members: Provided, That in the last fifteen (15) days of each session period, it shall be deemed sufficient that three (3) copies of the report, together with an electronic copy thereof, are filed with the office of the Secretary General.
A conference committee report shall be ratified by a majority vote of the Members of the House present, there being a quorum.
Section 64. Enrollment of Bills and Joint Resolutions. The Speaker shall order the enrollment of approved bills or joint resolutions within three (3) days after final approval by both Houses. The Bills and Index Service and the secretariat of the committee(s) that reported out the bill shall ensure that the bill is in the correct form and contains the provisions approved by both Houses.
The enrolled bill or joint resolution shall be signed within five (5) working days by the Speaker and the Secretary General. The Secretary General shall report to the House the time of presentation of the bill or joint resolution to the President and the record thereof shall be entered in the Journal.
Upon the lapse of thirty (30) days from receipt of the bill or joint resolution by the Office of the President, and no communication of a veto made thereon by the President is received by the House within the same period, the Secretary General shall certify to this fact which shall be recorded in the Journal.
Section 65. Action by the President. Every bill or joint resolution passed by Congress shall be presented to the President for approval. If the President approves the bill or joint resolution, the President shall sign it; otherwise, the President shall veto it and return the same to the House together with the specific objections. The President shall communicate the veto on any bill or joint resolution to the House within thirty (30) days after receipt thereof, otherwise, it shall become a law as if it was signed.
Section 66. Procedure on Vetoed Bills. If the President vetoes a bill or any part thereof, the House shall record the objections of the President in the Journal and may proceed to reconsider the bill or item(s) thereof that were vetoed. During reconsideration, the House shall proceed to nominal voting on the bill or the vetoed item(s) thereof. The affirmative and negative votes with the names of the Members voting shall be recorded in the Journal. If the bill or vetoed item is passed by a vote of two-thirds (2/3) of all Members of each House, the bill including item(s) thereof vetoed by the President shall become law.
Section 67. Procedure for Resolutions. Resolutions shall be subject to the same procedure as bills regarding introduction, reference to the appropriate committee, and consideration: Provided, That the Committee on Rules may calendar any resolution for immediate consideration by the House for reasons of urgency.
Section 68. Messages. Messages from the President of the Philippines and the Senate shall be reported to the House and when necessary, referred to the appropriate committees.
Section 69. Memorials and Petitions. Communications from heads of departments of the Executive and the Judiciary, memorials and petitions shall be reported to the House and, when necessary, referred to the appropriate committee(s).
SOURCE: Committee on Rules