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SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau

28 September 2022 11:05:25 PM

Speaker Martin G. Romualdez on Wednesday took pride in the record
accomplishments of the House of Representatives in the first 23
session days of the 19th Congress, which convened last July 25.

Romualdez told his colleagues that since the start of their session,
“we rolled up our sleeves and worked hand in hand to ensure collective
and responsive action upon all pending bills and resolutions,
including priority bills in the legislative agenda of our President,
Ferdinand Marcos Jr.”

“Our mission from Day One is clear: Help resuscitate the
pandemic-battered economy and make economic transformation the main
engine to uplift the lives of the Filipino people,” he said in remarks
before the House adjourned its session for the first recess of

Before adjournment, the House approved on second and third and final
reading the proposed P5.268-trillion “Agenda for Prosperity” 2023
national budget, the most important legislative proposal Congress
tackles every year.

“With deep sense of urgency, combined with the detailed scrutiny from
our colleagues in the minority, and the tireless and unceasing
cooperation of our fellow civil servants from various agencies in the
Executive Department, we were also able to hammer out in no time the
best possible version for the approval on third reading of HB 4488, or
the proposed spending plan for 2023,” the Speaker said.

Romualdez said the House wrapped up its plenary budget deliberations
in just seven days.

He expressed confidence that “our good senators will also act with
dispatch in having this most important piece of legislation approved
in order for both houses to ratify the budget bill in time for
signature of the President before the end of the fiscal year.”

On its last session day, the House also ratified two bicameral
conference committee (bicam) reports - those on the proposed
Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) Card Registration Act and the
postponement of the December 2022 barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan
elections (BSKE) – that will soon be transmitted to Malacañang for
President Marcos’ signature.

Aside from the budget bill and the two bicam reports, comparative data
from the House committee on rules showed that the House of
Representatives passed on third reading 37 national bills, a
106-percent increase over the 18 measures approved on final reading by
the 18th Congress and 517 percent higher compared to six measures
approved on third reading during the 17th Congress over the same

The House processed a total of 427 measures, 96 percent more than the
218 tackled by the 18th Congress and 104% higher than the 209 measures
discussed during the 17th Congress.

The number of bills the larger chamber handled per session day
averaged 19, versus 11 in the previous Congress, or an improvement of
70 percent and 246 percent better than 5 recorded during the 17th

Romualdez recalled that shortly after the 19th Congress convened in
July, the House adopted Concurrent Resolution No. 2, which supported
the 2022-2028 Medium Term Fiscal Framework of the national government.

“The adoption by Congress of the MTFF concurrent resolution is a
historic one. To my knowledge, this is the first time our legislators
fully committed themselves to a medium-term fiscal plan that will
serve as anchor for the annual spending and financial plan of the
national government,” he said.

He said the MTFF would serve as Congress’s guide in preparing the
annual budget and prioritizing other measures for the next six years.

“Yet, in that period, a greater number of measures - totaling five
thousand six hundred and ninety-six (5,696) - were filed by our
Members, showing clear passion and dedication to their constituents
and their advocacies,” Romualdez said.

He said the House also adopted 20 resolutions, approved 37 measures on
third reading, 11 bills approved on second reading, and reported out
63 committee reports.

He stressed that each colleague of his “exemplifies the fair and
equitable response of the House of Representatives to the needs of the
Filipino people, as we resonate to the clamor that in unity, there is

Romualdez also reported on last week’s visit to the United States of
President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., which he and House Senior
Deputy Majority Leader and Ilocos Norte Rep. Ferdinand Alexander
“Sandro” A. Marcos joined.

“We are happy to report that we made a solid and strong investment
pitch to members of the United States business community that the
Philippine House of Representatives remains committed to enact laws
that would help deepen cooperation with the United States,
particularly in the areas of the supply chain, health and security,
environment and climate change, energy security, and
interconnectivity,” he said

The Speaker exhorted House members to “continue to work hard, as we
always do, for all the equally important pending measures that require
our undivided attention.”(END)