Press Release
July 29, 2010

Legarda Bares Her Priority Legislative Agenda for 15th Congress

Senator Loren Legarda today revealed that the first 10 bills she filed for the 15th Congress are focused on agriculture; health; local government; just compensation for our teachers, kasambahays, nurses and men and women in uniform; our OFWs and the environment:

1. Senate Bill No. 4 is the assurance that especially indigent Filipinos who are more vulnerable to health risks be granted basic health care services because access to basic health care from government continues to be a problem.

2. Senate Bill No. 5 aims to reduce the prices of over 1,500 drug formulations because the existing law, Republic Act 9502 resulted to price reductions to merely 22 drug formations.

3. Senate Bill No. 6 calls on the adoption of a priority adaptation strategy from the provincial to the barangay level to green, rehabilitate and protect forest lands to prevent an ecosystem decline which will aggravate the impact of climate change.

4. Senate Bill No. 7 strongly recommends the pegging of the minimum wage for household helpers to P4,000 and requiring that all household working arrangements be in writing in a language or dialect understood by both the employer and household helpers.

5. Senate Bill No. 8 proposing the activation of a "Migrant Workers Hospital " exclusively for our Overseas Filipino Workers and their dependents which shall be under the supervision and control of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA).

6. Senate Bill No. 9 rousing a nationwide "Barangay Nutrition Program"

7. Senate Bill No. 10 strengthens Republic Act 4670, otherwise known as the Magna Carta for Public School Teachers through the introduction of the following amendments:

a. Payment of salaries of teachers as well as non-teaching personnel on a monthly basis regardless of semestral or summer vacations;
b. Annual salary increase or adjustment to mitigate the effects of inflation; and
c. Gratuity benefits for teachers and non-teaching personnel who choose to retire before reaching the compulsory retirement age of 60 and have rendered not less than two years of service

8. P. S. Resolution No. 3 urging the President of the Philippines to further adjust the existing Compensation and Position Classification System of the uniformed personnel in the military service, the police establishment and the teachers and nurses in the government service by increasing their compensation to two salary grades higher than what they are currently receiving.

9. Resolution No. 4 calling on the Secretaries of the Department of Interior and Local Government and Department of Budget and Management to address the issues regarding the appropriation of funds for the grant of mandated benefits to barangay officials.

"Section 393 of the Local Government Code of 1991 enumerates the benefits which the barangay officials are to receive including monthly allowance, Christmas bonus, matriculation fees for their dependent children and medical care. The Liga ng Barangays has been raising the issue of the non-allocation of their mandated benefits that is supposed to cushion the effects of the economic crisis. "

10. P. S. Resolution No. 5 inuring the safety of school children during earthquakes

Legarda concluded, " I will urge my colleagues in the Chamber to help me push for the immediate passage of these bills because these represent solutions to the problems of the vulnerable sectors of society."

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