Press Release
July 26, 2020

Senate resumes session amid pandemic, PRRD to deliver SONA in hybrid joint session

The Senate will resume its session on Monday, July 27, to continue working on several priority measures for the Second Regular Session of the 18th Congress.

The Upper Chamber will open its morning hybrid session after which they will listen to President Rodrigo Duterte's 5th State of the Nation Address (SONA) as the country grapples with a crisis brought about by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Upon the resumption of the session, Sotto said the Senate is expected to pass the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act which was passed on second reading before the sine die adjournment last month.

The measure seeks to extend the powers granted to President Rodrigo Duterte under Republic Act No. 11469 to carry out national policies in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Two measures, which originated from the Department of Finance - the Financial Institution Strategic Transfer (FIST) and Government Financial Institutions Unified Initiatives to Distressed Enterprises for Economic Recovery (GUIDE) - will be prioritized by the Senate, Sotto said.

The Senate is also expected to pass the repackaged Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act (CREATE), formerly the Corporate Income Tax and Incentives Rationalization Act (CITIRA), to help businesses, especially micro, small and medium enterprises badly hit by the pandemic, rebuild, recover and retain jobs for their employees.

Other priority measures the Senate President is pushing are the Medical Scholarship Act, Presidential Drug Enforcement Authority Act, Hybrid Election Act, Anti-False Content Act and the 14th Month Pay law. The Senate will also tackle the Expanded Solo Parents Act, the Coconut Farmers and Industry Trust Fund Act, the Reserve Officers' Training Corps, the creation of the Department of Disaster Resilience, amendments to Public Service Act and the Agrarian or Agriculture Credit Cooperative Condonation Act, among others.

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