Press Release
November 9, 2020

Senate Oks Coop Development Officer Bill

Senate OKs Coop Development Officer Bill 9 November 2020 The Senate has approved on third and final reading Senate Bill No. 1855, which seeks to amend the Local Government Code of 1991 to authorize the creation of the Cooperatives Development Officer (CDO) as a mandatory position in all local government units.

"The National Cooperative Month has just ended, but I hope the sector finds more reasons to celebrate with the approval of this bill," said Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, principal sponsor of the measure.

Under this bill, all provinces, cities, and municipalities will have a dedicated CDO, who will be in charge of assisting promising groups and sectors in organizing and forming their own cooperatives. CDOs will also bridge regional cooperatives with the Cooperative Development Authority and other national government agencies, in order to help them harmonize their goals with the national cooperative movement.

Local governments may choose to appoint a full-fledged CDO, or they may merge the responsibilities of a CDO with an existing position, should this be more feasible with respect to the size of the local cooperative sector, or the capability of the local government to carve out the proper emoluments from its budget.

"The cooperative sector is such a huge economic driver, especially in the countryside. We have over 28,000 registered cooperatives in the country, which is a good, healthy number, but I believe we can have an even more robust national cooperative movement if we strengthened government support for the sector," he said.

"Once we have CDOs in all our LGUs, we will be able to more easily reach communities in our most far-flung areas, and they will be able to deliver vital and immediate support on the grassroots level."

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