Duterte vetoes expanded survivorship benefits bill

MANILA- President Rodrigo Duterte has vetoed a bill expanding survivorship benefits to dependents of deceased retired officials of constitutional offices.

Duterte, in his veto letter, expressed apprehensions that the proposed measure may be “too onerous to the government.”

“I am apprehensive that the provisions granting benefits beyond the current compensation framework for other government offices may prove to be too onerous to the government,” the President said in his veto letter to the House of the Representatives and the Senate last April 12.

The proposed measure seeks to amend Republic Act 10084 which only grants benefits to surviving legitimate spouses of deceased retired officials of the Commission on Audit (COA), Civil Service Commission (CSC), Commission on Elections (Comelec) and the Ombudsman.

Under the new bill, benefits will be extended to dependent children of deceased solo parents, and surviving parents or nominated persons of deceased retirees of the said constitutional offices.

The President explained that new benefits introduced in the bill would “erode” the government’s thrust to standardize the current compensation framework in the bureaucracy.

It would also “create too much disparity and inequality” in the pay of public servants since the additional benefits proposed are “extraordinary benefits that are not granted to any government official under the current government compensation framework,” Duterte said.

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