Restoration of budget cuts in CUS demanded by young Solon – Manila Bulletin

A House (HR) resolution that calls for reinstatement of budget cuts made to State Universities and Colleges (SUC) under the 5.268 trillion peso General Appropriations Bill (GAB) for 2023 was tabled on Wednesday, September 21 by a solon from Makabayan.

Representatives Manuel, Brosas and Castro are joined by student leaders in the tabling of the House resolution (House Media-Makabayan)

Tabling the measure was Kabataan party list representative Raoul Manuel. He did so alongside fellow solon activists Gabriela Women’s Party-list Rep. Arlene Brosas and ACT-Teachers Rep. France Castro.

The Manuel resolution noted that 81 CUS will experience overall budget cuts.

“In the proposed national budget for 2023, SUCs receive a total budget of 93.08 billion pesos (93,084,429,000 pesos), a decrease of 10.89 billion pesos (10,894,581,000) or 10.48 % compared to this year’s 103.97 billion pesos (103 pesos). 979,010,000),” says the resolution.

One SUC, Marikina Polytechnic College, originally had a budget of P1,150,702,000 under the General Appropriations Act 2022 (GAA). In the NEP 2023, it saw an 80.92% budget cut, bringing it down to P219,602,000. This is a decrease of P931,100,000.

“Cuts to operating costs will negatively impact SUCs ability to safely reopen their campuses for full face-to-face classes amid the Covid-19 pandemic. SUCs have also been given limited fiscal space for capital expenditures which they strive to raise with their own revenue-generating sources,” Manuel wrote in his resolution.

The legislation also provides for additional funds to be allocated to help with the safe reopening of schools.

“There is also a need to provide immediate additional funding to further facilitate the safe reopening of schools through funding for proper ventilation of learning spaces, on-campus health facilities and supplies, hiring of human resources for health, support for private educational institutions, medical fund for free treatment, internet allowance for teachers, devices for teachers, compensation for work done in excess of teaching hours and additional compensation for extracurricular activities, hazard pay for teachers and educational staff, and student aid,” the resolution continues.

During the drop-off, the solons were accompanied by SUC student leaders, namely: Siegfried Sevrino from the University of the Philippines (UP) System-UP Los Banos, Albiean Reyalde from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), Latrell Felix from UP-Diliman, Jonas Abadilla from UP-Diliman and Kairo Co from Makati University.

“If our [SUCs] are expected to perform their duties, they must be funded accordingly,” he added.

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