Senate approves Bicam Conference Committee Report on the 2011 National Budget
On 13 December 2010, the Senate, upon motion of the Senate Committee on Finance Chair Senator Franklin Drilon, approved the Bicameral Conference Committee Report on the 2011 National Budget. The approved Report, which was the consolidation of the efforts of the House of Representatives and the Senate, features mainly an increase in the budgets of eighty (80) state universities and colleges (SUCs), the Office of the Vice-President, and increase in the subsidies to local government units, among others.
The budget of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) for its Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) Program was untouched, which means that the proposed major amendment of Senator Bongbong Marcos on this 2011 budget allocation was rejected. His other proposals though were approved, such as the inclusion of safety provisions on service contracts and on the allocation for Mindanao. Senator Bongbong Marcos earlier proposed a reduction in the budget allocation for the CCT program in order to give way for increases in the budget of SUCs, and agriculture and irrigation programs.
Another major amendment in the proposed 2011 national budget is the decrease in the allocation for the senators’ Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), pejoratively known as the “pork barrel”.