Lacson will pursue a zero budget system to help communities

Cecille Suerte Felipe – Star from the Philippines

October 10, 2021 | 00h00

MANILA, Philippines – Senator Panfilo Lacson yesterday promised to pursue a zero-based budgeting system in government if he wins the presidential race in 2022.

Lacson said the system would give government agencies some degree of flexibility when spending taxpayer money.

“Zero-based budgeting is a method of financial planning in which all expenses must be justified for each new fiscal year. It is the same process applied by the managers of most successful private companies, ”he said.

Lacson, president and standard-bearer of Partido Reporma, said reforming the national budget process would contribute to the development of remote villages and municipalities.

“This is aimed at avoiding future wastage of public funds due to unused credits or insufficient expenditure of up to more than 400 billion pesos, as most of the agencies under the executive branch operate with a budget cap,” he said. he adds.

Lacson said budget ceilings are imposed by the Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) under the Budget and Management Department, which often overlooks the needs of small communities when submitting the national spending program.

“We have observed that for so many years – and I am determined (to address this concern) because year after year I enjoy reviewing and examining the national budget – a lot of money is wasted under the regime. general Appropriations Act, ”Lacson said.

“For example, the Ministry of Public Works and Highways receives 600 billion pesos to spend for next year. You are working within this budget cap. For me, this is wrong. When you impose a budget cap, planning will be done in a rush. This shouldn’t be our approach, ”he said.

Lacson said he would encourage more citizens through their barangay officials to participate in their local development councils, down to regional branches of DBCC so that they can come up with useful projects that can be included in the budget. national.

In this way, the system would be better organized and the irregularities in the practice of budget insertions would be corrected. Budget insertions have gained a bad reputation as some corrupt politicians have exploited this process to steal public funds through private contractors, he said.

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