A Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC) stalwart has proposed the inclusion of barangay officials as compulsory Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) members in recognition of their roles as a basic political unit with executive and judicial functions.
House Bill No. 5244, which Valenzuela City Congressman Win Gatchalian recently filed, seeks to amend the “Revised Government Service Insurance Act of 1997”, to make elected and appointed barangay officials compulsory members of the state pension system.
If Gatchalian’s H.B. 5244 is passed into law, barangay officials will receive the same insurance benefits to which regular government employees are entitled.
“The significant contributions and the importance of barangay officials justify the recognition that they rightly so deserve under this proposed measure. This bill recognizes the necessity to provide a remedy to the predicament of our barangay officials who, after their dedicated service to the government and their respective communities, are not entitled to receive benefits from the GSIS relating to their needs and those of their dependents in the event of sickness, disability, death, retirement, and other contingencies,” Gatchalian, a majority member of the House committee on local government, explained in his bill.
“By including our barangay officials as compulsory members of the GSIS, they will be able to reap and enjoy the social security and insurance benefits already afforded to other government employees,” he added.
In another bill, Gatchalian has proposed adding new benefits and increasing compensation for elected and appointed barangay officials by amending the Local Government Code of the Philippines.
“The provision in the Local Government Code enumerating the benefits and privileges for the barangay officials leave much to be desired. If we are to effectively give to the local government units the self-sufficiency that the government envisions, we must be able to provide the conditions conducive to a productive leadership,” said Gatchalian.
He added, “This bill proposes to fill in the inequities in the present law, providing for the much-needed benefits and privileges to our hard-working barangay officials.”
Under H.B. 5245, the “punong barangay”, sanggunian members, treasurer, secretary, and “lupong tagapamayapa” will be entitled to receive a standard P1,000 each for hazard pay, representation and transportation allowances (RATA), productivity incentive bonus, and yearly clothing allowance.
The bill also provides for honoraria, allowances, and other compensation to be increased to P5,000 from P1,000 monthly for punong barangay, P3,000 from P600 for the sangguniang barangay members, P3,000 for the Sangguniang Kabataan chair, barangay treasurer, and secretary.
On the other hand, each barangay tanod and lupong tagapamayapa will receive P2,000 a month. The bill also increases the Christmas bonus of barangay officials to at least P2,000 from P1,000. (Monica Cantilero)