House realigns  ₱9.52 billion in proposed 2020 national budget

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 30) — The House of Representatives realigned ₱9.52 billion in the ₱4.1 trillion proposed national budget for next year.

House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano said the lawmakers moved funding allocations from the Department of Public Works and Highways and the Commission on Elections "to increase the budgets of 12 government agencies."

"We put minimal changes, ₱9.52 billion. This is more of symbolic change to give the proper direction of where the budget should be going," Cayetano said in a press briefing Monday.

READ: Cayetano seeks 2020 budget realigment to increase funds for health, education

The following are the changes in the proposed 2020 national budget made by the House of Representatives:

- Department of Agriculture: ₱3.5 billion to buy rice from local farmers for quick response

- Department of Education: ₱800 million for the operation of schools (K-12) and day care centers

- Department of Health: ₱200 million for the National Center for Mental Health and its quick response fund

- University of the Philippines-Philippine General Hospital: ₱200 million for medical services and its quick response fund

- Department of Interior and Local Government: ₱1 billion for the Philippine National Police camp development fund

- Department of National Defense: ₱1 billion, with ₱100 million for Armed Forces of the Philippines camp development fund

- Department of Environment and Natural Resources - ₱500 million for the conservation and development of protected areas

- Department of Transportation - ₱274.95 million for the Davao International Airport

- National Electrification Administration - ₱500 million

- Metro Manila Development Authority - ₱500 million for special allowances and salary increases

- Dangerous Drugs Board - ₱250 million for community-based rehabilitation centers

- Philippine Sports Commission - ₱500 million to train athletes for the 2020 Olympic games and the 10th ASEAN Para games

Cayetano maintained that there is no pork barrel nor illegal insertions in the 2020 National Budget bill passed by the House of Representatives.

"I can guarantee na walang pork. I cannot guarantee na walang magkakalat ng tsismis," Cayetano said.

[Translation: I can guarantee that there is no pork. I cannot guarantee that no one will spread rumors.]

Asked on the allegations of Senator Ping Lacson that there are still illegal insertions in the House budget bill, Cayetano said that he will not respond to rumors.

READ: Lacson vows to fight until his last breath alleged 'pork barrel' in 2020 appropriations bill