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Include gov’t salary raise in 2015 budget – Drilon

Senate President Franklin M. Drilon yesterday urged the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to hasten its review of salaries of government employees so that an increase may be included in the proposed 2015 national budget.

Drilon said the government should consider raising the salaries of all government workers including policemen and soldiers as it drafts the proposed General Appropriations Act for 2015.

The Senate leader said the government should study how it can increase the salary rates of all government employees.

“I have requested the DBM to expedite its analysis, so that if possible, we can already put into effect the new version of the Salary Standardization Law and we can include the required budget in the 2015 national expenditures program, which we will approve at the end of this year,” Drilon said.

“That way, all public employees can already enjoy their new wages starting next year,” he said.

Drilon said raising the salary scheme in government will provide the biggest morale boost for state workers and give them continued inspiration to excel in their works.

“But more importantly, we can attract more competent and dedicated professionals, especially the youth, to work in government and help craft policies and programs that will benefit our people,” said Drilon, noting that in 2013, there were 1,205,375 government employees.

Drilon said he believes that improved government collection in the past years could provide the government ample funds to capacitate a new Salary Standardization Law.

He said with the kind of fiscal discipline being observed by the administration for the past years, he believes it is possible to raise government wages without negatively affecting the country’s budget deficit.

“It is highly important that we help government workers as prices for everyday essentials such as rice or vegetables go up,” he said.

“Our policy makers must ceaselessly look at parts of the National Budget which could permit and put into action sustainable salary augmentation, in a manner that would help our workers, yet would not result in budgetary deficit or decreases in other important sectors such as social and health services,” he emphasized.

He also said that improvements in the compensation of policemen and other law enforcers would help drive up recruitment, enabling the state to field more police officers who would protect the public.

Earlier, President Benigno Aquino III had acknowledged that more police officers are needed amid many reports of crime in the nation.

“One good effect of increasing the salary of our government workers is that it can help us fill in the numbers as far as more policemen or soldiers are concerned,” the Senate leader said.