BIR, NHA biggest losers in 2014 budget

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The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and the National Housing Authority (NHA) are the biggest losers in the proposed P2.268 trillion budget for 2014, losing at least P10 billion each compared with their 2013 budget.

The Budget Comparison Tables provided by the Congressional Policy and Budget Research Department showed that the BIR suffered the biggest budget cut at P11.77 billion, or 60.4-percent decrease compared with its 2013 share. Commissioner Kim Henares would then have to make do with its P11.77 billion in 2014 from having P19.4 billion in 2013.

The BIR’s budget for Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE) was greatly affected with a 78.2 percent decrease, settling for P3.16 billion in 2014 from P14.5 billion in 2013. The bureau’s Capital Outlay, on the other hand, was decimated by almost a half at P538 million for 2014 from P1 billion this year. However, its Personnel Services budget was only slightly reduced to P3.8 billion in 2014 from P3.9 billion in 2013.

Henares earlier announced that the BIR is already investigating businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles who is accused of benefiting from the P10 billion Priority Development Assistance Fund over the last decade through her bogus non-government organizations (NGOs).

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Joining the BIR in the biggest loser circle is NHA which only has P10.95 billion for 2014 as compared to its P21.37 billion 2013 budget. The entire allocation, which was sourced from the Special Purpose Fund, is for its MOOE since the Aquino administration did not reserve any budget for its Personnel Services and Capital Outlay.

Rounding up the top 10 government agencies or items which took the largest budget cuts in 2014 are Bureau of Customs (lost P6.76 billion), Commission on Elections (P5.53 billion), National Mapping and Resource Information (P1.95 billion), Net Lending (P1.55 billion), Department of Agrarian Reform-Office of the Secretary (P1.05 billion), Agricultural Credit Policy Council (P97 million), Department of Tourism-Office of the Secretary (P73 million) and the National Statistics Office (P68 million).

Llanesca T. Panti

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