THE Senate and the House of Representatives ratified on Tuesday night the bicameral conference committee report approving the P3.7 trillion 2018 budget.
The budget bill will be sent to the Palace to be signed by President Rodrigo Duterte before Christmas.
In the ratified bill, the P900 million fund for the drug war of the Philippine National Police (PNP) was re-aligned to the acquisition of two single-engine helicopters worth P451 million and housing for members of the PNP and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). Also, P334 million was allocated for the purchase of body cameras for the police force. An additional P62 billion was set aside for the increase of military and uniformed personnel’s (MUP) base pay.
House Committee on Appropriations chairman Rep. Karlo Nograles said P40 billion will be set aside for the free college education program. Ralph Edwin U. Villanueva