Press Release
November 25, 2006


The Senate has delivered on its commitment to pass economic and social reform measures, which are crucial to sustaining the governments effort to resuscitate the economy and promote political stability in the country.

Senate President Villar stressed this point today as he report the Senates record performance over the last four months, during which twenty-four measures were approved on third and final reading. There are 8 bills already enacted into laws, while 11 bills are awaiting presidential signature.

Local bills from the House of Representatives have likewise hurdled the Senate legislative mill.

Villar said the approval of these national and local bills proved that "ours is a functioning Senate, a bulwark of democracy in this country."

He said this is contrary to critics contention that the Senate was dragging its feet in the performance of its lawmaking duties.

"The Senate has made the grade with flying colors," Senate President Villar said.

"Were just warming up; expect more meaningful legislation to come out of the Senate mill," he said. The lineup of bills of national importance approved by the Senate is topbilled by the P46.4 billion Supplemental Budget for 2006 which is now Republic Act 9358. It also approved an accompanying measure providing for a P850 million Standby Fund for the Clean Up of the Guimaras Oil Spill, the Relief Operations for the Victims of the Eruption of Mayon Volcano and for the Emergency Repatriation, Evacuation and Relief of Overseas Filipinos Workers and other Filipino Nationals in Lebanon and other affected countries in the Middle East, which is Republic Act 9359.

The priority measures approved on third and final reading are the following: Senate Bill 1745 or the Compensation to the Victims of Human Rights Violations Bill; SB 2226 or the Biofuels Act of 2006; SB 2231 or the Automated Election System Act of 2206; SB 2482 or the Act Regulating the Placement of Billboard Signs.

Senate Bill 5742 Amending Section 110 (b) of the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997 on Input VAT, which restored the 100 percent input VAT; SB 1972 Declaring May 7 of every year as Health Workers Day; and Senate Resolution 108, Concurrence to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC).

Among the local measures approved on third and final reading which are now Republic Acts are the following: RA 9353 amending the cityhood charter of Sipalay, Negros Occidental; RA 9355 creating the province of Dinagat Islands; RA 9356 converting Meycauayan, Bulacan into a component city; RA 9357 reapportioning the province of Sultan Kudarat into two legislative districts; RA 9360 creating another congressional district in the province of Zamboanga Sibugay.

House Bill 5500 converting the municipality of Navotas into a city and HB 4078 reapportioning Marikina City into two legislative districts were likewise approved by the Senate on third and final reading.

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