Senate to pass legislation giving Duterte authority in curbing red tape

By: Consuelo Marquez - Inquirer.net | September 20,2020 - 08:47 AM

MANILA, Philippines —  The Senate will create legislation that allows President Rodrigo Duterte to temporarily stop time frames under the Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) which will ease processing time for doing business in government, two senators said Saturday.

In an interview over radio station DWIZ, Senate President Vicente Sotto II said they thought of crafting a bill  “without necessarily” amending the ease of doing business law.

“In so many words ay bibigyan ng authority ang Presidente na baguhin yung mga system itself. We can do that through a law without necessarily amending the ease of doing business so siguro antayin muna yung i-da-draft,” Sotto said, responding to a query about the Senate’s move on Duterte’s request to add more teeth on ease of doing business law.

(In so many words, we will give the President authority to change the systems itself. We can do that through a law without necessarily amending the Ease of doing business so maybe we must wait for our draft.)

This decision was crafted during a meeting with Minority Senate Leader Franklin Drilon, Senator Miguel Zubiri, Senator Panfilo Lacson and Senator Ralph Recto, Sotto also said.

In another statement, Senator Panfilo Lacson said they are specifically looking into giving Duterte the authority to suspend time frames under the ARTA, which supposedly has longer processing time for business transactions in government.

“We agreed that instead of further amending the law, it would be more practical and expeditious to pass another legislation to authorize the President to suspend the time frames specified under the ARTA since we are still under a state of health emergency,” Lacson said.

In a separate text message to INQUIRER.net, Lacson said it takes five days for processing time of simple government transactions while it takes seven days for complex transactions.

For the Ease of Doing Business Act, meanwhile, it takes three, seven and even 20 days to process bureaucratic paperwork but it could still be extended to another 20 days.

“Under EODB, it’s 3, 7, 20 but allows the LGU through their Sanggunians to pass or approve board resolutions  45 days, extendible to another 20 days,” Lacson, one of the principal authors and sponsors of ARTA, said.

Meanwhile, Sotto said he will present this development to Duterte as well as House of Representatives leaders to pass a bill in relation to curbing red tape in government.

Sotto said he is eyeing to pass the legislation before Oct. 15.

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TAGS: ARTA, curbing red tape, Duterte authority, Senate to pass legislation

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