Like senators, House members got more funds last Christmas

Philippine legislators vote for the Reproductive Health Bill (RH) in Manila on December 17, 2012. Philippine Catholic leaders have vowed to overturn a birth control bill after lawmakers passed landmark legislation to make sex education and contraceptives more widely available

Like senators, House members also got additional funds last Christmas, a lawmaker revealed Wednesday. AN WARAY party-list Rep. Florencio Noel, chairperson of the House accounts committee, said each House member got half a million pesos last December for maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE) The lawmaker made this disclosure amid reports that Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile gave some senators additional funds, amounting to P1.6 million. Noel said the funds disbursed last month was around double the regular MOOE funds each House member receives per month, which he pegs at P287,000. He added that the amount went to the 13th month pay, bonuses and transportation allowances of members of the legislative staff. Noel likewise said that this practice has been done since the Speakership of Prospero Nograles, who led the lower chamber from February 2008 to June 2010. “’Yung practice na ‘yan was Nogie [Nograles’ nickname] time pa, although at that time, mas maliit pa,” Noel said. — DVM, GMA News