Salaries, benefits for barangay execs, workers eyed

Barangay officials and volunteers would soon find themselves with better future as Joseller “Yeng” Guiao, who is making a comeback in Congress, is pushing for a law that will grant more benefits to our frontline government workers. 

This will include regular salary, hospitalization, retirement and other benefits for members of the Barangay Council, tanods and other workers – albeit a much improved version of the bill he filed in the House of Representatives when he was Congressman of First District of Pampanga in 2016. 

“My proposal will always be there and it is meant to give due recognition to barangay officials and workers who often give the best years of their lives to public service,” 

Under his previous original proposal, Guiao is proposing that Barangay Chairmen should get Fifteen Thousand Pesos (P15,000.00) for every year of service while Barangay Councilors should receive Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00) for every year of service as retirement benefits.

For the salary, he is pushing to base it on the existing regulation which pegs honoria of Brgy Captains based on Salary Grade 14 (P 23-27 thousands per month) and Salary Grade 10 (P 16-19 thousand per month) for Kagawads, depending on the size of the Barangay, to be adjusted accordingly. He likewise proposes that appointed brgy officials be accorded benefits based on the most recent salary standardization law for their equivalent responsibilities.

The barangay, as the basic political entity, serves as the front-line unit in the delivery of government services especially to the most remote areas of the country, he said.

“Likewise, the barangay serves as the primary and implementing unit of government programs and projects. These and other important functions of the barangay, are executed and implemented by barangay officials, who, as grassroots leaders render their services and risk their lives in carrying out their responsibilities,” Rep. Guiao explained.

On the matter of administration of the proposed retirement system, his previous bill provides that within (60) sixty day from approval of this Act, the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) shall establish and administer an appropriate system under which barangay officials shall be paid their retirement benefits.

It also mandates that the GSIS shall undertake actuarial study to determine the funding requirement for the operation and maintenance of the retirement system. The amount so determined shall be initially charged to the appropriations of the Department of the Interior and Local Government under the current General Appropriations Act.

Thereafter, he added, such sum as may be necessary for the continued operation and maintenance of the retirement system shall be included in the annual budget of the municipality or city to which the barangay belongs.

Furthermore, the initial appropriations provided by the DILG and the subsequent annual budgets provided by the municipal and city governments for the operation and maintenance of the retirement system, shall be released to the GSIS.

“Payment of benefits shall be made not later than six (6) months after an official’s separation from service. Provided, That this provision shall not apply to Barangay Officials with pending administrative or criminal cases,” the bill also provides.

Guiao also clarified that “nothing shall be construed as to diminish, in any way, any existing benefits provided by laws, rules and regulations, local ordinances or any other issuances to barangay officials.”