THE resolution proposing to increase the base salary of military and uniformed personnel (MUP) was approved on third and final reading at the Senate.
Senate Joint Resolution II, introduced by Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, Panfilo Lacson, Gregorio Honasan II and Cynthia Villar, seeks to double the base pay of MUPs starting January next year and calls for a review of the salary scheme of civilian personnel.
Honasan, chairman of the Senate Committee on National Defense and Security and sponsor of the resolution, said that once the joint resolution is enacted into law, the base salary of all military and police personnel, including jail guards, firemen, coast guards and those under the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority and the Philippine Public Safety College would double.
“The President has repeatedly made promises of higher salaries to the military and the police personnel. In support of this commitment, this joint resolution, if enacted into law, would double the MUPs’ base pay,” Honasan said in his sponsorship speech.
He cited a Department of Budget and Management report which showed that the compensation package would result in an average increase of 58.7 percent for all MUPs.
A joint resolution, like a bill, requires the approval of both houses and the signature of the President. It has the force and effect of a law once approved by the President.
“Let me emphasize that under existing laws, the base pay schedule of military and uniformed personnel or the MUP was last increased eight years ago,” Honasan said.
Increase in compensation, according to Honasan, would encourage civilians to join the service, thereby improving the recruitment process and reinvigorating public service.
Meanwhile, the Senate also adopted Resolution No.575, authored by Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon and Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III, to adjust the base pay of civilian personnel.
Drilon said the resolution sought to prevent the discrepancy and distortion in the salary structure of civilian personnel.
The resolution aims to bring the salary of civilian personnel closer to their military and uniformed personnel counterparts, whose base pay will be raised starting 2018, and Drilon cautioned that the increase in the base pay of the MUP could distort the current pay structure in the government.
Drilon explained that as a result of the increase in the base pay of the uniformed personnel, the salary of entry-level personnel in the miltary would surpass the salaries currently received by some professionals in the bureaucracy including lawyers, nurses, teachers and doctors.
“The base pay for civilian personnel with salary grade 11 shall be raised to the same level of a private, Fire/Jail Officer I, Police Officer I, and Apprentice Seaman/Seaman Third Class provided under this Resolution,” Drilon said.