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[ 28 Dec 2013 | No Comment ]
PRESS STATEMENT
December 27, 2013
Reference: ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio Tinio (0920-9220817)

ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio Tinio sent the following communication to Department of Education Secretary Br. Armin Luistro today following concerns raised by public school teachers in Tacloban City and Leyte province that the 6-month moratorium on loan payments of members to Government Financial Institutions such as GSIS and Pag-IBIG had not been implemented for their November and December salaries:

Dear Sec. Luistro,

Teachers of the Tacloban City Division and Leyte Division have brought it to my attention that the 6-month moratorium of Government Financial Institutions on loan payments for their members in areas worst-hit by Typhoon Yolanda, as provided for in Malacañang’s Memorandum Circular No. 59, dated Nov. 26, 2013, has not been implemented for their November and December salaries.

Specifically, monthly loan payments to GSIS and Pag-IBIG are apparently still being deducted.

For its part, even before the issuance of the Memorandum Circular, GSIS announced that:

The pension fund is granting a six-month loan moratorium on all outstanding loans of its hardest-hit members to enable them to use the deferred payments on their GSIS loans for rebuilding their homes and other urgent needs.

Loans covered under the moratorium include consolidated loans, housing loans, policy loans, and eCash Advances. The loan moratorium will be extended from November 2013 to April 2014. The payment for existing loans of members will thus resume in May next year. [http://www.gsis.gov.ph/news.php?id=371]

I understand that implementing the said moratorium may require additional administrative work and the overcoming of technical constraints. However, it is clear that the moratorium will indeed provide urgently-needed relief to thousands of Deped teachers and employees in the calamity-stricken areas. Needless to say, the moratorium should include not just Eastern Visayas but all other areas badly-hit by Typhoon Yolanda.

I hope that your office can ensure implementation of the said moratorium at the soonest possible time.

Para sa guro, kawani, at bayan,

Rep. Antonio L. Tinio
ACT Teachers

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[ 19 Dec 2013 | No Comment ]

PRESS RELEASE

19 December 2013

Reference: ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio L. Tinio (09209220817)

 

Militant solon Antonio Tinio welcomed today Senator Sonny Angara’s push for laws for greater tax relief for lower- and middle- income earners, despite opposition from Malacañang as voiced by Bureau of Internal Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares.

Angara chairs the Senate’s Ways and Means Committee.

Said Tinio, “The Senate is making a vital and timely endorsement of the demand of  workers and employees to take home more of their incomes.”

“Giving tax breaks to lower- and middle- income earners is one sure way to redistribute wealth and address the glaring income inequality prevailing in society,” added Tinio.

He challenged Angara’s counterpart in the House of Representatives, Marikina 2nd District Rep. Miro Quimbo, to take a similar stand and immediately set for hearings proposals that will raise the tax exemptions and lower income tax rates.

This includes Tinio’s House Bill 247, “An Act Increasing the Allowance for Personal Exemption for Individual Taxpayers, Amending for the Purpose Section 35 (A) and (B) of Republic Act 8424, or the National Internal Revenue Code,” and House Bill 248, “An Act Increasing the Ceiling for the Total Exclusion from Gross Income of 13th Month Pay and Other Benefits to P60,000, Amending for the Purpose Section 32 (B)(7)(e) of the National Internal Revenue Code.”

If enacted, HB 247 will raise the basic personal exemption granted to all taxpayers from P50,000 to P75,000 and the additional exemption from P25,000 per dependent to P40,000.  HB 248, on the other hand, will raise from P30,000 to P60,000 the ceiling of exempted bonuses and benefits such as the 13th month pay. ###

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[ 16 Dec 2013 | No Comment ]

PRESS RELEASE

15 December 2013

Reference: ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio L. Tinio (09209220817)

A massive lay-off will be President Aquino’s Christmas gift to DepEd employees.

 

This is what ACT Teachers solon Antonio Tinio revealed, with the issuance in December 3 of the rules implementing DepEd’s rationalization plan (RatPlan), which, within four months, will trim down the largest department in government.

 

The RatPlan requires DepEd to come up with a new staffing pattern for its central, regional, and division offices, with less or equal positions than the current roster.  Positions in excess of the new roster will be declared non-vital or redundant.

 

Deped has yet to disclose the number of affected permanent and non-permanent personnel.  However, a DepEd official estimated that about 10,000 regular, casual, and contractual non-teaching personnel, administrative officers, nurses, janitors, and other employees nationwide will be affected by the en masse lay-off.

 

Tinio questions DepEd’s hurried implementation of the plan, which DBM approved on November 15.  Employees from several divisions have complained they were not even fully apprised of what will happen before being told of getting the axe.  Under the implementing rules, yesterday, December 15, all casuals and contractuals were effectively fired with the abolition of their positions, except those qualified to retire.  Regulars have until January 15 only to choose either “co-terminus with the incumbent” status or early retirement.

 

“Hindi makakatulong ang pagmamadaling ito sa karaniwang kawani lalo na’t papasok na ang Pasko’t bagong taon,” Tinio argued.  “Panibagong delubyo rin ito para sa mga nasalanta ng Yolanda at iba pang bagyo pati na rin ang naapektuhan sa stand-off sa Zamboanga.”

 

Tinio urged Education Secretary Armin Luistro to, at the minimum, issue a moratorium against the RatPlan to give time to the affected employees to adjust.

 

“But scrapping the plan is Bro. Armin’s most humane course, as a massive lay-off is contrary to the sector’s demand for higher salaries, security of tenure, and additional positions.”

 

Tinio added that the lay-off plan will pave the way for contractualization of some services necessary to education, and warned that it will cause more overwork to teachers.  “Isa itong porma ng pagtitipid ng gubyerno sa isang pangunahing serbisyo-sosyal, dahil hindi na niya kailangang swelduhan kada taon ang libu-libong kawaning may complementary functions sana sa pangunahing function ng ahensya.”

 

Starting Monday, teaching and non-teaching personnel under the banner of the Alliance of Concerned Teachers will be holding protests in the Central and Division offices of DepEd. ###