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Sotto signs budget bill 'with reservations'

BY RAYIIIOND AFRIGA incolporated a note that says my He said it is now up to the by dre Housc t>f fuprcscntativcs propriat.ions Bill," he said. night.
signature is in reference to my at- Executive Department to identifi' after the bicamcral comrnittee Sotto said he came to a decision The GAB was tra"flsmittc(l t{, the
iENATE President Vicente Sotto tached annotations," Sotto said in "pork ' allocations which could be ratiEed the budgct bill, including to sign the GAB on the advice of Malacaflang beforc noon yct I c r.r Lty.
II yesterday decided to.break the hastily called press confetence at vetoed by the President. the realignmcnt of somc P75 bil- Senators Ddlon, Lacson, Zubiri. "The bottom line is I signfll rhe
,udget impasse by signing the the Senate. In a letter sent to Presidentr lion rvorth of projects uutlcr thc Ralph Recto, Gregorio Honasan, narional budget as no crrr.rrllctl bill
iencral Appropriations Bill but In attendance duting the press Duterte to explain his resewations, local infrastructurc progtam of and Loren Legarda who talked to to be presented to rhc Prclirlcnt
larified he did so with "sffong conference wete Senate majodty the Department of Public \?<rrks
Softo said he attests to the veracity him Monday night. but attesting t() ooly lhc (:(xltcflts
eservations," leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, Senate the (rl.lD
of Inc
or GAB w'rucn wat ntified
which wap Dy
fauaeo by
and Highways.
Htghways. Upon Sotto's apptoval, Lacson of what ve have ratificd lurl what
lle also appealed to President minority leader Franklin Drilon, the bicameral conferer{ce commir- He said the P75 billion tcaligned called up Rep. Rona.ldo Zaraoa on we have agreed upon duriog rhe
)utcrte to veto the "unconstitu- and Sen. Panfrlo Lacson. tee last February 8. appropriations form part of the Monday night to inform Speaker bicam," Sotto said.
onal" ptovisions. Sotto said he decided to sgn the "My atrcstation is lmited only Loral of P95 billion worth ,rf re- Gloria Arroyo of the senators' Sotto said the Senate has dc t uilcd
"W'e are informing you that I GAB so as not hold hostage the to those items approved by the alignments. coosensus to and request-the realigned appropriations frrr the
ave alteady signed the entolled whole proposed P3.767-trillion bicameral conference comtnittee 'The President may wish to con- House to send back to the Sen- President to scrutinize.
opy, It is now going to be an .budget for 2019 because only and ratified by both house of sider disapproving these unconsti- ate *re budget booLs the House Drilon said dris is the 6rst tirne
nrolled bill to be signed by the two to dree percent of the entire Congress," Sotto said. tutional realignments, pu$uant to retdeved last sreek. in the history of the country rhat
tesident but I placed my teser- budget is being questioned by the He said he views as "uncon- his constitutional power to veto The budget books were sent
ltioos on the signature. I have Senate- stitutional" all realignments done particuldr items in the Genetal Ap- back to the Senate also Monday See SOfiO ) lhj{r Il3

SOTTO sign the GAB but it does not sel Salvadot Panelo said President Panelo also said Malacaiang I

mean that the Senate agrees to Duterte would review the budget is happy that tl-re Senate and the
a Senate president srgned the GAB the changes made by the House) bill before deciding to sign ir into House of Representatives finally
vith teservations. It is also the 6rst after the ratification of the bicam law or exercise his right to l.ine veto, setded tl.reir differdnces,
time that a bicameral-approved repoit because we maintain the or veto it completely. Government has been operat-
GAB was amended. view that this is unconstitutional, Panelq concurrent presidential ing on a reacted budget since
'\X4rat the Senate president said but we must find a solution to spokesman, said he does not know Januaty because of allegations and
was pirmahan niya ang GAB pero the impasse in the budget and how long the Presideflt will study counter-allegations of insetions
hindi ibig sabihin na sumasang- serve the interestof the nation," the GAB but "if it is consistent and realignments exchanged by
ayon ang Senado dito sa ginawang Dtilon said. with the Constitution, he will the Senate and the Ho:use.
pagbabago ng House ( would
Chief Presidential Legal Coun- slgn it." Jocebn Montct taJ,ol

I Trec,dr PAW tl