DBM to tap 3rd party to study wage hike options for 2020-2022

By Joann Villanueva

January 9, 2019, 11:34 am

MANILA -- The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) is set to hire a third party that will study wage increase of government workers for 2020 until 2022.

“There will be (a wage increase), not (just) a possibility. But how much (the increase will be) is not yet determined,” Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said in a briefing Wednesday.

The planned wage hike comes as the fourth and last tranche of the Salary Standardization Law (SSL) of 2015 is yet to be implemented this year pending Congress' approval of this year’s proposed PHP3.757-trillion national budget.

Diokno, in an interview, said bidding for the entity that will be hired to do the study on the salary increase will be done “sometime (in the) first quarter.”

“A committee is working on it,” he said.

Asked for the reason for the three-year period for the wage adjustment, the Budget and Management chief said “this is what we want.”

“I think three years is an optimal period,” he said, citing that it will be hard to predict developments beyond this period.

The hikes in state workers’ salaries are targeted to bring the level near that of the private sector.

Meanwhile, Diokno said the DBM cannot implement the scheduled wage hike this year because the Executive Order (EO) No. 201 issued in 2016 for this purpose “explicitly provides that we need a GAA (General Appropriations Act),”

“Plus, the amount involve does not allow us that flexibility and we don’t want to be committing errors,” he said.

“The best solution really is to get the budget passed,” he added. (PNA)