Posts Tagged ‘wages’

Republic of the Philippines
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Quezon City

FIFTEENTH CONGRESS

Second Regular Session

 

HOUSE RESOLUTION No. _1939_

Filed November 24, 2011/3:00 pm

Introduced by:  REP. TEDDY A. CASIÑO

___________________________________________________________________________

 

RESOLUTION

DIRECTING THE COMMITTEE ON CIVIL SERVICE AND PROFESSIONAL REGULATION TO CONDUCT AN INQUIRY, IN AID OF LEGISLATION,

ON THE PLIGHT OF GOVERNMENT WORKERS AND OFFICIALS OF THE COMMISSION ON ELECTIONS (COMELEC) WHOSE SALARY GRADES APPEAR DISMALLY OUTDATED AND GROSSLY INAPPROPRIATE FOR THEIR WORKLOAD

 

WHEREAS, the close to 6,000 rank and file employees and officials of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC), thru the COMELEC Wage Fight Alliance, have recently expressed their dismay at their current salary schedule and other pertinent wage concerns. Indeed, there appears to be a glaring disparity in the salary scale of COMELEC employees, from the majority that comprise the rank and file to the Commission’s mid-level and top officials, compared to fellow government employees in other government agencies, including other Constitutional bodies;

WHEREAS, the said disparity ranges from three to five grades. For instance, a Clerk I position in the COMELEC has a Salary Grade (SG) Level 3 and receives a measly P9,628 monthly. In other government agencies and Constitutional Commissions the lowest level for Clerks is SG 7, with a monthly salary of P12,880. There are also other government agencies, corporations and financial institutions and constitutional bodies where Clerks can reach up to SG-9, such as in the Philippine Senate;

WHEREAS, Election Officers (EOs), who are the backbone of the Comelec, also suffer from this glaring wage gap. As mandated by law, the EO’s chair the different Boards in the pre-election and election periods. Presently, there are only four (4) positions EO’s namely:  EO I, EO II, EO III and EO IV,  of which are assigned Salary Grades 12, 15, 18 and 21, respectively.  An EO I, who supervises a small electoral municipality, only has a SG 12 level that has a monthly pay of P18,333. An EO IV, who is responsible for a capital town or city, only has a SG 21 level. The same goes for a Comelec Provincial Election Supervisor (PES) that is assigned to SG 23 with a monthly pay of P40,604 despite the fact that their area responsibility is wider and workload heavier than division chief of other government agencies. It is important to note that considering their work load and responsibility, an EO or PES – especially those who are lawyers – is equivalent to a division chief in other state agencies that is at least on the SG 24 level with a monthly pay of P43,612;

WHEREAS, comparatively, lawyers in the Public Attorney’s Office have SG 25 for the lowest positions.  The Clerk of Court V of the Regional Trial Courts is SG 24; Clerk of Court VI is SG 25; and Clerk of Court VII is SG 26. Other offices in other state agencies have similar higher salary grades for lawyer positions.  Apparently, it is only in the Comelec that the salary grade for lawyers is extremely low;

WHEREAS, for the longest time, the universally accepted principle of “equal pay for substantially equal work and responsibility” in government service has not been applied to the COMELEC rank and file employees and its officers.  This disparity in pay is most evident during election time wherein COMELEC officers and employees receive lesser per diem incentives compared to the honoraria of other members of the electoral board coming from other government agencies;

WHEREAS, in the case of casual employees, government is doing a great injustice by pegging the salaries of all Comelec casual employees to SG 1, regardless of their position or job description. A casual employee of the COMELEC performing a technical or highly-skilled post is still on SG 1. This is tantamount to involuntary servitude and is an unfair labor practice;

WHEREAS, it is sad to note that despite their huge responsibility of having to supervise the conduct of elections in their jurisdiction, no one in the whole rank and file of the COMELEC receives a salary which can meet up with the current estimated daily cost of living in the country which is estimated to be P988 or about around P29,640 a month as of September 2011;

WHEREAS, Comelec employees and officials assert that the Commission has adequate funds to implement salary grade adjustments with its savings accumulated through the years. This is apparently correct since the Comelec enjoys fiscal autonomy with regard to managing its finances and the utmost priority in spending the savings generated by any and all government agencies should be for the payment of wages and other benefits of its employees;

WHEREAS, the Committee on Civil Service and Professional Regulation has jurisdiction over  “all matters directly and principally relating to the organization, operation, management, rules and regulations of the civil service; the status, welfare and benefits of government officers and employees”;

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, AS IT IS HEREBY RESOLVED, that the Committee on Civil Service and Professional Regulation conduct an inquiry, in aid of legislation, on the plight of government workers and officials of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) whose salary grades appear dismally outdated and grossly inappropriate for their work load.

Adopted,

 

Rep. Teddy A. Casino         
Bayan Muna Party-list

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