INTERIOR Secretary Eduardo Año yesterday said Malacañang has yet to reach a decision on the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) monetization sought by local government units during their meeting with President Duterte last Friday night.
Año said another meeting is scheduled to be held either on Tuesday or on Wednesday between LGU representatives and the national government to continue discussions on the IRA monetization.
“Nag-consultation with governors and mayors, wala pang decision. There will be another meeting (There was a consultation with governors and mayors, no decision yet. There will be another meeting),” he said.
Año said the incremental IRA is not included in the current budget but the national government is looking at possible options on how to best help LGUs get their share.
The President, accompanied by Año, Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III and Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado, met with some members of the League of Provinces of the Philippines and League of Cities of the Philippines last Friday in Malacañang to discuss the monetization of the incremental IRA for 2019, 2020, and 2021.
Duterte in September said he was open to options that will allow LGUs to immediately avail of the incremental IRA as ruled by the Supreme Court in the petition filed by Batangas Gov. Hermenigildo Mandanas.
The Supreme Court has ruled that revenue shares of the LGUs should be sourced from all collected taxes and not limited to those collected only by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).
The High Court also said that adjusted shares should take effect in 2022.
To get their shares, the LGUs have pushed for the monetization of their IRA shares though schemes such as allowing LGUs to acquire loans from banks that the national government will pay.