HOUSE BILL 9538, which extends the validity of funds authorized by Republic Act (RA) No. 11494 or the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act (Bayanihan II), has been approved by the chamber on second reading.

The extension runs until the end of 2021. They had been due to expire on June 30. The law’s original spend-by date was Dec. 9, 2020, before the June extension was granted with the signing of RA 11519 in January.

Bayanihan II is a P165.5-billion economic stimulus measure seeking to aid sectors hit hardest by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

P140 billion was sourced from general appropriations and the remaining P25.5 billion is contingent on fund availability.

 According to the Department of Budget and Management, as of April 15, 2021, only 51.1% of Bayanihan II funds have been obligated.

 The House of Representatives’ second regular session will go into sine die adjournment on June 4. — Bianca Angelica D. Añago