A BILL calling for a four-tranche salary hike for civilian government employees has been filed in the Senate.

The fourth and last tranche of pay hikes for public servants under the Salary Standardization Law of 2019 took effect on Jan. 1.

“The government must always review the salaries it provides to civilian employees so that it can maintain the attractiveness of government service and reduce the possibility of corruption,” Senator Christopher Lawrence T. Go, who filed Senate Bill No., 2504 on Dec. 5, said in the bill’s explanatory note.

Under the measure, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) will prepare a modified four-tranche payment hike schedule starting Jan. 1, 2024, with succeeding tranches taking effect on the same date annually until 2027. It will also issue guidelines to implement the salary hike schedule.

The differences in salary increases would be determined based on “substantive differences in duties, responsibilities, accountabilities and qualification requirements” of the various government positions.

“The compensation for all civilian government personnel shall be standardized and rationalized across all government agencies to create an enabling environment that will promote social justice, integrity, efficiency, productivity, accountability, and excellence in the civil service,” according to a copy of the measure.

Military and uniformed personnel and those working in government-owned or -controlled corporations (GOCCs) covered by the Compensation and Position Classification System of the Governance Commission for GOCCs are excluded from the bill.

In August, Budget Secretary Amenah F. Pangandaman told the House Committee on Appropriations that the DBM is setting aside about P17 billion for salary adjustments for public servants next year.

The DBM had allocated P48 million to conduct a study evaluating the need to raise government workers’ pay.

“Having competitive compensation in government service not only improves the lives of government employees but also attracts employees with expertise and skill,” Mr. Go said. “It dignifies work in the government.” — John Victor D. Ordoñez