A LAWMAKER has filed two separate bills proposing to increase the monthly pension rates for both private and public sector retirees.

House Bills (HB) No. 82 and No. 83 were recently filed by Ako-Bicol Party-list Rep. Alfredo A. Garbin, Jr.

HB 82 seeks to amend Sec. 9 of Republic Act No. 8291, or the The Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) Act of 1997, to make the basic monthly pension equal to the latest gross monthly compensation of the retired government employee.

“It is in the best interest of the service that the existing retirement program of the GSIS be revised by amending RA 8291… simplifying the computation of the same and by using the latest monthly salary of the retiring employee,” said Mr. Garbin in his explanatory note.

Under the current law, the computation of the basic monthly pension of a GSIS pensioner is 37.5% of the revalued average monthly compensation, plus 2.5% of the revalued average monthly compensation for each year of service in excess of 15 years.

RA 8291 states that the basic monthly pension shall be at least P1,300, while those who have rendered at least 20 years of service shall have a basic monthly pension of P2,400.

HB 82, on the other hand, seeks to change Republic Act No. 11199 or the Social Security Act of 2018 covering private sector workers.

“While this law is a fairly recent law, one which repealed Republic Act No. 1161 as amended by Republic Act No. 8282, this maintained or otherwise copied provisions which should have been improved to ensure that the benefits given to covered employees are abreast with the current financial realities,” reads part of the explanatory note.

The proposed measure will amend Section 12 of RA 8282, which provides that the minimum pension for Social Security System (SSS) members should be P1,200 for those with at least 10 years of service and P2,400 for those who reached 20 years.

Under the proposed bill, the minimum pension for those who rendered 10 years of service should be P3,200, while those who rendered 20 years of work should receive at least P4,400.

“The foregoing increase for affected pensioners shall be given in two tranches, the first tranche amounting to one thousand pesos shall be given starting on the first anniversary of the effectivity of this law and the second tranche amounting to one thousand pesos shall be given starting on the third anniversary of the effectivity of this law,” reads the proposed amendment.

Philippine Statistics Authority data released in January this year show GSIS contributors as of 2017 stood at 1.712 million while SSS contributors were 15.287 million.

GSIS’ coverage excludes members of the judiciary and constitutional commissions, contractual employees, and uniformed members of the military and the police. — Vince Angelo C. Ferreras