A new compensation scheme for government workers in the Philippines, otherwise known as the Salary Standardization Law III, will be put into effect. Salient provisions are described in this article.
[Proceed to the bottom of this article for the 2010 and 2011 salary increase update]
I just heard through the grapevine that the proposed Salary Standardization Law III, was signed into law by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo last June 17, 2009. It provided for a substantial increase in the salary of government employees in the Philippines. Being a government employee myself, I wanted to know more about it. I surfed the web and came up with the following information:
Description of the Law and Beneficiaries
The newly enacted law came through the Senate and the House of Representatives as Joint Resolution No. 36. It is also referred to as Congressional Joint Resolution No. 4, Salary Standardization Law III, or SSL3. Its principal author is Sen. Edgardo Angara, and his co-author is Richard Gordon. Specifically, the law is described as a “Joint Resolution authorizing the President of the Philippines to modify the Compensation and Position Classification System of Civilian Personnel and the Base Pay Schedule of Military and Uniformed Personnel in the Government, and for other purposes.” The law will be implemented from July 1, 2009 to 2013, and will benefit about 1.145 million government employees of which 854, 842 of them are in the civil service and 290, 877 personnel are in the military service. The salary increases will take effect on July 1, 2009 for national government entities and on Jan. 1, 2010 for local government units.
The increase in salary among government employees will be subdivided into four yearly tranches, which means a fourth will be received annually. The total package allocated for the salary increase is P20 billion (US$428.68 million) from the proposed P1.4 trillion ($30.07 billion at the September 19 exchange rate of $1:P46.56 in 2008) national budget for 2009.
Some Provisions of SSL3
Under the SSL3, those under the Sub-Professional level (Salary Grades 1-9) will receive 28% to 36% increase, those in the Professional level (Salary Grades 10-24) will receive 38% to 100% increase, and those in the Executive category will receive 71%-142% increase. A new teacher’s entry-level status, for example, is at salary grade 11 which is P18, 549. Considering that this will be implemented in four yearly tranches, this will mean an increase of P1,630.75 annually or an additional P6,523 increase in four years. A teacher who has a specialization in Science or Math will be granted a salary three steps higher in his or her assigned salary grade.
Other details on SSL3 that I gleaned from other sources are the following:
- the starting pay of a nurse is at Salary Grade 11, equivalent to P18,088 per month;
- Salary Grade 1 is at P9,000 or an increase of P2,851 or a 46% hike from the current P6,149;
- Barangay Councilors will be placed at Salary Grade 10;
- an Armed Forces of the Philippines sergeant at SG 11;
- barangay councilors and chairmen at SG 10 and 14 respectively;
- the President at P120,000 or an increase P50, 122; a 71.7% hike from the P69, 878 that the president currently receives;
- Medical Officers I (doctors) and Legal Officers I (lawyers) will have an increase by 79.2 percent from P15,181 to P27,198. Their grade levels will be upgraded from SG 14 to SG 16;
- utility workers and those who are in clerical positions will, on the average, receive a thirty percent salary increase; and
- directors and assistant secretaries will be at P68,428 and P73,903, respectively.
Further, the specific salary grade and compensation to personnel of Armed Forces of the Philippines of the Department of National Defense, Philippine National Police under the Department of Interior and Local Government and the Philippine Coast Guard are specifically provided for, while the specific salary grade classification of civilian personnel will be arbitrarily decided upon by the Department of Budget and Management.
Also, the application of salary increase among employees of local government units is non-automatic. This means that classifications will depend on income, class and financial capability of the area concerned. This means about 65 to 75 percent of the proposed hikes for sixth class municipalities. In addition, employees of Government Owned and Controlled Corporations, Government Financial Institutions and State Universities and Colleges with their own charter are exempted from Joint Resolution No. 36 under Committee Report 1992 or SSL3 even if their rates are lower than that provided for in the SSL3.
Although there are many criticisms about the salary increase, I would say that the government did something significant to uplift the living conditions of its workers despite the worldwide economic slowdown. And for that, I salute all those who contributed and did their best to pass the law.
Click here for the 2010 Second Tranche update.
Click here for the 2011 Third Tranche Salary Increase