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Senate returns ratified report on 105-day expanded maternity leave to bicam

The Senate has reconsidered the ratification of the bicameral conference committee's report on the 105-day expanded maternity leave law.

“We move to reconsider the adoption and ratification of the 105-day expanded maternity leave to allow the bicam panel of both houses (Senate and House of Representatives) to reconvene and do some perfecting amendments,” Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri said during session on Monday.

He said the bicam report has not been transmitted to Malacañang yet.

Once it becomes a law, working mothers will enjoy up to 105 days of paid leave, seven of which will be added to their husbands’ paternity leave, and an additional 15 days for solo mothers.

Asked why the report was reconsidered, Zubiri said there was a provision inserted during the bicam meeting that added appropriations and tax exemptions.

He said these appropriations and tax exemptions were opposed by the Department of Finance (DOF) and the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).

“Those were not approved by both chambers in plenary,” he added.

He further said it was Senator Risa Hontiveros, chairperson of the Senate committee on women, children, family relations, and gender equality, who requested the deferment of the routing and transmittal of the enrolled copy of the bill.

The bicameral committee is set to reconvene November 12 to reconsider the provisions.

It was not the first time that a bicam report that has already been ratified by both the Senate and House was reconsidered following an opposition from the executive department.

In October, a ratified report on the coco levy was returned to bicam after the DOF and the DBM supposedly expressed opposition to the lack of sunset provision in the bill. — BM, GMA News