Unprogrammed appropriations, only standby Funds, says DBM

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MANILA—The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) issued a statement on Wednesday regarding the unprogrammed appropriations saying it is meant only as standby funds.

We write to shed light on concerns regarding the unprogrammed appropriations of the fiscal year (FY) 2024 national budget.

Allow us to emphasize that unprogrammed appropriations are standby appropriations, outside the approved government fiscal program, which serve as an important tool for the government to address unforeseen expenditures and prioritize essential programs and projects.

It is not included in the P5.7676 trillion FY 2024 National Budget by Appropriation Source, given that it refers to standby appropriations that are also proposed for legislation and to be authorized by Congress.

The DBM likewise notes that unprogrammed appropriations of the FY 2024 budget are not automatically allocated, and can only be released if several funding conditions are met, such as when the government, through the Bureau of Treasury, is able to collect excess revenue in the total tax revenues or any of the identified non-tax revenue sources from its revenue target, or new revenue from new tax or non-tax sources, or should foreign or approved financial loans/grants proceeds are realized.

Should there be new or excess revenues that may trigger the availability of the unprogrammed funds, government agencies are required to submit the necessary documentary requirements before access to the standby funds is given. Such conditions ensure that spending stays within allowable limits.

Further, please note that pursuant to the constitutional provision under Section 29 (1), Article VI, it is prescribed that, “No money shall be paid out of the Treasury except in pursuance of an appropriation made by law.”

It is therefore clear that the deliberation and approval of the limits of any appropriations is within the purview of the legislature. Rest assured that regardless of any petition or challenge, the DBM shall work within our approved fiscal program.

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