Allotment releases, which refer to the authorization issued by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) enabling line agencies to incur obligations for their programs and projects, amounted to PhP2.607 trillion from May 2 - 31, 2019. This is equivalent to 79.6% of the PhP3.276 trillion net program for Fiscal Year (FY) 2019, with the remaining balance at PhP668.6 billion.
It can be noted that the government operated under a reenacted budget for the first four months of the year as the FY 2019 General Appropriations Act (GAA) was signed into law only on April 15, 2019. Allotment releases from the FY 2018 GAA as reenacted amounted to PhP386.1 billion from January to April 2019. Combining the 2019 net program of PhP3.276 trillion and the initial releases from the 2018 reenacted budget yields the full-year program of PhP 3.662 trillion.
Releases to departments reached PhP1.515 trillion, which is 83.7% of its net program. This is largely due to the GAA-as-Allotment-Order (GAAO) policy of the DBM where majority of funds are comprehensively released to agencies as soon as the budget is passed into law. Releases from Special Purpose Funds (SPFs) amounted to PhP21.1 billion or 5.4% of its net program. Most allotments from SPFs are “for later release” since certain conditions have to be met and specific requirements have to be submitted by requesting agencies as outlined in the legal provisions of the FY 2019 GAA.
On the other hand, allotment releases from automatic appropriations amounted to PhP1.052 trillion, or 98.2% of its net program, as of end-May 2019. Automatic appropriations are fixed by law for specific purposes, such as debt service, net lending, and the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) for local government units (LGUs).
Other releases, such as continuing appropriations from last year’s budget, unprogrammed appropriations (or appropriations made available with new or excess revenues), and other automatic appropriations reached PhP18.46 billion. These other releases are also charged against the full-year PhP3.662 trillion obligation program.
Moving forward, the DBM will continue the speedy yet prudent release of funds to accomplish the programs, activities, and projects of government agencies. Efficient budget releases will ensure that public resources, including the money paid by taxpayers, will be channeled to interventions that alleviate poverty, create jobs, and boost the country’s overall development.
TABLE 1: Status of the FY 2019 Budget