Pay hike meant to promote excellence in gov’t service: Palace

MANILA -- President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the much-awaited fifth round of salary increases among 1.4 million government workers to promote excellence in public service, Malacañang said on Thursday.

Speaking to Palace reporters, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said another pay hike in government has the "strong support" of the President, whose desire is to "upgrade the standard of living of government employees."

"And this measure will rationalize the compensation of all civilian personnel, including those in the legislative and judicial branches, as well as of local government units under certain conditions," the Palace official said.

"The purpose of which is to create an atmosphere which would promote excellence in the service providing for a performance-based incentive scheme to reward outstanding public servants," he added.

Duterte signed Republic Act 11466 or the Salary Standardization Law (SSL) 5 on Wednesday, but the Palace released a copy of the newly-signed law on Thursday.

The new law will implement the four tranches of the salary increase from 2020 to 2023.

A total of PHP130.45 billion would be needed to implement the four tranches of the SSL-5, with PHP33.16 billion as the funding requirement for this year.

Under SSL-5, increases in the pay for employees with Salary Grades 1 to 10 or the sub-professional levels will be from 17.5 percent to 20.5 percent over four years.

The lowest salary grade level employee, who is earning PHP11,068 a month, will enjoy an increase in his compensation to PHP11,551 in 2020, to PHP12,034 in 2021, to PHP12,517 in 2022, and to PHP13,000 in 2023.

The biggest increases would apply to employees belonging to the Salary Grades 10 to 16 bracket or the professionals, who comprise the bulk of the bureaucracy.

For Salary Grade 11 employees or the entry-level for teachers, they will receive an increase from PHP20,754 monthly to PHP22,316 in 2020, PHP23,877 in 2021, PHP25,439 in 2022, and PHP27,000 in 2023.

The lowest increases would apply to the middle managers, executives and the top officials of the country or from Salary Grades 25 to 33, at a mere eight percent.

Meantime, the 1987 Constitution states that the salaries of the President and Vice President will remain the same and whatever increases provided by SSL-5 will only be enjoyed after their terms. The same applies to the incumbent members of Congress.