Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Gordon proposes P1 tax on text for education

It's another tax proposal, but Sen. Richard Gordon says this one makes a difference because people will know where their taxes are going.

Gordon, during a press conference at the Baguio Country Club on Friday, said he has drafted the Philippine Education Revitalization Act that will focus on solving the country's education-related problems.

Under his proposal, another P1 will be added to the cost of sending text messages through mobile phones. The revenue, Gordon said, will go to a special fund that can be tapped by the Department of Education (DepEd).

He said the proposal, which he called "educational text" or "text for education," also includes the creation of an advisory body to help the DepEd determine its priority needs.

"Education is in disarray, but no one is solving it. We are not focused. We keep on talking about the problems but we don't do anything about them," he said.

Gordon said an average of 300 million text messages amounting to P300 million
are sent in the country daily. In a year, this could amount to P73 billion, he said.

Gordon said if the tax measure is passed, text messages are expected to go down to around 200 million, but this will not affect the amount to be generated because the cost of sending messages will be higher.

He said the advisory body would be asked to issue regular reports on its accomplishments and explain where the money generated was spent.

"Hard sacrifices must be made by everyone. Imagine what P73 billion could do for education," Gordon said.

He said the country lacks at least 69,000 classrooms, 40,000 teachers and more than 55,000 textbooks.

Donna Demetillo, PDI Northern Luzon Bureau


"What this country needs is not a change OF men but a change IN men."

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