Posted on OCTOBER 21, 2016
One of the agenda in today’s meeting is about the CNA benefits proposed by the ASAP. The CNA has been signed by the members of the RTU Management Panel and by the representatives of the ASAP union. I have not signed it. I have sought authority from the Board of Regents to sign said document. But because of many provisions of the CNA which the BOR members found not in order (not to mention excessive) or which the University would not be in the position to grant, the Board will defer consideration of my request for authority to sign and return the CNA back to the drawing board for re-negotiation. It is the Board of Regents which authorizes the expenditure of our funds.
I invited several officers of the ASAP to a meeting last Monday. I requested that they could just prioritize the items they are asking for in the CNA from the most urgent to those which will take many years before even the first steps could be undertaken, from the items we will need by the end of the year and those which could raise legal questions if implemented and must therefore be more thoroughly discussed. The ASAP officers have not submitted any of the items I requested.
If the CNA would not push through for this year, however, there would be many more ways we could augment our incomes through the operations of the PRAISE.
PRAISE benefits, however, require us to work for and sweat for our incentives. PRAISE requires that we should have a significant contribution to the University. It may not be big or earth-shaking but it could just be an extra effort which could lead to positive results. The days when we would be receiving big amounts we called RI or Amelioration or Alleviation periodically whether we work hard or work just enough or work not at all, are gone. Now we have to really work for our benefits.
You can do research as a way of having some extra income. We have been pretty generous in giving incentives to research and lately to extension.
When the COA disallowed our RI and issued an AOM for our Alleviation Allowance I instructed Dr. Elmer Martin, Chairman of the PRAISE Committee, to step up on their efforts. As a result, some of us have been receiving PRAISE incentives. The Faculty Club has requested me to include Dr. Yangco in the PRAISE. Instead I have made her the Chairman of the PRAISE Committee. The PRAISE Committee of Dr. Yangco has begun its work, and has already recommended the giving of incentives for ISO work for a batch of employees ranging from PhP 5,000 to PhP 7,500. I have modified a little their recommendation to give the Electrical Engineering faculty members incentives for having achieved a phenomenal 90.24% passing rate in the licensure examinations, which placed us 4th over-all in the NCR. The PRAISE recommended PhP 5,000 for the Department Head, I raised it to PhP 6,000. The PRAISE Committee suggested PhP 3,000 for each faculty member in the Department, I raised it to PhP 3,500. I also asked the PRAISE Committee to give each of the recipients a certificate of recognition, and a trophy or plaque of recognition for the Department.
Yesterday, I called the PRAISE to a meeting. I gave them instruction to give PRAISE incentives every week, whether for individuals or for groups. Give PRAISE for those who keep themselves healthy by doing Zumba of playing basketball. I believe our PE teachers deserve some PRAISE incentives and recognition for keeping their areas clean even during and after their PE classes. Those who can do the impossible such as having perfect attendance in their work deserve incentives too. There are many ways you can think of. Please be assured that you have my support.
This Wednesday I had a meeting with the Presidents of SUCs in NCR. I learned that they have not adjusted their part-time rates even for Salary Standardization Law 3. We have already adjusted our part-time rates for the 1st tranche of SS Law 4. We have the highest part-time rates among SUCs in NCR at least.
This Tuesday, Cyrus Tuazon and I sought the opinion of the legal departments of the CSC and the COA for our anniversary token. The amounts proposed for our tokens were described by the CSC as “masyadong malaki” and “extravagant” by the COA. The CSC suggested that we consult a relevant issuance by the Bureau of Internal Revenue to help us be guided on the reasonable amount for the token. Based on the BIR issuance, the reasonable amount would be PhP 10,000 maximum for the token, and based on the practice in the CSC, we found that it could be given in cash to allow the recipient to choose the token that would please him. I have the opinion that we should give PhP 10,000 worth of token for those who have completed 20 years of service and above, but the PRAISE Committee has other ideas. I am awaiting their recommendation. It is possible that we can give our allowances for the token by next week.
We have worked hard to upgrade our facilities and equipment. You can see the improvements yourself when you visit most of our laboratories. We have seven new computer laboratories in the Gonzales Hall. The OB is now being renovated, after the rehabilitation of the R and D building. Three new buildings are about to be completed in the Pasig Campus. Two more buildings will rise in the Mandaluyong Campus. By the time my term ends eight new buildings would have been built in the University, in addition to the seven built during the previous administrations. I believe we deserve our ISO award.
We have consistently been given our Performance-Based Bonus or PBB. There is one thing you should know about the PBB. There are several areas in the Measurable Final Outputs which are used as basis for the awarding of the PBB. We have to pass the majority of these MFOs. If we fall short of any item in the MFO, there would be a penalty. The penalty is PhP 5,000 for every MFO where we fell short. The amount is to be deducted. But don’t worry. The amount is to be deducted ONLY from the PBB of the University President. All of you are spared. The accomplishments, it would appear, are yours. The shortcomings are the fault of the University President and his alone so that only he will suffer.
The ISO is one requirement for the PBB of 2016. I am informed that we will be given the equivalent of the 15th month pay for our PBB for this year, to be released next year. Many of us, in fact the great majority of us, contributed our efforts for the ISO, but some did not and were even openly critical of the award. They too will receive their ISO-based PBB.
In 2017 we should expect bigger obstacles to the PBB and bigger conditions. We will face them and accomplish whatever they ask of us because we can.
We will try to give ourselves a bonus by the end of the year. In the light of disallowances and AOMs this could be a three-point shot from deep, almost near the half-court line. I have a team in mind to lobby with the CSC and the COA after we get ideas for our legal basis from the OSG. Cyrus, Atty. Pabs Carpio and Dr. Yangco will closely work with me in this regard. We need not wait for the CNA. I have the feeling that we could give ourselves, and that includes me, a few more benefits. Diskarte lang ang kailangan.
Faculty members will receive their part-time differentials by November in addition to our year-end bonus.
We are still in a state of financial bliss, but this may no longer last for very long. We have already seen the effects of the K to 12. As of August this year, our income has gone down by 35 million. The effects to our financial position by the K t0 12 would last for at least 6 years and it would take as long as 8 years before we can finally recover from the financial shock. In anticipation of the sharp reduction in our income I have saved money in the bank. This money will make things a little easier for us but will not be enough. At this point may I ask you to cooperate because only through cooperation will we survive the years to come. We will have to start measures to save, first on electricity and water, and later in many other aspects of our operation.
But we will survive. We survived such as when during the early months of my administration the RTU had just about 5 million remaining in funds and about 10 times that amount in payables. In 10 months we were able to bring our financial standing to the positive level. And if you think this were difficult times I myself will tell you that we have had even worse times. But nevertheless we survived.
Good afternoon to everybody.
JESUS RODRIGO F. TORRES