As the Senate continued its deliberations on the proposed Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Act (TRAIN) on Thursday, Akbayan Senator Risa Hontiveros pushed for additional tax exemptions for poor households that have taken senior citizens among its members.
Under the proposed tax measure, an annual additional exemption of P25,000 for each minor dependent not exceeding 4 per poor household is provided.
However, Hontiveros wants another additional exemption of twenty-five thousand Pesos (P 25,000) for each senior citizen residing in the same household not exceeding two (2).
"Akma lamang na isama ang ating mga lolo at lola sa additional tax exemptions na ito, lalo na ang mga nakatatanda na naninirahan sa mga mahihirap na pamilya. By exempting them from additional taxation, we give due recognition to their contributions to society and help them and their families capably respond to the challenges of realizing a better quality of life," Hontiveros said.
Based on her office's estimates, Hontiveros said that close to one million poor households or exactly 907,214 poor families have at least four minor members and at least one senior citizen.
Hontiveros said that her estimates show a pattern that there are more seniors in a household of richer social brackets, while there are more households with at least 4 dependents in poorer social groupings.
The Senator explained that the additional tax exemption is targeted to larger households because the burden of taxes like the Value Added Tax (VAT) and higher taxes being proposed under TRAIN impact families with more members.
"Senior citizens tend to live longer in families within richer social groupings. It is my hope that by providing additional tax exemptions to poor families with senior citizens, we will help keep our senior citizens in poorer families healthy and to lead productive lives," Hontiveros concluded.
Source: Senate of the Philippines