Bill exempts elderly from parking fees, coding

A congressional leader has pushed for the exemption of senior citizens from paying parking fees and the government’s number coding scheme.

Through House BIll 8599, or the “Free Parking and Coding Exemption for Senior Citizens Act,” Deputy Majority Leader and Quezon City Rep. Alfred Vargas said he hoped to provide senior citizens with “simple economic benefits that would reward their great contributions to our country’s development.”

Vargas, head of the committee on social services, noted that his bill was filed in the 17th Congress but remained pending at the committee level.

“Nevertheless, the clamor for more benefits for Filipino senior citizens persists,” he said in the bill’s explanatory note.

The measure proposes free parking in all establishments for vehicles registered in a senior citizen’s name.

The number coding exemption, meanwhile, would apply to vehicles where a senior citizen is either the driver or passenger.

Vargas said while the government’s efforts should be focused on protecting vulnerable sectors such as the elderly from COVID-19, it should also prepare for the post-pandemic recovery where greater mobility should be encouraged.

“At present, health must be the number one priority of our people, especially our dear senior citizens. However, we felt the need to still file this bill as we look forward to our post-pandemic recovery,” Vargas said.

“It would be a nice welcome present to our elderly for when they are finally allowed to go out.”

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