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JAN.

29, 2015

NR # 3726

House committees okay proposed Adopt-a-Wildlife Species Program


The House Committees on Natural Resources, Appropriations, and Ways and
Means have reported out for floor deliberation a measure that establishes the Adopt-aWildlife Species Program, which encourages the adoption of wildlife species by local
communities.
House Bill 5311, which substituted House Bills 391 and 728 authored by Reps.
Susan A. Yap (2nd District, Tarlac) and Edcel B. Lagman (1 st District, Albay), respectively,
grants tax exemption to individuals or entities that shall adopt wildlife species.
Any donation, contribution, request or grant, which shall be made to the Adopt-aWildlife Species Program by the adopting entity or individual shall be exempt from the
donors tax and the same shall be considered as allowable deduction from gross income in
the computation of the donors income tax, in accordance with the provisions of the
National Internal Revenue Code of 1997, as amended, the bill said.
The bill was co-authored by Reps. Francisco T. Matugas (1 st District, Surigao del
Norte), Isidro T. Ungab (3rd District, Davao City) and Romero S. Quimbo (2 nd District,
Marikina), chairmen, respectively, of the natural resources, appropriations and ways and
means committees.
Lagman said the government has enacted various laws to protect the countrys
threatened species, including Republic Act 9147 or the Wildlife Resources Conservation
and Protection Act and Republic Act 7586 or the National Integrated Protected Areas
System Act.
There are also a number of existing laws aimed at protecting specific threatened
species such as marine turtles, whale sharks, marine mammals, the Philippine crocodile
and the tamaraw, among others, Lagman added.
However, despite these conservation efforts, population estimates for some notable
species, including the national bird of the Philippines, the Philippine Eagle, and the largest
mammal endemic to the country, the tamaraw, still continue to decline, according to
Lagman.
Yap said the bill intends to establish additional measures for the preservation and
protection of biological diversity and promote ecological sustainable development.
It aims to expand the participation of the private sector in the conservation of the
environment by providing for incentives and a strong science-based framework which will
guide the programs and activities for the same, Yap said.

Through the Adopt-a-Wildlife Species Program, the bill to be known as the Adopta-Wildlife Species Act aims to prevent the extinction and protect the threatened species
and their habitats, and conserve these species and their habitats through the active
participation of the private sector and other sectors of society.
The adoption of wildlife species by local communities shall be under the guidelines
to be jointly promulgated by the Departments of Environment and Natural Resources,
Agriculture and Finance and the Palawan Council for sustainable Development.
It shall be implemented throughout the country with the active participation,
involvement and assistance of the local government units (LGUs), non-government
organizations (NGOs), peoples organizations (POs), civil society groups and private
individuals.
A Memorandum of Agreement stipulating the terms and conditions of the adoption
in accordance with Republic Act 9147 or the Wildlife Resources Conservation and
Protection Act shall be executed by and between the entity or individual and the
Secretaries of the DENR or the DA or the Chairperson of the PCSD or their duly
representatives. The MOA shall be effective for two years, which period may be extended
upon mutual agreement of the parties.
The National Technical Committee shall be created to formulate the design and
mechanics for the implementation of the program. The Regional Monitoring Committee,
on the other hand, shall be established to conduct periodic monitoring evaluation of the
performance of the adopting entity or individual. (30) mrs