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Iloilo City govt faces fine over missed PhilHealth premiums

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Bad news for the Iloilo City government: it may have to pay up in penalties and surcharges for failing to remit on time the premium contributions of its officials and personnel due to the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) in 2018.

The Commission on Audit said City Hall failed to remit its employees’ PhilHealth contributions amounting to P340,792.85 in 2018.

COA said this violates violated Section 111 of Presidential Decree 1445 (Government Auditing Code of the Philippines) and Section 20 of Republic Act 7875 (National Health Insurance Act of 2013).

Worse, City Hall may have to pay “penalties, surcharges, and interests,” as it deprived PhilHealth of its funds to finance its priority projects.

Meanwhile, COA urged the city accountant to “exert extra effort” to review and reconcile previous years’ withheld Philhealth premium contributions to determine the breakdown of the unremitted balance of ₱340,792.85.

The COA also reminded the city accountant to always ensure that the City’s PhilHealth premium contributions are reconciled and remitted to the agency on time.

Meanwhile, COA also scored the city government for its failure to remit the contributions of its personnel due the Government Service Insurance System, amounting to P17.53 million.

The auditors said the City Hall employees’ GSIS contributions were not remitted due to erroneous posting in the subsidiary ledgers that resulted in over or under remittances.

Such unreconciled balances “might affect the reliability of the account balance and the personnel’s claims upon retirement,” the COA noted.

City Accountant Michelle Lopez said the unremitted contributions is a “natural and an unavoidable” problem hounding the government accounting offices.