by Vincent Cabreza, Inquirer Northern Luzon

BAGUIO CITY—Can the government afford a new autonomous region?

That’s what Benguet Rep. Ronald Cosalan said he wanted to know when he urged the House committee on local government last week to reconsider its support for the autonomy measure sponsored by Cordillera lawmakers.

The committee, chaired by Negros Oriental Rep. George Arnaiz, passed House Bill No. 5595 after a five-minute deliberation and without further discussions on Feb. 22.

But Cosalan said the committee must invite the Department of Finance and other appropriation agencies to study the feasibility of subsidizing the Cordillera Autonomous Region (CAR) with a P50-billion grant for the first five years of its existence and another P25-billion grant for the next five years.

Please read more at Inquirer News, March 10, 2012.