Recently, Congress passed House Bill 5460, which seeks to provide incentives for electric, hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles. Just this past week, Rep. Lord Allan Jay Velasco (Lone District, Marinduque) proposed a new bill to specifically for hybrid vehicles declaring that it is the duty of the State to sustain and protect its environment and natural resources. 

"Specifically, Section 16 of Article ll of the Constitution states that the State shall protect and advance the right of the people to a balanced and healthful ecology in accord with the rhythm and harmony of nature," said Velasco, a Vice Chairman of the House Committee on Constitutional Amendments.

He said his proposal seeks to encourage the importation and manufacture in the country of hybrid automobiles, which are known to be energy-efficient and environment-friendly vehicles.

His proposal, House Bill 6333, refers to a hybrid automobile as "a vehicle, which minimizes the total amount of energy to be consumed with respect to its fabrication, operation, and disposal, and represents a substantial improvement over existing electric and hybrid vehicles with respect to the total amount of energy so consumed. It uses an on-board rechargeable energy storage system and a fuel-based power source for vehicle propulsion."

It provides that any person, partnership or corporation whose primary purpose is to engage in the business of manufacturing or importing hybrid automobiles; and importation or manufacture of the components and parts of hybrid vehicles shall be exempt from payment of import duties, customs and tariff duties.

It further provides the Bureau of Customs shall promulgate the necessary rules and regulations, and shall subject to review the tax exemptions every three years from the effectivity of the Act. The result of the review shall be submitted in a report to the Congress, the bill provides.

This new proposal maybe well and good, but it seems as it is already covered by House Bill 5460 which was passed last March 21, 2012 and transmitted to the Senate on March 26, 2012, but was delayed there due to the Chief Justice impeachment proceedings.