In a bid to help the country’s athletes achieve excellence and ensure success in international sports competition, President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a law green-lighting the establishment of a P3.5 billion “state-of-the-art” national sports training facility.
Republic Act No. 11214, also known as the “Philippine Sports Training Center Act,” seeks to “promote and develop sports in the country” with the establishment of multi-billion-peso sports complex, which would be called as the Philippine Sports Training Center (PSTC).
The new legislation seeks to “achieve excellence in international sports competition, ensure success in the country’s quest to achieve competitiveness in the Olympic Games, promote international amity among nations.”
“The State shall promote physical education and encourage sports program, league competitions, and amateur sports, including training for international competitions to foster self-discipline, teamwork, and excellence for the development of a healthy and alert citizenry,” the law stated.
“To further this policy, the State shall establish and construct a state-of-the-art and highly scientific sports complex,” it added.
According to the law, there shall be a six-month planning upon its effectivity. The necessary sports facilities and amenities, which the government hopes would be “at par” with international standards, shall then be constructed within a period of 18 months in a location suitable and conducive to high-level training of athletes, coaches, and referees.
The PSTC shall also serve as the “official home and primary venue for the development of athletes in the National Team,” providing them access to scientific principles and programs, training techniques, and modern equipment and facilities.
Staying true to its “state-of-the-art” branding, the soon-to-be-constructed sports complex aims to provide over 26 training facilities such as athletes’ and coaches’ dormitory, baseball field, covered swimming and diving pool, football field, multipurpose gymnasium, track and field oval, tennis courts, library, weight training building, school buildings, worship and meditation room, and a medical center, among others.
It shall also include sports facilities and amenities for 39 Olympic sports and other non-Olympic sports such as aquatics, archery, ranks, athletics, badminton, baseball, basketball, billiard and snookers, BMX and Cycling, bowling, boxing, chess, dance sport, fencing, gymnastics, judo, karatedo, Muay Thai, softball, table tennis, taekwondo, weighlighting, wrestling, and wushu, among others.
The said law also mandates the Philippine Sports Commission, through the Philippine Sports Institute, to ensure that the PSTC shall meet its objectives.
“The PSC is vested with the authority to administer, manage, operate, and maintain the PSTC including the administration of incidental income, security of the complex, assignment of personnel and hiring of managers, specialists, and other administrative staff as may be needed,” it said.
“The PSC shall (also) employ professional and highly skilled managers with long and vast experience in sports administration and management to ensure the proper maintenance and upkeep of the PSTC and its facilities and other amenities.”
The ownership, including the title of the land, shall also be vested upon the PSC. The PSC Chairman will then have to submit a report to the Chairperson of the House Committee on Youth and Sports Development on a quarterly basis about the status of the construction of the PSTC until its completion.
The PSC shall also appoint or designate an executive director and a deputy executive director that would supervise the daily operations of the PSTC
As for the funding of the PSTC’s establishment, an amount of P3.5 billion will be appropriated and will also be included in the annual General Appropriations Act.
“The amount necessary to carry out the other provisions of this Act, particularly for the maintenance, operation, and management of the PSTC, shall be included in the budget of the PSC in the GAA. All incidental income that may be derived by the PSC in its management and operation of the PSTC shall form part of the National Sports Development Fund,” it explained.
Within 30 days upon the effectivity of the said act, the PSC is also tasked to consult and coordinate with the Department of Public Works and Highways to promulgate its implementing rules and regulations.
Meanwhile, in case a certain sport was not listed in the legislation’s list of accredited sports, the new law stated that it shall be considered in the PSTC as long as the PSC deemed it significant and necessary.
The said Act shall take effect 15 days after its publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation. It was signed by the President on Feb. 14, 2019.
RA No. 11214 was a consolidation of House Bill No. 5615 and Senate Bill No. 1716, which was passed by the House of Representatives and the Senate on Dec. 10, 2018 and Dec. 6, 2018, respectively.