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Section 1. Any provision of existing law to the contrary notwithstanding, any indigent litigant may, upon motion, ask the Court for adequate travel allowance to enable him and his indigent witnesses to attend the hearing of a criminal case commenced by his complaint or filed against him. The allowance shall cover actual transportation expenses by the cheapest means from his place of residence to the court and back. When the hearing of the case requires the presence of the indigent litigant and/or his indigent witnesses in court the whole day or for two or more consecutive days, allowances may, in the discretion of the Court, also cover reasonable expenses for meal and lodging. For the purpose of this Act, indigent litigants shall include anyone who has no visible means of income or whose income is insufficient for his family as determined by the Court under Section 2, hereof.

Section 2. If the court determines that the petition for transportation allowance is meritorious, said court shall immediately issue an order directing the provincial, city or municipal treasurer to pay the indigent litigant the travel allowance out of any funds in his possession and proceed without delay to the trial of the case. The provincial, city or municipal treasurer shall hold any such payments as cash items until reimbursed by the national government.

Section 3. All payments of travel allowances made by provincial, city and municipal treasurer under this Act as of October 31 each year, shall be transmitted to the Commissioner of the Budget not later than November 30 each year for inclusion in the annual General Appropriations Act. The necessary sum is hereby authorized to be appropriated out of the funds in the National Treasury not otherwise appropriated.

Section 4. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

Approved, August 4, 1969.

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