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Gov't Pours in P6.6-B Worth of Infra Projects to Spur Bicol Economic Growth

LEGAZPI CITY, Jan. 23 (PNA) -- The Bicol region received about P6.6 billion funding this year for vital infrastructure projects that are expected to bolster the region’s economic growth, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) said.

Danilo Dequito, DPWH regional director, said this year’s infrastructure funding is higher by 20 percent or P1.1 billion over last year’s P5.5 billion expenditures.

Dequito said the fresh funding came from the General Appropriation Act and some P5.3 billion will finance various projects by the different district engineering offices (DEOs) in the provinces of Bicol.

Camarines Sur gets P1.6 billion, followed by Albay with P1.0 billion; Camarines Norte, P922.5 million; Catanduanes, P681.6 million; Masbate, P524.2 million, and Sorsogon, P520.7 million.

Dequito said P1.3 billion worth of projects would be carried out by the regional office.

Asked why some projects are being implemented by the regional office but are supposed to be done by the agency’s district offices, Dequito explained that those are projects that go beyond the limit of authority granted to district offices.

District offices are only allowed to implement projects that do not exceed P150 million as per DPWH order issued by Secretary Rogelio Singson.

These regional office projects are: Camarines Sur-Albay Diversion Road or the San Fernando-Oas Section of the Pan-Philippine Highway (PPH), including bridges with an allocation of P300 million.

The 0pening of Bacon-Manito Road, P100 million; Bicol River Basin and Watershed Management Project (Flood Mitigation Component), P455 million; Legazpi City Urban Drainage Project, P300 million; and, Drainage/Protection Works along National Roads, P147 million.

“On top of these locally funded projects (LFPs) is P637 million worth of foreign- assisted projects for implementation in the provinces of Camarines Sur and Catanduanes which will be handled by our Central Office,” Dequito said.

Another P15 million was earmarked for the preliminary and detailed engineering activities of all these projects for implementation, the DPWH regional official said.

(PNA) LAP/FGS/MSA/CBD/ABB

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