Roxas: P1.8 billion Yolanda fund ready for downloading

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 10 2014 03:57 PM | Updated as of Apr 11 2014 04:50 AM

Tacloban gets biggest chunk – Roxas

MANILA - The national government has finally made available more than P1.79 billion for the rehabilitation of vital public buildings owned and operated by local government units (LGUs) in Yolanda-affected areas, Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas announced today.

According to Roxas, the government through the DILG will release the funding allocation amounting to P1,791,400,000 beginning this month subject to the complete submission by LGUs of required documents.

Roxas toured Yolanda-affected areas in Leyte province today to personally distribute the check for the rehabilitation fund to mayors who had submitted all the needed documents.

He noted that the P1.79-billion fund comprises only the first batch of rehabilitation fund for LGU-owned buildings. The second batch, amounting to P358,348,047.54, is still being processed by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).

Roxas explained that the special funding was made possible through the Reconstruction Assistance on Yolanda (RAY) - the national government's strategic plan to guide the recovery and reconstruction of the economy, lives, and livelihood in areas devastated by the Super Typhoon.

The objective of the plan is to restore the economic and social conditions of Yolanda-affected areas to their pre-typhoon levels, while also establishing a higher level of disaster resilience.

"Sinisimulan na namin ngayong buwan ang pagbibigay ng pondo para masimulan na ng mga LGUs ang pagpapagawa ng mahahalagang gusaling pampubliko na winasak ng Bagyong Yolanda," Roxas said.

"Bahagi ito ng pagsisikap ng pamahalaan na pabilisin ang normalisasyon sa mga lugar na nasalanta ng bagyo at maibalik ang regular na serbisyo ng LGU sa mamamayan sa lalong madaling panahon," he added.

The DILG has instructed all LGUs affected by Yolanda to submit their Program of Works (POW) for the rehabilitation of damaged public buildings in their respective areas, particularly the provincial, city, and municipal halls, public markets and civic centers.

Of the 14 provinces and 171 cities and municipalities within the 50-km radius of Typhoon Yolanda's path, four provinces and 146 municipalities and cities were reported to have sustained significant damage.

Reported damage to critical governance facilities in the 150 LGUs (4 provinces and 146 municipalities and cities) reveal that 92.3%, or a total of 323 facilities, are partially damaged while only 27 (7.7%) are totally damaged.

The total cost of approved POWs for the partially-damaged facilities is P1,245,777,911.21, while total cost of submitted POWs for the totally-damaged facilities is PHP 853,815,536.33.

The biggest chunk of the rehabilitation fund for cities and municipalities will go to Tacloban City, which was allocated P230,687,979.22 for the repair of the city hall, public market, and civic center.

For the provinces, Leyte received the biggest funding with allocation amounting to P801,804,911.17, or about 45 percent of the total rehabilitation fund.

Allocation for the other provinces in Region 8 include P19,917,634.41 for Biliran; P100,219,564.57 for Eastern Samar; and P16,528,192.25 for Western Samar.

In Region 6, the rehabilitation budget was divided with Iloilo getting the biggest slice of P78,829,195.17; followed by Capiz with P66,053,141.99; Aklan with P27,006,079.33; Antique with P24,877,150; and Negros Occidental with P5,152,267.

During his tour of Leyte province, Roxas reminded the LGU beneficiaries of the RAY fund to submit all the required documents at the soonest time possible so that the national government can expedite the release of budget allocation this April.

Initial documents required include a Certificate from a Government Depository Bank on the LGU Trust Account where Funds will be deposited, and SP/SB Resolution authorizing the Local Chief Executive to enter into a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the DILG Regional Office.

"Inaasahan ko na kukumpletuhin ng mga LGUs ang mga dokumentong ito at ipapasa sa amin sa DILG sa lalong madaling panahon para mapakinabangan na agad ang pondong inilaan ng Pangulong P-Noy sa mga nasalanta ng Bagyong Yolanda," Roxas said.