CamSur DE Roces debunks report over project delays

Editor’s Note: In the interest of truth and fair play, We are hereunder reprinting in full the memorandum of DE Rebecca J. Roces of the 2nd Engineering District of Camarines Sur that in effect serves as her reply to allegations reported as banner story in Bicol Mail issue of May 18, 2017. DE Roces refutes the allegations directed against her on alleged slippages over projects that her office has implemented or is currently implementing. May 22, 2017 MEMORANDUM FOR : DANILO E. VERSOLA, CESO III Regional Director DPWH Regional Office V Rawis, Legaspi City SUBJECT : Official Statement on the News Article of Mr. Jason B. Neola of Bicol Mail, May 18, 2017 edition titled, “Contractors wary over project delays” This pertains to your Memorandum dated May 19, 2017 and received by this office thru email on the even date regarding the news article written by Mr. Jason B. Neola of Bicol Mail on May 18, 2017 edition titled “Contractors wary over project delays”. Please be informed of the following clarifications: 1. This office has a total of 133 projects implemented under CY-2015 with a total allocation of P1.46 Billion. All sixty-five (65) projects under the DPWH Regular Infrastructure program with a total allocation of P996.52 Million were 100% completed. To date, out of the 68 CY-2015 Outside Infrastructure projects, only nine (9) projects are still on-going, eight (8) of which are under DepEd’s CY-2015 BEFF Batch 2 which were awarded last December 2016 due to the late release of additional fund and one(l) project under PAGCOR CY-2014-2015 SAP. Overall accomplishment of projects as of May 15, 2017 is 95.11% contrary to the article that only 59 projects (54.12%) are completed. 2. For DPWH CY-2016 Infrastructure Program, a total of 104 projects with total allocation of P721.23 Million were implemented by this office. Sixty-six (66) projects were under DPWH Regular Infrastructure Program with total allocation of P519.24 Million, of which 65 projects were already 100% completed and only one project is still on-going with 90.05% accomplishment in the amount of P31.64 Million (w/ RROW problem). The remaining four (4) on-going projects are outside infrastructure projects: one (1) farm-to-mill project (SAA received November 28, 2016 and with ROW issues), one (1) school building project (additional fund received October 12, 2016) and two (2) farm-to-market road projects (terminated). This is contrary to the article that there are still 19 on-going projects under CY-2016. There are still five (5) Not Yet Started (NYS) in the amount of P105.39 Million, two (2) of which are health facilities projects (no buildable site) and three (3) school building projects under DepEd (awaiting release of the additional fund requested). Overall accomplishment of projects as of May 15, 2017 is 83.27%. 3. For CY-2017 projects, a total of 79 projects are being implemented by this office with a total allocation of P785.01 Million with 71 projects under the DPWH Regular Infrastructure Program in the amount of P761.10 Million. As of May 15, 2017, out of the 71 projects, 30 are on-going with a total accomplishment of 7.68% and the 39 projects are under procurement process and targeted for award on or before June 30, 2017 and two (2) projects under Preliminary Detailed Engineering (PDE) targeted for advertisement on May 29, 2017. The remaining eight (8) projects are outside infra under DA-FMR Road Dev’t. Program, all of which are already scheduled for bidding and targeted for award on or before June 30, 2017. 4. As to the delayed projects mentioned on the article, following are the clarifications: a. To date, this office has no on-going road widening project along Pili-Tigaon-Albay road section in the amount of P22.0M. The last project implemented by this office on that road section was under CY-2015 Regular Infrastructure and was completed on October 2015. b. The widening projects along Naga-Calabanga-Balongay Road under CY-2015 was already completed last January 2016. c. Also, there were three (3) CY-2015 flood control projects implemented along Camaligan, Camarines Sur located at “Sabang to Camaligan Section” and “Brgy. Tarusanan to San Francisco, Camaligan Section” and were completed on schedule last January 1, 2016 and July 31, 2015, respectively, and the other one completed May 16, 2015. 5. It was stated on the report that the incurred negative slippages of the contractors were not of their own making alone and one of the specific reasons is their difficulty of hauling. Please be informed that the usual causes of delay of the contractors as observed by this office are their lack of equipment, materials and manpower resources, and poor construction management which are beyond the control of this office. Furthermore, this office grants time extensions to contractors who encounter delays and incur negative slippage which are not thru their fault and are according to the acceptable reasons of Time Extension of the Revised IRR of R.A. 9184. Such extensions were even endorsed to the Regional Office or Central Office if such request for time extensions are beyond the authority of the District Engineer. In fact, for CY-2016 alone, out of the 104 projects, 69 projects (63.30%) were granted contract time extension due to various reasons (see attached summary). 6. Another reason cited on the article that contractors are attributing their delay to is the lack of aggregate materials. Please be informed that we are only requiring the contractor construction materials which passed the specifications of each contract items based on the DPWH Standard specifications regardless of the material source. In other words, as long as the materials passed the required tests, we allowed the contractor to use it, regardless of whether it is sourced from Albay or somewhere else. Also, as of date, the undersigned has no recollection of any request for time extension from contractors, verbally or thru a letter, due to scarcity of construction materials. The undersigned together with the DPWH personnel are doing their best to help the contractor in whatever legal means possible. In fact, we even invite the contractors for meetings in this office to solicit the reasons of their delay and advised them of possible solutions/strategies to fast track their project and eliminate their negative slippage. We do not want the project to incur negative slippage and delay its completion as we also know the importance of the completion of the projects at the scheduled completion date or even earlier in the growth of the economy. Regarding the processing of Advance Payments, First Partial Billings, Interim Billings, Final Billings, etc., of the contractors, please be informed that this office immediately process such requests provided that the contractor provide and complete the necessary supporting documents as required by D.O. 156 s.2015: Implementation of Documents Tracking System (DoTS) for Civil Works Projects. However, some contractors do not immediately comply with the needed documents which is the reason why processing of their request for payments were delayed. Lastly, as to the claim of the Mr. Neola about his efforts to contact the undersigned or Asst. District Engineer Ragragio on the matters, please be informed that the writer did not make physical appearance to this office, or have made any call, email or any form or communication to seek our comments. For your information. Rebecca J. Roces District Engineer