TACLOBAN CITY, (PNA) – The Leyte Second Engineering District of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH 2nd LED) got a P1.2 billion approved budget under its National Expenditure Program (NEP) for 2016.

District Engineer Carlos Veloso said they were pushing for a higher 2016 budget; but, still glad that they will be granted projects that would strengthen infrastructure facilities in the district.

Under the budget, the 2nd LED will undertake a total of 59 projects amounting to PhP450 million. The rest of the projects with a total allocation of PhP700 million is through the DPWH Eastn Visayas regional office.

Among the priority project for 2016 is the repair and rehabilitation of 18 bridges. Most of bridge within the area are either old or have been damaged by heavy rains and water flow during the past typhoons.

Also appropriated under NEP are widening and road reblocking along the Palo-Carigara-Ormoc road. Veloso said that this vital highway that cuts across Leyte province have been steadily widened in order to accommodate increasing traffic flow.

Meanwhile, another PhP50 million is allocated for the Burauen-Albuera road in 2016. This budget is seen to complete the Burauen side of the project according to Veloso.

The DPWH will also handle various works on access roads leading to tourism destinations in Leyte’s second district.

In a recent report by the Department of Budget and Management, the DPWH , as a whole, will receive PhP394.5 billion under the 2016 National Expenditure Program (NEP). This amount is PhP90.4 billion or 29.7 percent more than its 2015 budget of PhP304.1 billion.

Under the 2016 proposed budget, the allocation for public infrastructure now stands at five percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), higher than the 4.3 percent of GDP for infrastructure outlays in 2015, and in line with the Administration’s budget goal for infrastructure investments.

As the government’s lead construction agency, the DPWH’s budget allocation is the second biggest among government departments. In 2016, the DPWH plans to complete the paving of all national arterial and secondary roads, as well as the continuing development of the national road network—including tertiary roads—and the preservation of road assets.

The DPWH will also handle various works on access roads leading to airports, ports, and tourism destinations. (PNA)