By Ernie Reyes
MANILA — Sen. Grace Poe proposed a budget of P120 billion for the
Department of Transportation (DOTr) that is lower than the amount
proposed under the General Appropriations Bill and the National
Expenditure Program, with the expectation that the agency will be able
to disburse the forthcoming 2022 budget faster.
The department budget defended by Poe will be used to fund six rail
projects, 18 airports, 46 ports, eight road projects, and also
includes salary adjustments for the agency’s employees to comply with
the salary standardization program as well as the hiring of more coast
“The agency’s low disbursement rate has always been a point of
contention, but we cannot disregard the services that our countrymen
need now more than ever as we recover together from the pandemic,”
The proposed budget is P1.5 billion lower than the amount proposed
under the General Appropriations Bill and around P33 billion lower
than the National Expenditure Program.
According to Poe, one of the key amendments to the budget is the
inclusion of P10.83 billion to fund ongoing road projects such as
service contracting for public utility vehicle (PUV) drivers, active
transport, PUV modernization, EDSA busway and terminal rehabilitation.
“The challenge lies in the DOTr to disburse the budget faster and make
sure that it reaches those it intends to help,” added Poe. (ai/mtvn)