Sta. Barbara mayor builds ‘cheaper but quality’ classrooms

March 11, 2009 at 9:13 am 1 comment

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

STA. BARBARA –- Is there corruption in the construction of government-funded school buildings?

In this town, a privately donated one school classroom complete with toilet and blackboards cost only P250,000 while a classroom built by the Department of Public Works and Highways cost P500,000, without a toilet and blackboards.

Mayor Reynaldo Velasco said classrooms are cheaper here because he the barangay captains whose villages hosted the construction did not take a single centavo as bribe money from private building contractors.

“I told the contractor to lower his profit since he would be building plenty of them,” Velasco said.

Since June 2007, Velasco has built about 180 “cheap but quality” classrooms financed by donations from residents and friends.

Velasco said one of the factors that lowered the cost of construction was the enlistment of local labor.

Senator Panfilo Lacson, who once visited this town, was amazed to learn about the big discrepancy in cost between the privately donated classrooms and government-funded classrooms.

“I just learned that in this town, it cost only P250,000 to build a classroom with complete with amenities, while it cost the same school house P245,000 without those amenities in Metro Manila”

When asked how much goes to corruption in the DPWH-built school building Velasco said: “Tanungin niyo iyong mga tumatanggap. Hindi ko alam iyon, kasi hindi naman ako tumatangap. At saka hindi kami gumagawa ng ganoon dito (You ask those who are on the take. I don’t have any idea about it since I don’t resort to corruption .We don’t do that anomaly here.”

When asked about the scandalously big difference in the cost of construction, DPWH 2nd Engineering District head Rodolfo “Boy” Dion said that privately-funded school classrooms are not taxable by the government unlike the DPWH-supervised school buildings, which are loaded by government-sanctioned taxes and deductions.

In a P485,000 classroom, he said, taxes deducted include engineering and administrative Overhead, 3.5 percent; value added tax, 12 percent; contractor’s profit, 10 percent; overhead contingency, 10 percent.

The deductions comprise about 35.5 percent of the project cost or P174,600 in a P485,000 classroom.

Entry filed under: News. Tags: , , .

The imperative of nuke power A corrupt government official!

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. nayarisirin  |  March 30, 2009 at 1:02 am

    nayarin talaga si mayor velasco ^^


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