By Francis Allan L. Angelo
The Department of Public Works and Highways headed by Sec. Manuel Bonoan has approved the P168.3-million funding for the repair of three key bridges in the 4th district of Iloilo that were damaged at the height of Typhoon Agaton in April 2022.
The office of 4th district Rep. Ferjenel G. Biron, who facilitated the funding, confirmed the information through a sub-allotment advice that DPWH released on Aug 10, 2022.
DPWH authorized its office in Region 6 through the 2nd District Engineering Office in Dumangas, Iloilo to spend the funds for the repair and rehabilitation of the Monfort Bridge in Dingle town and Agtambo and Alimono Bridges in Passi City.
The funding was drawn from the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management fund in Republic Act 11639 or the 2022 General Appropriations Act.
Based on the Special Allotment Release Order from the Department of Budget and Management, the funds will be spent on the following damaged bridges:
-rehabilitation of the 5 spans of pre-stressed concrete girders of Monfort Bridge, particularly the reconstruction of spans 1 to 2 and retrofitting of the remaining 3 spans (P60 million);
-construction of the 60-meter pre-stressed concrete girder of Alimono bridge, including approaches (P60 million); and
– construction of the 50-meter pre-stressed concrete girder of Agtambo bridge, including approaches (P50 million)
Right after typhoon Agaton struck in April, Rep. Biron and his son, then congressman now Dumangas Mayor Braeden John Biron, pledged to hasten the release of funds from the national government to repair the three bridges and other road infrastructures.
The Birons initially facilitated the release of funds from the Immediate Response Fund and/or the Quick Response Fund of the DPWH for the initial repairs of the damaged infrastructures.
Rep. Biron said the immediate repairs will minimize the economic impact brought about by these damaged infrastructures.
At that time, the DPWH 2nd District Engineering Office under Engr. Sanny Boy O. Oropel estimated that more than P300 million were needed to rehabilitate and repair the damaged infrastructures.
Apart from the three bridges, the other damaged infrastructures included portions of the Passi-San Rafael-Lemery-Sara Road, Iloilo-Capiz Road in Dueñas and Passi City, Passi-Calinog Road in Gines Viejo, Passi City; Barotac Nuevo-Polot-An-Bangga Banate Road in Barotac Nuevo, Balabag-Maquina-Cayos-Patlad Road in Dumangas, Iloilo-East Coast Capiz Road in Dumangas, Passi-San Enrique-Garrita Road in San Enrique, Pototan-Tabugon Road in Dingle, among others.