The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) is set to have a new provincial office in Masbate in a bid to maximize the assistance to local farmers in the province through land ownership.
The construction of the five-storey building is in coordination with the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and will have a budget of P67 million from the General Appropriations Act (GAA) under the 2023 Infrastructure Program.
Josephine F. Gime, DPWH’s chief of Quality Assurance Section, said the new DAR building in Masbate will have ground floor parking, a roof deck, and an elevator for persons with disabilities (PWDs).
Since it is a big project, Gime said its construction was divided into two phases.
"Construction of Phase I costs P37,398,922.80, and it is projected to be completed on March 10, 2023," said Gime, adding that P30 million had already been allocated for the Phase II of the project.
Rodrigo O. Realubit, DAR Bicol’s regional director, said DAR-Masbate has been utilizing its old building since 1988.
"As we look forward to the future completion of this structure, may it serve as a source of inspiration for us to further commit to achieving our mandate and responsibilities as stewards of farmers and helping our farm communities," he said in a statement.
DAR employees in the province are now working in a rented apartment as the demolition of the old office has already started.