$1B MORE FOR JEEP : Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme (JEEP) works include road rehabilitation, pothole patching spending close to $1 billion across 63 constituencies

By Balford Henry, Senior Staff Reporter balfordh@jamaicaobserver.com  Monday, November 02, 2015    
Front cover of today's paperTHE Government is spending close to $1 billion across 63 constituencies under Phase 5 of the Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme (JEEP).
During this phase, the 63 Members of Parliament (MP) will have access to $10 million per constituency, while parish and Kingston and St Andrew Corporation councillors will get a total of $70 million.
The National Works Agency (NWA), in a submission to the House of Representatives' Public Administration and Appropriations Committee recently, said that so far, of 67 contracts to be executed across the 63 constituencies, 66 contracts for 62 of the constituencies have been prepared, and 51 contracts have already started to take effect in 48 constituencies.
China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) has an additional 15 contracts to approve.
The outstanding project, which is for the St Andrew North Eastern constituency represented by Opposition MP Delroy Chuck, is still at the designing stage, but preparation is expected shortly.
Richard Azan, minister of state in the Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing, said phase five is scheduled for completion by November 30.
Azan said the programme of works under JEEP Five include road rehabilitation, pothole patching, repairs to walls, gratings, sidewalks, drains, bridges, and retaining wall construction.
Brown Town Road before the JEEP project
 upgrade. (PHOTOS: BRIDGET DIXON)
He said an amount of $930 million has been allocated for works across the 63 constituencies during the 2015/2016 financial year. An additional $78.2 million will be spent on the rehabilitation of parish council roads islandwide.
The NWA said that negotiations have started with CHEC on the main works component of the Major Infrastructure Development Programme, which has replaced the Jamaica Development Infrastructure Programme under the current Government. CHEC has also expressed interest in executing rehabilitation works on the 11- kilometre Chovey to Highgate road, as well as the Mandeville via Swaby's Hope to Spur Tree corridor, for which design work is progressing. more

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