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A total of PHP3 billion will be disbursed to drivers and operators of public utility vehicles (PUV) across the country throughout the second phase of the service contracting program (SCP) beginning Friday, according to a report by Philippine News Agency.

The program would work similar to the previous SCP, with faster and "real time" payouts if members of the program have their own Landbank account, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) chief Martin Delgra III said in a virtual relaunch of the SCP on Friday.

“We encourage them to open Landbank accounts. Kasi kung ibang electronic providers, dadaan pa po sa dalawa o tatlong proseso bago nila matanggap. Eh tatakbo ng mga ilang araw po 'yan (Because for other electronic providers, they will go through two or three processes before they receive it. And it will take several days),” Delgra said.

The program's second phase provides incentives to member drivers and operators based on the kilometers their vehicle has traveled and compliance with performance indicators.

During the previous SCP, incentives were based on the maximum number of trips per week and other performance indicators.

While the second phase will have a program manager to oversee the proper disbursement of funds similar to the previous SCP, he said phase two would be monitored by other LTFRB personnel.

In Metro Manila, he said the new SCP would be rolled out in the Edsa Busway and monitored through the Center for PUV Monitoring System established at the LTFRB Central Office.

“Ganun din po ang mangyayari sa ibang ruta, kung saan pwede sila ma-monitor (It will be similar in other routes, where they can be monitored) through GPS in other areas in Metro Manila as well as in the regions,” Delgra said.

The budget for the new SCP—funded under the General Appropriation Act of 2021 (GAA 2021)—is smaller than the PHP5.5 billion SCP that ran under the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act (Bayanihan 2).

However, he said PHP3.38 billion is yet to be disbursed to participants of the previous SCP after the recent release of the funds from the Department of Budget and Management.

“We are now in the process of downloading the funds through the LTFRB para mabayaran na po silang lahat (So they all get paid),” Delgra said.

On Thursday, the LTFRB announced the resumption of the SCP to help the public transportation industry and the riding public during the Covid-19 pandemic.

While the incentives for PUV drivers and operators have begun, it said the “Libreng Sakay" (free ride) program for health workers and other authorized persons outside of residence is eyed to begin next week.

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