Thursday, May 26, 2005

Regency Honoured at Rotary District Assembly

District Governor Lucky Pieris presented a special award at the recently held Rotary District Assembly for creating this Web Log ( Blog site) and helping to create worldwide awareness and support for Tsunami victims

The plaque reads as follows -

"In recognition of outstanding efforts in the establishment of a Website towards worldwide awareness, information and assistance in the aftermath of the Tsunami and its impact and success, this award is presented to the Rotary Club of Colombo Regency for their dedication and commitment." - "Lucky Pieris, District Governor 2004/ 05"

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Finance Report as at 30th April 2005

1. Income & Expense Summary as at 30th April 2005

Total Donations received as at 30th April 2005 Rs. 43,353,763.43

1. Dry Rations ------ Rs. 2,139,103.39
2. Medicine ---------Rs. 812,440.40
3. Household Effects ( eg. Pillows, sheets, pots & pans) ----Rs. 2,230,139.50
4. Personal Effects ( eg. Underwear, baby bottles, sarongs etc) ---Rs. 786,967.75
5. Livelihood Projects ( eg. Outboat motors etc) ----Rs. 400,000.00
6. Mobile Toilets ------Rs. 900,000.00
7. Rotary Club of Kandy Metropolitan ----Rs. 48,462.00

Total Expenses on Tsunami Relief-------------Rs. 7,317,113.04

Tsunami Relief Fund Balance ----------------- Rs. 36,036,650.39

Point 5 in the last report was shown as Rs. 900,000. Of this Rs. 500,000 was for Mobile toilets, which has now been shown as a separate expense item. During April a further Rs. 400,000 worth of toilets were ordered.

Point 7 above relates to a donation of US $ 500 made by credit card, that had been accidentally sent to our club, when the donor intended it to be sent to the Rotary Club of Kandy Metropolitan.

2. Administration Income & Expenses

Administration & logistics related expenses have been recovered against interest income earned by placing the available funds in overnight government treasury bills ( securities)

Total Interest Income Earned -----Rs. 561,071.83

Less :Admin, Transport & Logistic Expenses ------- Rs. 108,710.00

Balance Available -------Rs. 452,361.83

**** We promised to give you information regarding how the balance funds for projects would be allocated among our 3 main project areas. At this point we are waiting for estimates of costs on each of the projects. Hopefully we should have this information ( mainly housing and schools) within the next 2 weeks, at which point we can indicate how our existing funds will be allocated and what our funding shortfall is. *****

School Project - Developments...Do Read!

Just to clarify for donor information - the architects that we had been working with thus far were introduced to us through a Rotarian who is a senior member of the Sri Lanka architects association. They were introduced to us on the grounds that their services would be free of charge.

As you would have noted in the letter ( posted below)- the architects quote that their services were free up to the point of the 'preliminary estimates' which were submitted to us on 15th of March.....2 months afterwards they start talking fees.....hmmmm! Why not bring this up in wonders!

Today we just had a meeting with the Rotary District APEX committee for school projects headed by PDG Ravindran ( a real Rotary stalwart) - and told them our predicament. The answer was plain and simple ...... firstly that it was very unprofessional on the part of the architects to hold us to ransom at the last moment, and secondly that Rotary should and will manage this project by getting architects and other professionals who wish to donate their time towards rebuilding this country. Its not a commercial venture for anyone. Of course we will spend on actual costs incurred in consumable items and transport etc but man hours should be a donation.

Luckily for us the Rotarian from the institute of architects was also present at this meeting, and though he argued that architects should charge and no clubs will find free services like the APEX committee expects - it was proven that 23 of the 25 schools have got free services ( funnily enough it was the two clubs that went through the SLIA that got served fees last week......). We understand that to charge is a professional's right, but we are looking for professionals who can afford to donate time and effort.

So the APEX committee came to the rescue - we were immediatley given an architect ( A Rotarian from Millenium City). She has already done one school and is willing to take ours and complete the documents up to tender stage in two weeks ( wow....why didn't we meet her before...!). So as it is we will be meeting with the current architect on Monday and asking the minimum fee to get the site plan released ( we have a copy already - but its only right that we pay basic amounts and sever this relationship properly) and then we get cracking - all this on Monday! So there is a silver lining after all!

Keep your fingers crossed guys....leave the rest up to us!

Thursday, May 12, 2005

The Latest BUZZ on the School Project - An expensive BUZZ!!

The architects have thrown us a real whammy!! It looks like the feeling of love and concern for all is on the down ward trend. Our architects have now come back to us with a ..... bill, before they can release any of the docs relating to the school. Its unfortunate that they maintained humm about it this long, and thereby lead us to believe that there were no costs for their services.

Having said that - a little birdy told me that the architects association have apprently advised all architects working for Tsunami related projects to charge a minimum amount ( which is still pretty high since its a % of the total project cost), and therefore we have got the following letter sent to us ( read below). At this stage we are in a bit of a fix, since we cant start from scratch we are taking a decision on how we will spend on this at the club meeting today. Anyone have any comments? Post them!

This is the letter from our architects......


This has reference to the conversation we had with you, and pleased to
forward you the schedule of services and distribution of fees for each

As decided by the Sri Lanka Institute of Architects Layout and other drawings
related to the schematic design proposal and preliminary cost estimates were
done on a honorary basis for tsunami projects.

Consultancy services beyond schematic design, will be charged as listed
below. SLIA recommended fee scale for consortium consultancy services
is usually between 8.6 – 8.4 % of the total project cost for projects between
40-60 Million. Our proposed fee scale for this project will be 3% of the
of the total cost. As per the preliminary estimate total building cost is
around 50 Million.

Work stage Fees Rs:
*Architectural designs All plans,Elevations,sections
and drawings. Permit drawings, Setting out
Plans, Detail layout drawings,
Schedule of finishes, Detail
schedule of Doors and windows,
Detailed specifications of Materials
And finishes. ------ Rs. 600,000.00

*Structural engineers
designs and drawings. -------- Rs. 400,000.00

*Electrical Engineers
designs and drawings. ---------- Rs. 100,000.00

*Services drawings for
plumbing. ------- Rs. 50,000.00

*Preparing of Bill of quantities,. ------------Rs. 250,000.00

*Checking of Bills.-------------- Rs.100,000.00

TOTAL ------------------------Rs. 1,500,000.00

Periodic Inspection of works at site @ Rs.10,000/- per visit.(Excluding Transport)

Hoping to receive from you favorably at your earliest."