Civic chief proposes budget cut of Rs 200 cr
Presents Rs 5,397 crore budget; 15 pc hike in property and water taxes proposed
Pune: Municipal Commissioner Kunal Kumar, presented the proposed budget for the year 2018-19 before the General Body of the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) on Monday.
The budget presented for the previous year stood at Rs 5,600 crore while the budget for this year stands at Rs 5,397 crore, a cut of around Rs 200 crore.
The budget cut comes in the wake of reduced local revenues and failure in creating new revenue sources for the civic body. The civic chief, while tabling the proposed budget, said it was focused on "creating an inclusive development environment for the city as well as the new villages surrounding the city which have recently been included in the purview of PMC."
He said the PMC will focus on e-governance, Aadhaar linking, cashless transactions and improving social benefit delivery.
Dip in revenue
Until last year, PMC earned Rs 1,730 crore from local body taxes (LBT), which were scrapped due to the Goods and Services Tax (GST). The earnings from the construction and development tax also were only 30-35 per cent of expected revenue for the last year.
The civic body's failure to create new sources of revenue resulted in increase of extraction from current revenue sources.
Proposed hike in taxes
The budget proposes a hike of almost 15 per cent in property tax and water tax. The revenue from the two taxes was Rs 1,333.60 crore and Rs 319.67 crore respectively for the previous year, have been projected to stand at Rs 1,619.60 crore and Rs 339.90 crore respectively for this year.
The budget for the coming year focuses on completion of ongoing projects like Riverbed Development, Metro, BRT and flyovers. “We will try to bring the average speed of traffic in the city to 30 km per hour from the current 18 and number of public transport buses per lakh population will be increased to 50 from the current 30,” Kumar said.