No property tax increase in NDMC Budget

The NDMC has decided not to increase property tax rates in the budget for the next financial year, which unveiled its smart city blueprint.

Smart Parking Management System in 116 parking spaces, LED street lights with Wi-Fi, public toilets with Wi-Fi and solar power panels, round-the-clock potable water supply, new commercial complex at Yashwant Place near Chanakya Cinema, mechanised sweeping in night, increased green cover, smart classrooms in school, 250-bed super-speciality hospital and Ayush Polyclinic, and three real-time air quality monitoring systems with LED screens were some highlights of the budget proposals.

Announcing the projects and plans to raise the civic agency’s revenue receipts by over five per cent, New Delhi Municipal Council chairperson Naresh Kumar said on Wednesday: “The NDMC has vision to become the global benchmark for a capital city.”

As against receipts of Rs 3,286.89 crore in 2015-16, the civic agency will target to collect Rs 3,458.33 crore in 2016-17. Of the projected receipts, 39 per cent would come from fee and user charges and 15 per cent each from tax revenue and licence fee.

“We have decided not to increase property tax rates. Yet we are targeting to increase the collection by 15 per cent. We plan to increase collection of electricity charges by five per cent,” said Kumar.

Almost 37 per cent of the total proposed expenditure of Rs 3,450.81 crore would be on electricity. Overall, the NDMC plans to raise its spending by about 12 per cent as against that projected in 2015-16.

The projects which failed to take off in the last fiscal – like a football academy and waste to energy plant – would also be executed after discussions to overcome minor hurdles, said Kumar.

“We are checking with the Ridge authority if the spot identified for the football academy at Shera Maidan falls in a no-construction green zone. The waste to energy plant is awaiting pollution clearance and notification of power purchase rates by power regulator,” he said.

Kumar said work was also underway to use the vacant Gole Market as a museum.

“After selection in stage 1 of the Smart City Mission, we have submitted the proposal to the Urban Development Ministry. If we get selected, the NDMC is expected to receive an amount of Rs 194 crore from the government in form of tied grants as first installment, which will be matched by an equal contribution from the NDMC,” Kumar said.

The NDMC also proposed to create a storehouse of health records of all students in schools, ramp up sports facilities in schools, evaluate teachers’ performance scientifically, introduce cloud-based hospital management information system to improve healthcare services, water ATMs at 24 slum clusters within the NDMC limits and rehabilitation of old water and sewer system.

The civic agency plans to increase its green cover from 48 per cent to 50 per cent within its territory, as against the city average of 21 per cent. Lodhi Garden, Talkatora Garden, Nehru Park and Rose Garden on Shanti Path would also get a touch-up along with 27 rainwater harvesting systems.

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