Palike budget: It's status quo on property tax, trade licence

Civic agency relies on grants and revenue from optical fibre cables

Palike budget: It's status quo on property tax, trade licence

Mayor D Venkatesh Murthy on Friday presented an inflated budget for the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), with an outlay of Rs 8,520.56 crore.

The budget, while putting the anticipated receipts at Rs 8520.56 crore and expenditure at Rs 8519.66 crore, appears to be pinning high hopes on revenue sources, which have failed to deliver in the past. However, the outlay of the budget is Rs 1,400 crore less than that for the previous financial year.

The mayor was firm that the geographical information system based property identification (PId) would fetch the BBMP Rs 3,200 crore. This assertion is despite the fact that the BBMP could earn about Rs 1,250 crore last year.

To achieve the target, the Palike would verify the declaration of the owners of commercial buildings, complexes, malls and huge office spaces under the self assessment scheme. The local body will take the assistance of civil engineering students from Bangalore University for this task. The good news is that there is no proposal of any revision in property tax, advertisement tax and trade licence fee to mop up funds.

For the convenience of property owners, Palike has made a provision in the budget to allow property tax collection in many other banks in Bangalore besides IDBI Bank, Corporation Bank, Indusind Bank and Axis Bank.

The budget largely remains dependent on various State and Central government funds amounting to Rs 1732.88 crore. It also hopes to garner Rs 550 crore from optical fibre cables once the matter is cleared by the Karnataka High Court. Apart from this, the budget expects Rs 107.5 crore from advertisements and penalties under the Disfigurement of Public Places and Environment Act and Rs 25 crore from trade licences.  Mayor said stress has been laid on the present financial condition of the Palike and it has been decided to take up only essential development works. He announced that the BBMP Council will discuss budget on Monday.

Opposition decries

The leader of the Opposition in the Palike Council, M K Gunashekar (Congress), dubbed the budget  ‘Yet another bogus and spillover budget.’
He said the Mayor did not make any remarkable announcement but carried forward most of the old schemes.

“A wonderful opportunity was given by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to present a realistic budget, which the mayor has lost. I will apprise the chief minister about the shortcomings in this inflated budget, asking the BBMP to take corrective measures,” Gunashekar said.

Congress corporators sported black ribbon as a mark of protest against the delay and
‘inflated’ budget. The proceedings of the Council was disrupted for a while when the Congress corporators trooped into the Well of the House raising slogans against the BJP. Some corporators from RajarajeshwariNagar Assembly constituency staged a dharna till the mayor finished his budget speech.

“ There is no difference between the budgets of this year and last year. I do not find anyinteresting proposals thisa time. For past three years, the Palike is announcing signal-free corridors and road improvement works. But, none of them has been implemented,” said JD(S) Floor leader, T Thimme Gowda.

Infra projects

* Rs 50 cr for construction of footpaths
* Rs 28 crore for steel bridge at Shivananda Circle
* Rs 15 crore for underbridge at Magadi Road
* Rs 29 crore for grade separator on Rajajinagar Chord Road and Vatal Nagaraj Road
* Rs 25 crore for Road divider at Malleswaram Maramma Circle and Rajajinagar
* Rs 20 crore for widening Bannerghatta Road
* Rs 30 crore for improvement of 200 main junctions
* Rs 350 crore under JnNURM for diverting drainage path in Mahadevapura

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