On budget eve, BBMP scours for income sources

BBMP has come up with a slew of measures to improve its financial health even before tabling the 'realistic budget' in the Palike Council.

After a high-level meeting, Mayor R Sharadamma and her Deputy S Harish told reporters about the measures Palike would initiate in the future to improve its financial position.

Besides pinning hopes on grants from the State government, the Palike has decided to upgrade the revenue zones in the four commercial areas of Mahadevapura, Peenya-Dasarahalli, Yelahanka and Electronics City from F-zone to A-zone.

It has also decided to bring 2.5 lakh properties in the tax net, reorganise eight Palike zones in a rational way, strictly collect fees on trade licences and set up a Transfer of Developmental Rights Bank (TDR Bank).

He said the Palike would generate good revenue from betterment charges once the government cleared the proposal.

Deputy Mayor Harish said: “Palike collects only Rs four per sq ft as property tax from the commercial establishments in Mahadevapura, Peenya-Dasarahalli, Yelahanka and Electronics City, though the booming commercial activities there warrant them to be brought under ‘A’ zone, with a fee of Rs 20 per sq ft.”

The Palike has set a target of Rs 1,950 crore from property tax this year, which includes collection of previous years' balance of Rs 438 crore. “There are some 15 lakh properties in the City, of which 12.5 lakh have been brought under the tax net. The remaining 2.5 lakh properties have to be brought within the ambit of property tax," Harish said.

According to the Palike survey, there are at least 2.19 lakh shops and commercial establishments in the City and a revenue of Rs 338 crore can be generated from them.

Palike expects to get Rs 10 crore from dishonoured cheques of tax assessees.

The Palike has also set its eyes on an additional Rs 450 crore in the form of betterment charges, provided the proposal gets the approval of the State Cabinet. The Palike also wants to start a TDR Bank from which it expects to generate Rs 500 crore and an additional Rs 150 crore from garbage cess.

Harish said the Palike would propose a realistic budget.

"It will be a budget without any spill-overs. We will also ensure that projects which did not take of start will not be construed as spill over from the previous year and will not be perceived as incomplete. Instead, new job codes will be issued for such works," Harish said.

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