The cash-strapped East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) has decided to scrap proposals to impose new taxes in the financial year 2019-20.
To cope with losses, then EDMC commissioner Puneet Goel had in December proposed three new taxes – betterment tax, education cess and professional tax — in the budget proposals for 2019-20.
Goel had proposed a 15% betterment charge and a 5%education cess on the annual property tax. The betterment tax was to be imposed in areas with better connectivity, parks and wider roads.
However, EDMC’s standing committee chairman Satyapal Singh in his budget speech on Tuesday said no additional taxes would be imposed in 2019-20. There were no big announcements in the budget presentation and no major changes from the proposals tabled by Goel.
“There will be no new tax in the financial year 2019-20. We did not want to put additional burden on the residents of east Delhi and so the three proposed taxes have been scrapped,” he said.
Singh held the Delhi government responsible for the poor financial status of the east corporation.
“Imposing new taxes cannot be the only solution to increase revenue, but the Delhi government will have to pay us funds as recommended by the 4th Finance Commission. The 5th Finance Commission has also given its recommendations but the government is not paying us accordingly,” Singh said.
There are 2.15 lakh taxpayers in east Delhi and the civic agency is trying to increase its tax collection by announcing an amnesty scheme.
The EDMC’s revised budget estimate for financial year 2019-20 stands at Rs 4,635.01 crore. A major chunk of this budget (36.97%) will be spent on general administration, 20.4% on environmental service, 19.17% on education, 7.9% on health, 8.37% on construction and 2.49% on parks and gardens.
To strengthen garbage management system, there is a plan to procure 50 battery-operated litter pickers, 64 auto-mounted litter pickers, 20 fixed compactors, six mechanical sweepers, 10 accelerated compost machines, two super sucker machines. Two bio-methanisation plants with a capacity of five tonnes a day would be set up.
New schools will be constructed in Karawal Nagar, Johripur, Mansarovar Park, east of Loni road, Krishna Nagar, Radhepuri, West Azad Nagar, Geeta Colony, New Kondli and Trilokpuri.
In his budget speech, Singh also said the advertisement rights were being allotted for 36 unipoles on NH-24 and NH-9 and for 164 unioples on other roads which would bring additional revenue of Rs 10 crore annually..