VIJAYAWADA: Amidst uproarious scenes by the YSRC and CPI members, the Vijayawada Municipal corporation council adopted Rs 470.96 crore revenue budget for 2015-16 on Wednesday. However the corporation has not presented the capital expenditure budget on account of model code of conduct in force in view of elections to the legislative council.
The cash-strapped Vijayawada Municipal Corporation (VMC) presented a budget of Rs 486.94 crore including the opening balance of Rs 15.98 crore and a projected expenditure at Rs 400.22 crores with a surplus of Rs 86.71 crore.
The VMC, however, did not mention any tax hike in the budget and mainly focused on the collection of dues from the public and the government effectively. The income generated through property tax was Rs 70.17 crore for 2013-14 and it would be Rs 120 crore in 2014-15. Now, the property tax revenue is projected at Rs 132 crore.
“We are not hiking property tax and we will mainly focus on tax defaulters with the revenue survey. Even the income generated through property tax increased to Rs 80 crore from Rs 72 crore and in the recent survey 31,000 vacant lands were identified, where the landlords are irregular in paying the taxes and with all these sources now we will reach the target of Rs 132 crores,” explained Mayor Koneru Sridhar.
In the revenue budget 2015-16, the revenue expected through D and O trade licence is Rs 10.50 crore, Rs 9.65 crore through the sale of vacant lands and buildings of VMC and Rs 12 crores through rents collection from shopping malls, complexes and about Rs 5.50 crore from central and state government properties and also Rs 30.98 crores with water supply in the city.
However, the budget session concluded with the usual unruly scene with heated exchanges between the members of the YSRC and those of the TDP. YSRC and CPI members claimed that the corporation planned to impose a burden of Rs 148 crore through taxes and criticised that the budget was ‘Anti-people’ since it had nothing for the disadvantaged sections.
“The corporation has failed to get funds from the central and state governments. The budget is pessimistic, which completely neglected the poor and focused on collecting more money from them,” said G Adi Lakshmi, CPI floor leader and submitted a memorandum for the revision of the revenue budget 2015-16.
The YSRC floor leader BN Punyaseela expressed dissatisfaction over provisions in the budget 2015-16. “It is an ill-planned budget and not enough funds were allocated for welfare of the people,” she said.