Vellore Mayor P Karthiyayini presented a tax-free budget for the year 2013-2014 at an urgent meeting convened at the Corporation Office on Wednesday.
An estimated income of Rs 131.93 crore was being expected by the Corporation for the coming financial year from various taxes. While the expenditure was calculated at Rs 132.06 crore, the deficit was arrived at Rs 13.42 lakh.
The Budget and Taxation Committee president and 8th ward councillor V Elavarasi released the budget. Reading the budget, Karthiyayini said, a sum of Rs 67.37 crore had been allotted for various works and schemes, including Rs 44.04 crore for development of infrastructure such as hospitals, buildings, public toilets, parks, bus stand, electric crematorium, bridges, channels, streetlights and roads under the revenue and capital fund.
An amount of `21.22 crore had been allotted for drinking water supply and rainwater drains under the water supply and drainage fund and `2.12 crore for school buildings under the primary school fund.
Karthiyayini said plans to construct commercial complexes at the old corporation premises, establishing science parks, parks at important junctions, planting 50,000 saplings in the city and new offices for four zones were in the pipeline.
Karthiyayini also noted, “Emphasis will be laid on development of existing parks, desilting of the lakes in the city, opening the new fish market for public use, modernisation of the Netaji Market, besides chalking out special plans for generating power through solar energy under the solid waste management scheme and establishing ‘Siddha Medical Mooligai Pannai’ at the Corporation premises.”
A study will be conducted to implement Geographic Information System (GIS), a system that had been designed to capture and present all types of geographical data, through which the tax collection by every house and building could be monitored.
A study will also be conducted on assessing the possibilities of constructing bridges in the city.
Meanwhile, the budget meeting attracted controversy with some councillors alleging that they had little time to prepare.