Cess may go up as civic authority battles solid waste management woes
With the garbage disposal system in a mess after two landfills closed, the immediate fallout may be on the pockets of citizens in Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) limits. The civic authority is mooting a doubling of the garbage cess though the decision will be taken at the council meeting at the end of the month.
The proposal is said to have gained steam following increased garbage transportation costs to landfills at Mandur and the one near Rajarajeshwarinagar, after the two at Mavallipura and Terrafarma were closed.
The cost of providing compensatory facilities to those living near these landfills is also a factor in the new rates.
A BBMP delegation, including Mayor D. Venkatesh Murthy, met Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar in Bangalore on Tuesday to put forth its proposals, which include identifying new temporary landfills. The city generates close to 5,000 tonnes of garbage a day.
The decision to levy the cess on all properties was taken in 2011 after the BBMP found itself spending Rs. 200 crore a year on solid waste management. There are separate slabs and the cess is paid along with property tax.
Currently, residential properties built on an area less than 1,000 sq. ft are charged Rs. 10 a month, 1,001 sq. ft to 3,000 sq. ft Rs. 30, and over 3,001 sq. ft, Rs. 50.
However, S. Venkatesh Babu, who heads the BBMP’s Standing Committee on Public Health, said a hike in garbage cess was a distant prospect as at least five new projects for solid waste management were in the pipeline.
“We are also asking for more compactors than trucks as they are more efficient,” he said. Tuesday’s meeting was to discuss the reviewed estimation for garbage collection tenders, he added.