Fee for 10,000 high school students waived
GUNTUR: The Guntur Municipal Corporation (GMC) finally approved the Rs.163-crore budget proposals for the financial year 2008-09 and also the revised estimates for 2007-08 on Saturday at the special budget meeting with no major changes in the tax proposals or provisions for expenditure.
The council meeting was unique as it was the first to be chaired by the new Mayor Rayapati Mohan Sai Krishna and also the budget was introduced by the former Mayor Kanna Nagaraju and passed by Mr. Sai Krishna.
The net cash-surplus corporation waived the fee for some 10,000 high school students and reduced the quantum of hike for 24,000 under-assessed households by 50 per cent following pressure from corporators of both the ruling and opposition parties.
The GMC got a survey done on the quantum of tax being levied on 71,500 households by students of Acharya Nagarjuna University and found out that 24,000 of the households were under-assessed. Revised tax was calculated as per the existing rates and notices issued on various assessees. This raised many an eyebrow and corporators did not see reason in the argument that those people were paying less than what they should have been paying for several years. Municipal Commissioner Siddhartha Jain explained that there was no hike in property tax and it was only regularising the under-assessed properties. Finally, the issue settled after the Mayor announced reduction of hike in tax by 50 per cent.
Heated debate was witnessed on collection of 2 per cent cess on change of title for apartment owners, the way ANU Survey was done under APUSP and demolishing the unauthorised building of a corporate college on Lakshmipuram Road.
Guntur MP Rayapati Sambasiva Rao was also present in the meeting.