Being a coastal city vulnerable to climate change, Kochi needs a strategy to mitigate the effects of rising sea levels, Sarada G. Muraleedharan, Additional Chief Secretary, Local Self-Government department, said here on Sunday, while addressing Bodhi, a national urban development conclave.
Cities like Kochi need agile and adaptable plans, and not infinite master plans.
Civic bodies must reach beyond daily administrative matters and implement futuristic plans, while striving to mobilise their own funds.
Modern garbage treatment systems, slaughterhouse and litter-free public spaces are easily attainable, if there is focused work, she added.
Engaging local bodies as engines for economic growth is of paramount importance, since suggestions and ideas for development come from the grassroots level, Principal Secretary of the department Sharmila Mary Joseph said.
“But the 15th Finance Commission grants are insufficient to propel growth at the level of local bodies. They must hence optimise revenue collection in the form of property tax and professional tax. Civic bodies must also explore the possibility of issuing municipal bonds to raise funds,” she added.
Hibi Eden, MP, said that Kochi was yet to ready a drainage master plan, despite severe inundation during rains.