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Saturday, January 28, 2023

Kochi Corporation to focus on collection of property tax, user fees

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The cash-strapped Kochi Corporation is planning to improve its financial position by focusing on collection of property tax and various user fees.

The civic body hopes to improve property tax collection at least by 30%. For user fees, the Corporation has set a target of collecting ₹2 crore during the current fiscal. Property tax will be collected online. Payment can be made through WhatsApp.

The facility for property tax payment through Google Pay and PhonePe will become operational in 20 days. All bills above ₹500 will be collected only through online mode, the Corporation Secretary informed the council meeting on Thursday.

A special session of the Corporation council will be convened shortly to discuss the financial position of the civic body, Mayor M. Anilkumar told the council.

The civic body will focus on curbing illegal functioning of commercial establishments from residential buildings, which results in significant revenue loss. Building inspectors will probe whether some five-star hotels are evading tax payment, he said.

There are around 3 lakh buildings in the city. The Corporation will pay attention to collecting taxes from owners of commercial buildings. The civic body has to set apart a significant sum towards payment of salary to its employees, transportation of waste to the processing plant at Brahmapruam, drinking water supply, and waste treatment at Brahmapuram, pointed out some souncillors.

The State government has approved the bylaw prepared by the civic body for the rehabilitation of street workers, said Mr. Anilkumar. He also warned against the unauthorised street vending.

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