Stand­still bud­get for Bulilima

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Sukul­wenkosi Dube-Matutu Plumtree Cor­re­spon­dent

BULILIMA Ru­ral Dis­trict Coun­cil has pro­posed a $2,5 mil­lion stand­still bud­get for 2017 as it seeks to im­prove ser­vice de­liv­ery.

The lo­cal au­thor­ity’s 2017 bud­get is tar­get­ing the con­struc­tion of health and ed­u­ca­tion in­fra­struc­ture as well as the ser­vic­ing of res­i­den­tial stands.

A to­tal of $24 000 has been set aside to cater for health and ed­u­ca­tion in­fra­struc­ture while $76 600 has been al­lo­cated to­wards fi­nanc­ing a coun­cil farm project aimed at boost­ing rev­enue col­lec­tion.

Mr Tap­son Hanyane, the coun­cil’s fi­nance com­mit­tee chair­per­son sub­mit­ted the pro­posed bud­get at a full coun­cil meet­ing.

“The pro­posed 2017 es­ti­mate is a stand­still bud­get. Pro­vi­sions for the year 2017 stand at $2, 578 136 while the 2016 bud­get was at $2, 568 039.

“The dif­fer­ence has been ne­ces­si­tated by the de­crease in the num­ber of trad­ing li­cences. How­ever, rates will re­main the same,” he said.

Mr Hanyane said coun­cil had al­lo­cated sig­nif­i­cant re­sources to­wards the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor to en­sure that or­phans get proper ed­u­ca­tion and new schools would be con­structed to re­duce dis­tances trav­elled by chil­dren.

He said coun­cil would con­trib­ute to­wards ren­o­vat­ing clin­ics and ac­quir­ing clinic ma­te­rial as well as the con­struc­tion and main­te­nance of roads.

“The lo­cal au­thor­ity has also al­lo­cated sig­nif­i­cant re­sources to­wards road con­struc­tion and main­te­nance as well as com­ple­tion of wait­ing moth­ers’ shel­ters. The coun­cil farm will also help to boost rev­enue col­lec­tion.

“The main ac­tiv­ity at the farm is cat­tle ranch­ing and coun­cil is set to in­tro­duce poul­try projects. The projects that have been lined up for the year 2017 will be com­ple­mented by com­mu­nity sup­port and other ini­tia­tives,” said Mr Hanyane.

He said by Au­gust 31 the lo­cal au­thor­ity had only col­lected $411 229 of the pro­jected 2016 bud­get. He said the low col­lec­tion rate caused lim­ited ser­vice de­liv­ery to com­mu­ni­ties and also in­creased debts.

Mr Hanyane said coun­cil’s main debtors were unit tax pay­ers, de­vel­op­ment levy and stand rentals pay­ers.

He said some rate pay­ers owed coun­cil unit tax pay­ments for the year 2013 and 2014.

The new bud­get comes at a time when coun­cil owes $755 195 to cred­i­tors.

Bulilima Ru­ral Dis­trict Coun­cil Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer, Mr John Brown, said the lo­cal au­thor­ity was in the process of con­sult­ing vil­lagers in all 22 wards of the dis­trict on next year’s bud­get.— @DubeMatutu.

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