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Tamil Nadu News Papers

Solid waste management user charges introduced

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The Hindu         06.07.2017    

Solid waste management user charges introduced

Self-help group members collecting garbage at Gandhi Market in Tiruchi.Photo: M. Moorthy  

Tiruchi Corporation’s move draws flak from a section of residents

The Tiruchi Corporation’s move to introduce a new levy in the form of solid waste management user charges has drawn flak from a section of city residents.

The Corporation has started collecting the charges this financial year. Tax demand notices sent to residents also mention the levy as a separate head. The solid waste management user charges starts from Rs. 30 per half-year at the rate of Rs. 5 a month for a tax assessment of Rs. 500. But it varies, commensurate with the property tax rates of residential buildings. If a resident is liable to pay property tax of Rs. 1,000 for his house, the charge will be Rs. 60 per half-year.

Corporation Special Officer-cum-Commissioner N.Ravichandran said the levy had been introduced as per the government guidelines under the Swachh Bharat Mission. “This is done across the country. But we have fixed the minimum rate of Rs. 5 a month for property tax assessments of Rs. 500. We have followed the due procedure, gazetted it and also issued advertisement,” Mr. Ravichandran told The Hindu .

The charge is being levied to meet at least a portion of the expenditure incurred towards sanitation initiatives. Sources in the Corporation said the user charge had been fixed for residential buildings in the city. The charges for commercial and industrial building would be fixed soon and collected from such property owners too.

Taking exception to the move, S.Pushpavanam, Secretary, Consumer Protection Council, Tamil Nadu, said residents of the city were already paying property, professional tax and water charges, besides underground drainage maintenance charges, so that the Corporation can discharge its duties.

“The primary duty of the Corporation is to keep the city clean by clearing garbage, ensuring sanitation by constructing and maintaining drains and dispose of sewage and laying and maintaining roads. For laying and maintaining roads, it gets special funds from the State Government and it gets funds from State Governments to meet its deficit and for special projects. When such is the case, levying charges for solid waste management separately is bad in law and in ethics. It is an unfair practice,” Mr.Pushpavanam contended. “If this is allowed, tomorrow, they may levy separate charges for cleaning the streets, maintaining drains and paying salaries to staff,” he observed.

No other Corporation such as Madurai, Coimbatore or Tirunelveli has imposed such a tax, he claimed and urged the Tiruchi Corporation authorities to stop collecting the tax and refund it to people who have already paid it.

Other urban local bodies were in the process of fixing and collecting the charges, Mr. Ravichandran pointed out.

 

SPV to be set up soon for smart city project

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The Hindu        06.07.2017   

SPV to be set up soon for smart city project


Landmark skyline:A view of Tiruchi cityPhoto: A. Muralitharan  

It is mandatory for implementing the project

The Tiruchi City Corporation has begun the process of forming a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) for executing the Smart City project.

As per the policy documents of Smart Cities Mission of the Ministry of Urban Development, it is mandatory to float a SPV for implementing the project from planning to execution. It will plan, appraise, approve, release funds, implement, manage, operate, monitor and evaluate the smart city development projects.

The SPV will have a full time Chief Executive Officer with the nominees of State and Central governments, and it has to be registered with the Companies Act. Besides using the government grants for infrastructure building, the SPV will have powers to raise private equity and funds for the projects. These could be executed through joint ventures, subsidiaries and public-private partnership.

It is learnt that senior officials of Tiruchi Corporation visited Chennai on Tuesday for a discussion with the senior officials of the Commissionerate of Municipal Administration to evolve the modalities for forming the Special Purpose Vehicle.

N. Ravichandran, Commissioner cum Special Officer, Tiruchi Corporation, told The Hindu that he had received a detailed instruction manual for forming SPV. Steps had been initiated to register the SPV under the Companies Act.

A senior IAS officer would be the Chairman of SPV. Tiruchi Corporation Commissioner would be the Managing Director. The Central Government would also nominate a person for it. Similarly, a number of persons, who were directly associated with the Corporation, would be made as members.

Mr. Ravichandran said a clear picture on formation of SPV would emerge within a two weeks. Formation of SPV would be completed within July. A seven sq km area in and around Rockfort temple would be the focus of area development plan of the Smart City project. It would address all issues including traffic congestion, parking, open drainages, roads and others. Chathiram Bus Stand and Gandhi Market would also be remodelled.

The Government had asked to re-modify the Smart City proposal with some changes. The re-modified plan would be submitted to the State government within 15 days.

 

Corporation to resume UGD work to link Ondipudur STP

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The Hindu     06.07.2017    

Corporation to resume UGD work to link Ondipudur STP


The underground drainage project appears to reach finality with the civic body planning to take up work on Trichy Road in the city.S. SIVA SARAVANANS_ SIVA SARAVANAN  

The civic body will lay the underground main sewer lines for over 20 km

After many false starts, the civic body seems to be ready to complete the last leg of the underground drainage (UGD) project.

The last leg work involves laying underground sewer lines along and across Trichy Road to convey sewage from 17 wards to the sewage treatment plant in Ondipudur.

NHAI permission

The Corporation could not complete the work in the normal course because it had failed to obtain the permission from the National Highways Authority of India for laying the sewer lines on Trichy Road.

After a delay of over a year, the Corporation made an attempt sometime in 2016 but could not secure the permission.

Now, again, after six months, the Corporation was all set to resume work as it had obtained NHAI permission, said sources. The Corporation would lay the underground main sewer lines for over 20 km and ‘lateral’ sewer lines for around six km. It would cut across Trichy Road at 12 places, including near Rajaji Nagar, Kothari Layout, Vivekananda Layout and Pattanam Road. For carrying out the project, the Corporation had also paid Rs. 5 crore to NHAI.

Once completed, the Corporation would be able to convey sewage from areas north and south of Trichy Road to the Ondipudur sewage treatment plant and this would mark the completion of the project the Corporation had taken up in 2010-11 under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission, the sources added.

 


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