The NMC is set to miss property tax target by almost 50% this year. Till March 12, the civic body issued only 4.70 lakh invoices (amounting to Rs413 crore) and collected only 42.51% of the tax amount.
Property tax is one of the top sources of revenue for the civic body.
The property tax revenue target for the current fiscal was set at 501 crore including arrears of 300 crore and municipal commissioner Abhijit Bangar recently revised the target to 275 crore, but the 10 zonal commissioners could collect only 64% of it (or 175.65 crore) till March 12 this year.
According to data compiled by NMC’s property tax department, Ashi Nagar zone is the worst performer. The zone distributed 79,655 tax invoices (amounting to Rs57.67 crore). But it so far recovered only Rs14.28 crore which included Rs7.88 crore as tax arrears.
The performance of Nehru Nagar zone is no good either. Against a target of Rs71.73 crore (62,925 tax invoices), the zone has so far recovered only Rs14.33 crore, while Mangalwari zone has achieved more than 41.36% with Rs23.34 crore and distributed 44,469 invoices estimating a tax of Rs51.34 crore.
Dharampeth zone, however, has performed well among the 10 zones. It has generated around 24,425 bills (Rs26.87 crore) and recovered Rs23.74 crore.
Though the NMC took several initiatives to improve tax collection, none has yielded the desired result. Given the poor tax recovery, tax consultative committee chairman Sandip Jadhav recently convened a meeting of assistant commissioners of all 10 zones. He pulled up the property tax officials for poor recovery and directed the officials to auction property of tax defaulters. He also asked them to issue show cause notice to tax collectors who fail to meet their target.
At present, barring cement road works, other developmental projects have come to a standstill due to financial crunch. Sources, however said even the ongoing work of cement road works too are going at snail’s pace.
According to sources, as the salaries of the civic staffers are being released regularly, the employees are not facing the pinch.
Sources pointed out that NMC’s revenue will improve only when the civic chief releases the salaries of property tax department staff when they improve tax collection.