Making an increase of around 50 per cent in capital expenditure from that proposed by the civic administration, corporators in the civic standing committee on Tuesday announced various ambitious projects of improving health facilities for citizens, new infrastructure to provide clean environment through plants for garbage disposal and air pollution in the budget estimate for 2014-15.
PMC, which is struggling to implement the budget for 2013-14 due to reduction in revenue collection for the year, was cautious in making the budget estimate for 2014-15. The budget estimate of Rs 4,150.02 crore for 2014-15 — which is less than Rs 17.48 crore of the budget for 2013-14 — was tabled in the general body meeting.
The civic administration had submitted to the standing committee a draft budget of Rs 3,602.02 crore for 2014-15 without proposing any tax hike while appealing to the corporators to be practical in finalising the budget. The standing committee increased it by Rs 548 crore while announcing various projects to be taken up in the next financial year.
The corporators increased the allocation for capital expenditure by around 50 per cent, from Rs 1,459.17 crore to Rs 2,142.85 crore.
They also reduced the non-planned expenditure to increase allocation for development works.
“Our focus was to make available more funds for providing services to citizens and reduce the expenditure on administration. The improvement in health sector for the poor and public transport is the need of the hour,” said standing committee chairman Vishal Tambe in his budget presentation.
For making available medicines at cheaper rate, the PMC would start awareness on generic medicine among citizens and set up stores at Kamla Nehru Hospital and Rajiv Gandhi Hospital on pilot basis. The civic body would also start the generic medicine stores at Hadapsar, Kothrud, Padmavati-Dhankawadi, Kharadi and Bopodi for which budgetary provision of Rs 2 crore has been proposed.
The services at civic hospitals are suffering due to lack of trained manpower, and as a permanent solution the PMC would be starting a nursing college at Kamla Nehru Hospital that would enable 200 more hands each year to assist the existing staff at civic hospitals. Similarly, to cater to the shortage of doctors in civic hospitals, the PMC has decided to join hands with B J Medical College to start a post graduate centre in civic hospital. “This would help the PMC in setting up its own medical college in the future,” Tambe said, adding that the ICU centre at Kamla Nehru Hospital would be made operational with experts from KEM Hospital.
For the girl students of civic schools, the PMC would be providing sanitary napkins. To address the woes of issuing birth and death certificates, the facility would be made online.
The standing committee also made budgetary provisions to resolve the issue of garbage disposal by proposing decentralisation of waste processing plant at four places in the city. It has made provision of Rs 5.2 crore for setting up a biogas plant and planned for installing sanitary napkin disposable machine at all ward office jurisdiction. PMC has proposed to buy four truck-mounted road sweepers to clean roads.