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AMC budget: Focus on renewable energy, use of electric vehicles

The budget, tabled in the election year, has proposed no increase in property tax, water and conservancy tax and vehicle tax.

AMC budget, Ahmedabad Municipal Commissioner, Lochan Sehra, draft budgetAjay Bhadoo, a 1999 cadre IAS officer, was appointed deputy Election Commissioner, Election Commission of India, for five years upto 24 July 2024 or until further orders, whichever is earlier. (File)

In a bid to promote use of electric vehicles and renewable energy, Ahmedabad Municipal Commissioner Lochan Sehra in the draft budget for 2022-23 tabled on Wednesday proposed a solar rooftop incentive policy and incentives for use of electric vehicles.

The budget, tabled in the election year, has proposed no increase in property tax, water and conservancy tax and vehicle tax.

With an increase of Rs 636 crore from last year, the commissioner has tabled the draft budget of Rs 8,111 crore.
The draft budget has proposed 300 locations to be identified for electric vehicle charging stations along with a provision for a separate budget for Electric Vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure.

“To create an EV charging infrastructure, AMC will provide land at a token rate of Rs 1 per square metre per month along with exemption from town planning and any other development costs. Also, the land used as charging station will be exempted from property tax for three years,” the commissioner announced during a virtual presentation of his draft budget Wednesday.

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Once installed, these EV charging stations will be GIS mapped and the list will be uploaded on AMC website, app and updated regularly.

For urban mobility, in addition to an existing operational fleet of 200 EV buses operational, another 100 EV AC buses have been proposed.

Further, for last mile connectivity, in addition to existing 60 e-rickshaw on 10 routes, another 600 have been proposed on 100 routes.

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While under the solar rooftop incentive scheme, a 10 per cent rebate in property tax has been proposed to owners of plotted housing schemes from the time of implementation of this scheme from April 1,2022.

“For group housing societies, a competition has been proposed where the society has installed rooftop solar along with rainwater harvesting and segregation of wet and dry waste. In each ward, first winner will be awarded Rs 3 lakh, second Rs 2 and third Rs 1 lakh,” Sehra said.

Further, stressing on ‘Smart City’ project, Sehra said, “Being the last year for Smart Cities Mission, AMC aims to complete ongoing projects as well as proposes new ones.”

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More than doubling the allocation for ‘Smart City’ project, the Ahmedabad Municipal Commissioner in his draft budget has proposed an allocation of Rs 53 crore for the year 2022-23, from Rs 25 crore allocated in the year 2021-22.
Along with ongoing works, new projects including a ‘Youth Town Plaza’ under the ‘Eat Smart’ project have been proposed for the city, under Smart City project.

To be created in the North West zone, this Youth Town Plaza is promised to have smart parking, smart lights with solar panel, smart Variable Message Display (VMD), free wi-fi, CCTV cameras, EV charging station along with hygienic food options where popular food chains and others will be offered AMC land on affordable charges.

Also, creative activity and game zone for children too has been proposed. Ahmedabad also plans to have wind power plant under Smart City project.

To tackle the issue of encroachment on public land including open plots, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation plans to adopt an automated land encroachment monitoring and prevention system using geo fencing at an estimated cost of Rs 16 crore.

This will have a cameras installed pillar inside the plot which will be operational through a mobile SIM card and generate automatic sensor to the control centre and send an alert to the ward estate inspector concerned.

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Under the integrated command and control centre (ICCC), LED Variable Message Display will be installed at 26 out of 126 strategic locations by March 2022.

First published on: 02-02-2022 at 23:09 IST
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