In anticipation of the model code of conduct, preceding the Lok Sabha, that is expected to kick in next week, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has passed its budget of Rs 30,692 crore for 2019-20 on Saturday.
This time corporators did not hold lengthy discussions before clearing the budget, fearing that the discussion will push budget clearing into election code of conduct and cause delay in development projects.
Only group leaders of all parties held discussions and later it was passed with Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta’s speech. Mehta said, “For implementation of the seventh pay commission, the civic body will have to spend Rs 1,500 crore. Since there are many projects, we will have to dip in reserves. Infrastructure projects are linked to Rs 52,000 crore reserves available with the corporation. Focus will be more on creating open spaces, improve health facility, education and storm water drains of the city.”
Highlighting some of the projects that are in the pipeline, he said: “We are planning to build a central library, which will have books of all languages.
The BMC will spend Rs 250 crore on construction of new sewer lines. Fire compliance cell, footpath policy to better pedestrian commute will be also implemented”.
The BMC will allow free parking in multi-storey public parking lots (PPL) in the city until it finds contractors to run them. “There are many PPL’s lying unused after developers have handed them over to BMC. It will be kept open for free parking,” said Mehta. There are 23 PPL’s across the city that can accommodate over 2,000 vehicles.