Published on 12:00 AM, August 11, 2021

Barishal city corporation announces budget with focus on infrastructure

Without increasing existing rates or imposing any new tax, Barishal City Corporation has announced a budget of around Tk 416 crore for the year 2021-22.

Mayor Serniabat Sadik Abdullah announced the budget from a virtual session yesterday afternoon.

BCC CEO Syed Faruk Ahmed said around 33 percent of the budget will come from the annual development Programme; 11 percent from government allocations -- bulk and special; while 21 percent will come from government and foreign aid projects. The city corporation plans to raise the other 35 percent on its own.

Among others, the budget has allocated Tk 264.21 crore for developing infrastructure -- including roads, bridges, and other constructions -- Tk 36 crore for waste management, Tk 41 crore for administrative and office management, and Tk 9.79 crore for health services.

Notable among these are the Tk 43 crore plan to construct and renovate city roads, Tk 10 crore to update the waste management system, and constructing children's parks for 30 wards.

Syed Faruk said though Tk 280 crore was allocated through government and foreign aid projects in last year's budget, only Tk 17.91 crore was received, which is six per cent of the total proposal. This made it difficult to complete planned development activities of the city.

He told The Daily Star that though no new taxes have been imposed this time, it is possible to raise enough revenues through a cutting-edge and corruption-free system.

He mentioned that the city corporation raised Tk 77 crore last year and plans to raise Tk 113 crore this year.

"The government is pushing the city corporation to become self-sufficient, and we have successfully completed 17 percent of our development work from our own coffers," Faruk said. "I think we'll be able to do most of our development activities this way in the near future."

Mayor Serniabat said if the city corporation gets enough fund from the government, they can achieve the calendar year's targets.

"We have planned to increase revenue income by maximising tax realisation from a variety of existing sources," he said.