Financial crisis: Service charges to go up
Thiruvananthapuram: With an aim to challenge the financial crisis in the state, the government has been planning to raise the service charges, land tax and property tax.
Following this, a meeting of departmental heads was summoned to decide on income sources. It is reported that the meeting has decided to seek suggestions from various departments for the same.
A committee led by finance principal secretary Manoj Joshi carried out the primary discussions. Meanwhile, the local self-government department suggested to raise the property tax at a meeting. It is reported that the department is likely to recommend hike in land tax.
The committee assumed that apart from hike in taxes it is necessary to raise the fees and service charges in hospitals and colleges to counter the financial crisis.
For this purpose, the committee asked the Higher Education Department to submit the suggestions to hike college fees at the next meeting. The committee will submit the recommendations to the government within two weeks. The cabinet will decide on which recommendations to be implemented.
Control over treasury to continue
However, the sources revealed that the government will continue the regulation on the treasury for an indefinite time. Distribution of salary and pension resumed from Monday. The government need Rs 2,500 crore for salary and Rs 1,860 crore for pension.
As the government is struggling in financial crisis, pension and salary are distributed after reserving the income. The government was forced to take the loan called Ways and Means Advances (WMA) from RBI to distribute the pension and salary. At present, only bills ranging to Rs 5 lakh in the approved list of government will be taken for transactions at the treasury.
Centre to pay Rs 3,000 crore as arrears
As the state government failed to earn expected income from GST, the centre’s compensation rose by Rs 3,000 crore. An arrear of Rs 1,600 crore marked in the month of August and September not paid yet.
Demanding to clear the arrears, finance Minister Dr Thomas Issac and finance ministers from other states will meet union minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday.