PETALING Jaya City Council (MBPJ) will increase its development expenditure by a whopping 128% for its 2017 budget.
“We have allocated RM139.89mil for next year’s development expenditure, compared to RM61.34mil for this year,” said Petaling Jaya mayor Mohd Azizi Mohd Zain.
Themed “PJ Sejahtera” (Prosperous PJ), the budget is in line with the state government’s plan to reduce the people’s burden by focusing on development that will benefit them.
“Our priority will be on upgrading infrastructure and public facilities (RM48.96mil); upgrading landscape and recreational facilities (RM34.61mil); increasing the quality of city cleaning and health services (RM74.13mil), as well as improving safety and social aspects (RM5.9mil).
“These include upgrading two or three community halls and designated public parks under each state constituency in Petaling Jaya,” he added.
Mohd Azizi said the council had allocated RM16.17mil for maintenance of drainage including flood mitigation measures.
He also said that next year’s budget would have an RM84.4mil deficit, which is higher than the previous year.
“We will tap into the council’s reserves to cover the deficit, and use no more than 50% of the RM200mil in nett reserve we have.
“We are estimating RM395.09mil in terms of revenue, while RM339.6mil has been set aside for management expenditure,” he said, adding that the council would have 20 more contract staff.
However, Mohd Azizi said the assessment rate for 2017 would remain the same as this year.
MBPJ’s 2017 budget was presented and approved at a special meeting yesterday.
On several councillors’ concern of inadequate funds allocated for vital services such as solid waste management and disposal charges, Mohd Azizi said such services were placed under a different classification and assured them that the impact remained the same.
“Our budget can be adjusted based on necessity,” he said.
He also agreed to a request by councillor Derek Fernandez for the council’s 2017 budget to be posted on its website for public viewing.
“It will be done once the state government has approved MBPJ’s budget. It should be up by next month,” added Mohd Azizi.
Fernandez had also suggested, in the meeting, that the councillors be informed on MBPJ projects to enable them to monitor the progress.
He added that MBPJ could increase its non-tax revenue by stepping up its enforcement and legal action to crack down against offenders who repeatedly damage council property, flout traffic rules, and throw rubbish illegally.