LIVING up to the expectations of its people is a hard for any local council but Shah Alam City Council (MBSA) seems to have done a good job of it.
Each year, the council readies itself with new action plans and goals.
Its mayor Datuk Ahmad Zaharin Mohd Saad hopes to balance development with the preservation of nature.
“Shah Alam has seen a lot since its inception, it has grown from strength to strength in the last 17 years but I hope to achieve more,” he said.
The people, he said, chose to live in this state capital because of various reasons, including smooth traffic, its green ambience, amenities and easy access to major roads and highways.
These qualities have led to rapid expansions including the new townships of Setia Alam, Eco Sanctuary near Kota Kemuning and Elmina along the Guthrie Highway, he added.
The demographics of Shah Alam has changed over the years, with more youngsters settling down here as opposed to the earlier days when mostly retirees and government servants called it home.
This is possibly due to the number of public and private universities that have set up campuses in Sections 7 and 13, and at Glenmarie.
“We need a holistic development that will appeal to everyone as well as realise our vision for Shah Alam to be a low-carbon city by 2030,” said Ahmad Zaharin.
In line with this vision, two major areas to be given focus next year include developing a clean and aesthetically appealing city.
MBSA is looking at several strategies to achieve this, including effective waste management, providing conducive infrastructure and amenities, beautification work, improving communications, community building efforts, and programmes to promote low carbon emission.
At the full board meeting in September, the council set aside RM125.91mil for development expenditure under its 2018 Budget, with an estimated revenue of RM461mil and expenditure of RM484mil. The mayor said the RM22mil budget deficit would be covered using the council’s reserve funds.
“The assessment revenue we collect will be used to improve public facilities for everyone including children. Our only hope is that the people will help us maintain these facilities to ensure sustainability,” he added.
Ahmad Zaharin said MBSA hoped to improve its communication and service for all stakeholders in the city.
He said the council aimed to get everyone involved in the activities and plans for the city to ensure no one was left behind in the development plans and holistic ideas set up for Shah Alam.
“It is my hope that we can work together for Shah Alam that has now become home for more than 600,000 people,” he emphasised.