ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday, January 07, 2007
Vol. 41 - No 32
Kandy Times

Ratepayers at sea over KMC budget

By L.B.Senaratne

The Kandy rate payers had not known that their Budget was passed by the Kandy Municipal Council until they saw the newspapers carry a line or two.

There are two Rate Payers’ Associations but they themselves did not know the requirement in law that the Kandy Municipal Council should make it public that they were presenting their Budget and also allow the ratepayers to send in their proposals, as is required by law.

There was only one in the Council of 23 who voted against the Budget at this meeting. It was only Councillor Anura Gonawela, the JVP member.

Years ago, the Budget was turned down, because the then accountant had made one small clerical error and it had to be presented again. Those days are gone and would never come back.

Mr. Gonawala said he voted against the Budget as it was just a matter of figures, only a ten per cent added to the last year's figures and presented as the new budget.

He said that it was not a Budget, but a collection of figures. He said that he said with responsibility that there was no money in the books of the Council. When former Mayor Kesara Senanayake handed over the Kandy Municipal Council to the present administration, there was Rs. 45 million in the Council coffers, but today the books were empty, he said.

Councillor Gonawela said when the Chief Executive of the Council, who was the Commissioner, ordered the sealing of commercial establishments for non payment of taxes, there was another authority who overruled and reopened the establishments, by which the Chief Executive Officer becomes a nonentity.

“Where is the administration or where does the Executive stand?” he questioned. The Budget is framed in a 275 page booklet with a coloured outer cover ad well-bound, but within lies the crux of the whole matter relating to its income and expenditure.

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Copyright 2007 Wijeya Newspapers Ltd.Colombo. Sri Lanka.