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  Metros   Kolkata  08 Dec 2016  Bill on New Town property tax gets Assembly clearance

Bill on New Town property tax gets Assembly clearance

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : Dec 8, 2016, 4:28 am IST
Updated : Dec 8, 2016, 4:53 am IST

Siliguri MLA Asok Bhattacharya, however, opposed the bill, claiming that it was poorly drafted.

Firhad Hakim
 Firhad Hakim

Kolkata: The West Bengal Assembly Wednesday passed the New Town Kolkata Development Authority (Amendment) Bill. Urban development minister Firhad Hakim told reporters that the amendment was aimed at introducing a unit area tax system — known as Unit Area Assessment (UAA) — to collect property and water taxes from consumers in New Town.

The amendment sought to ensure sustainability and maintenance of civic services to the residents of New Town, Kolkata, by vesting regulatory powers for imposition of property tax in line with the other urban local bodies, the minister said.

According to the provisions of the bill, a flat tax rate, independent of the ‘annual valuation’ of the property, would be used under the new system. The tax rate is expected to be significantly lower (6 per cent - 20 per cent) than the property tax rates of the current system (11 per cent - 40 per cent).

Property owners can avail of a rebate of 5 per cent allowed on quarterly tax. An additional rebate of 5 per cent will be provided for each of the remaining three quarters if tax for all four quarters are paid in advance within the rebate period of the first quarter.

During the discussion in the Assembly, Trinamul’s Bidhanagar MLA Sujit Bose said a seven-member municipal valuation committee comprising experts from various disciplines and headed by the development authority’s member secretary would assess the tax of each establishment.

“IT firms won’t come under the fold of the property tax to encourage IT businesses, and there will be provisions for the poor,” Mr Bose added. CPI(M)’s Siliguri MLA Asok Bhattacharya, however, opposed the bill, claiming that it was poorly drafted.

“The bill does not match the provisions of the Constitution. It will create legal hassles in the future. The bill should be sent to the Assembly’s select committee for debate and review,” he said.

Mr Hakim assured the Opposition that the bill won’t face any legal challenge and would help New Town to become a city.

Tags: constitution, new town kolkata development authority, firhad hakim
Location: India, West Bengal, Calcutta [Kolkata]