Public hearings to be held on draft budget

DURBAN’S draft budget for the 2017/18 financial year was tabled by the eThekwini mayor, Zandile Gumede, on Thursday. Public hearings will be held by officials, the details of which are yet to be published.

“The City’s consolidated R45 billion draft budget for the 2017/18 financial year is informed by the Municipality’s long-term financial strategy with emphasis on affordability and long-term sustainability focused on alleviating poverty and social imbalances through job creation, youth development and advancing the economy by creating an enabling platform for business to flourish,” said Mayor Gumede.

This year’s draft budget is composed of a capital budget of R7,5 billion and an operational budget of R37,5 billion. The proposed tariff increases are 6.9 per cent on rates, 1.88 per cent for electricity, 15 per cent for domestic water consumers, 17 per cent for business water consumers, 9.9 per cent for refuse removal, and also 9.9 per cent for sanitation.

The City said that as part of its free basic services package, pensioners, child-headed households, disability grantees and the medically boarded will be exempt from paying rates on the first R460 000 of their property value.

Residential Properties valued up to R230,000 (previously R185,000) will be exempt from paying rates. All other properties valued above R230,000, for the first R120,000 of value no rates will be charged.

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