In a strategic move to bolster its financial standing, the Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) is set to lease several open spaces and plots across the city, mirroring a revenue model adopted by the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC). This initiative aims to infuse an annual revenue stream of ₹20-25 crore into the municipality's coffers over a five-year period.
The NMC's financial landscape has reached a critical juncture, prompting innovative measures to boost revenue as existing funds strain under the weight of essential expenditures. With property and water taxes, construction permit fees, and GST refunds constituting the primary income sources, a major chunk is used for employee salaries, pensions, and utility bills.
Expressing concern over the precarious financial state, Municipal Commissioner Ashok Karanjkar highlighted the urgency to explore avenues for augmenting income. Directives from the 15th Finance Commission reinforced the imperative to diversify revenue streams. Consequently, the municipality has initiated multifaceted strategies across departments.
In the initial phase, the NMC plans to install mobile towers at 60 locations within its owned open spaces and dividers, following the blueprint of similar endeavours in Nagpur. Projections estimate an annual revenue boost of ₹5-6 crore from this venture. Simultaneously, the introduction of Pay & Park facilities across 17 designated spots in the city, to be managed by a selected operator through a tender process, is expected to further enhance income.
Expanding on the PMC's blueprint, the NMC intends to lease self-owned vacant plots for five years. This proactive approach aims not only to generate income but also to curb encroachments on these spaces, addressing existing issues of unlawful occupation.
Additionally, the NMC eyes potential revenue from vehicles parking on colony roads and park areas, signaling an imminent imposition of taxes on such vehicle owners. Details regarding this initiative are set to be finalised shortly.
Speaking on the leasing strategy, Pradeep Choudhary, Additional Commissioner of the Municipal Corporation, affirmed the decision to lease vacant plots, emphasising its twofold benefit of revenue generation and safeguarding against encroachments.
The NMC's proactive measures underscore a determined effort to navigate financial challenges while safeguarding valuable public spaces, ensuring a sustainable fiscal future for Nashik's municipal governance.