Byo crisis under spotlight

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A group of experts representing residents will today hold a meeting to discuss ways of helping the Bulawayo City Council to find alternative ways of generating revenue.

The local authority has in the past been threatening to tighten screws on ratepayers who are failing to pay bills to meet its revenue deficits. Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association (BPRA) coordinator Rodrick Fayayo said the meeting would be held under the theme Alternative funding sources for local authorities: The case of Bulawayo.

The think-tank will bring together experts, including Dr Eric Bloch, council leaders, the Institute of Development Studies under the aegis of the National University of Science and Technology and development scholars from Lupane State University, he said.

It will be held to discuss strategies that local authorities can utilise to raise revenue without overburdening residents, most of whom are either earning salaries below the poverty datum line or unemployed.

Fayayo said BPRA had noted that despite Bulawayo being one of the best-run cities in the country, service delivery provision by the local authority had deteriorated over the past 10 years due to difficulties in raising revenue to finance operations.