BY NIZBERT MOYO
THE Bulawayo City Council yesterday announced a $23 billion 2022 budget, down from the initially proposed $24 billion budget, while rate increases have been revised downwards to 200% from 216%.
Council’s finance and development committee chairperson councillor Tawanda Ruzive presented the budget statement in council chambers.
“Your worship in view of the foregoing, I propose that the total budget for 2022 be pegged at $23 863 515 157 broken down as follows, revenue budget $15 957 224 900 and capital budget $7 906 290 257.
“The 2022 Budget proposes to increase tariffs by varying percentages as opposed to a blanket increase as was done in the past.
“The 2022 budget increases in tariffs have been reduced to an average of 200%,” Ruzive said.
He said charges such as admission fees to stadia and swimming pools, hire of council facilities, patient fees for use of an ambulance, cession fees and similar charges will also go up by 450%.
He said shop, liquor and garage licenses, while trading permits, route approval, development permits and inspection fees will also go up by 450%.
Rent for council properties will also go up by 250%, while pit sand and precast products will be increased by 626%.
“Your worship, council is mandated to deliver quality services to the residents, quality service comes at a cost, and our tariffs are now sub-economic.
“The cost of providing the services continues to go up.
“The plight of residents cannot be ignored and hence there is need to balance the level of service delivery and tariff affordability,’’ he said.