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Photo: Daniel Mennerich/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

MCGM’s Budget 2018-19: Matching finances and functions post GST

Talk by Ajoy Mehta

Sri Ajoy Mehta (IAS) is the Municipal Commissioner of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) for the past three years. Prior to this, Mehta headed MAHAGENCO and MAHADISCOM, the state’s power distribution and generation companies as Managing Director where he successfully tackled the issue of power shortage. He is known for his competency and experience in issues of governance, policymaking, technology, management and institution building.

Sri Mehta presented the ₹27,258 crore MCGM budget, for the 2018-19 fiscal on 2 February 2018.

This was the first post-GST MCGM budget that had to contend with the abolition of octroi, which was hereto MCGM’s largest and most robust revenue source. While the Government of Maharashtra has assured that the loss of octroi shall be compensated by the state, the MCGM must strategise anew to deal with a situation that over time may put some degree of strain on the civic coffers and require a larger local effort to maintain and improve the level of services in the city.

Sri Mehta’s budget emphasises the effort to reduce revenue expenditure, provide renewed thrust to capital works and take up huge strategic projects like Coastal Road and Goregaon-Mulund Link Road. One of his pioneering reforms has been to integrate the Development Plan (DP) and the Budget for the first time in the country. An area of great significance is IT-enabling all municipal services. Of equal importance are efforts to decentralise waste segregation and processing facilities, proposed establishment of the MCGM Centre for Municipal Capacity Building & Research (MCMCR) and the introduction of biometric attendance. Shri Mehta’s presentation would throw further light on these and other aspects of the municipal budget.

Conference Hall, ORF Mumbai