Rajesh B. Nair
|Website will be launched next week, says official|
Oulgaret, Pondicherry Municipalities’ details to be available initially
Plans afoot to facilitate online collection of property tax
PUDUCHERRY: The Local Administration Department is all set to launch an exclusive website to provide information on property tax collection. “It is a follow up measure after we decided to give the option to property owners to assess the value of their buildings to determine the tax to be paid. The web site will be launched next week,” director of Local Administration E. Vallavan told The Hindu.
The department also planned to provide online facility for payment of property tax after the launch, he said.
The website would provide information such as the guidelines to be followed in assessing the value of the property, assessee details, arrears due, annual rental value, street classification and exemption list, he said. Initially, details pertaining to property tax collection in Oulgaret and Pondicherry Municipalities would be provided. Details regarding other municipalities would also be included in the future.
The website would also help the department director and Commissioners and Revenue officers in the municipalities to monitor the progress of tax collection on a daily basis, Mr. Vallavan said. “The web site is linked to Management Information System and we can monitor the tax collection by logging on to it. All the officers concerned have been provided separate passwords to access information related to tax collection,” he said.
In the year 2000, the territorial administration framed The Pondicherry Municipalities (Assessment of Annual Rental Value of Buildings/Houses) Rules 2000 on the model adopted by the Patna Municipal Corporation to have a uniform and scientific approach for property tax collection. As per the rule, owners of the buildings were given the option to assess the tax based on location, construction and usage of the building, he said.
The assessment process was completed two years ago, Mr. Vallavan said, adding that the introduction of the new method and decision to tie-up with banks for collecting tax had made the process of tax collection smooth. During 2007-08, the Pondicherry Municipality collected Rs. 4.37 crore as property tax and the Oulgaret Municipality Rs 1.9 crore.
The Local Administration Department expected to maintain the momentum in the collection of property tax in the current financial year, he said, adding that it could even cross the previous years’ figure.
During a special drive conducted on property tax collection this March, the Pondicherry Municipality collected Rs. 60 lakh and Oulgaret Rs. 37 lakh, Mr. Vallavan said.
In April and May, the Pondicherry Municipality collected Rs 81.88 lakh as property tax.
He also said that the Finance Commission, constituted by the government to study the financial condition of the civic bodies, had submitted its first report. It is expected to submit the second report next month.
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