BY SILAS NKALA
THE Bulawayo City Council lost $29 million revenue due to charging old fees on shop licences.
The council also overshot its 2021 budget by $71,5 million on town planning, environment management, fire and ambulance and water provision services.
However, the council underspent on health and education by $324 million.
BCC financial director Kempton Ndimande disclosed this on Wednesday while presenting a 2021 budget review and 2022 budget projections.
Council has proposed a $24,7 billion budget for 2022, which will raise tariffs by 216%.
Ndimande said in 2021, council had budgeted $12,5 million for town planning services for six months, but the work gobbled $19,2 million, an amount far above the stipulated budget.
“Council lost $29 million in the shop licensing department due to charging old fees, and this also applies to the charges at cemeteries. This calls for adjustments,” Ndimande said.
He said some of the planning activities that demanded funding were done in Norwood, Umvimila, Highmount, Killarney East, Reigate Medium, Emganwini Extension and Hyde Park Phase 1, among others.
“Environmental management was allocated a budget of $59,3 million and the expenditure was $73,9 million,” Ndimande said.
He said the funds were channelled towards the provision of a safe and aesthetic environment in the city, which included 60% grass cutting and bush clearing along roads, auxiliary grounds and open spaces.
On fire and ambulances, Ndimande said the budget allocation was $87,9 million, but the council used $110,1 million.
“Water provision was allocated $471,5 million, but we spent $623,8 million,” he said.
Ndimande, however, said in some sectors of service provision, council underspent, for example, on roads where $144,2 million was allocated, but $121,6 million was used.
On housing, he said $9,3 million was spent when only $4,2 million was allocated.
He said he over 3 000 residential stands were allocated, with 51 stands allocated to individuals and 3 920 to developers.
Ndimande said out of the $44,7 million allocated to the education sector, $38,2 million was expended through servicing of schools, construction of classroom blocks, purchasing of furniture, and connecting schools to the internet.
A total of $331 million was spent on health services from an allocation of $654,8 million, meaning, on health and education, the local authority underspent by $324 million.