Cash-strapped MCD to levy garbage user fees on more commercial properties | Latest Delhi News
The cash-strapped Unified Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) plans to levy a “garbage user fee” on more commercial properties so that its current collection of garbage fees ₹18-19 lakh per month increases to around ₹10 crores a month, officials familiar with the matter said.
A senior official from the Department of Sanitation (Department of Environmental Management Sciences) said the issue had recently been reviewed by the Commissioner and new targets for the collection of user fees had been set. “Currently, the collection of user fees from all domains under the three former companies amounts to approximately ₹18-19 lakh per month and the department was given a target to increase it to ₹110 crore per year or thereabouts ₹10 crore per month. All commercial property users will have to pay these fees, as required by municipal solid waste bylaws, or be prepared to pay hefty fines,” the official said, asking not to be named.
While Delhi’s 2018 solid waste management regulations mandate the levying of a user fee on all residential and commercial properties, the civic body has so far been unable to levy these. royalties on residential properties. “We have decided to continue with the current arrangement of only levying charges on commercial properties – residential properties will not have to pay these charges. Our aim at this stage is to ensure that all commercial establishments be subject to user fees,” the official said.
According to the statutes, the MCD can invoice ₹50-200 per month as residential property garbage usage fee depending on their area. For commercial properties, fees range from ₹100 per month (for street vendors) for ₹500 per month (for shops and dhabas) and goes up to ₹5,000 per month (for wedding halls, exhibitions and fairs).
Private health care units such as clinics, dispensaries and laboratories must pay ₹2,000 per month (for an establishment with less than 50 beds) and ₹4,000 per month (for larger units). Fees for hotels vary from ₹2,000 to 5,000, depending on their star rating, while restaurants have to pay ₹2,000 to 3,000 per month depending on their number of seats. Fines for non-compliance can be up to ₹1 lakh, the official said.
A second official said there were wide variations in the collection of user fees across the 12 MCD areas of Central, South, West, Najafgarh, Rohini, Civil Lines, Karol Bagh, from SP-City, Keshavpuram, Narela, Shahdara North and Shahdara South. “User fee collection is low at Shahdara North, West, Karol Bagh and Rohini, while collection is zero at Narela and Civil Lines. These areas will need to significantly increase the recruitment of business units in their areas,” the official said, asking not to be named.
According to figures available from the MCD, overall user fee collection in June was ₹19,24,609 while in July (till date) it was ₹18,56,902.
The Sanitation Department will also implement a new escrow account and UPI-enabled payment module for payment of user fees. “The parking and market conversion fees are kept in escrow accounts and the money is used for the development of multi-level parking infrastructure. We are also setting up an escrow account so that the fees for using the waste can be used for the improvement of sanitation infrastructure. A private collection agency will be engaged for this purpose,” said the second official.
In addition to being a source of revenue, garbage user fees are also expected to help improve waste management practices in the city. Many provisions of the 2018 regulations, such as source segregation of waste, 100% door-to-door collection of waste and the end-user collection mechanism for non-biodegradable packaging materials, remain on paper only for a partial implementation.