GHAZIABAD: The Ghaziabad Nagar Nigam (GNN) has come up with an innovative plan to encourage people to pay their house tax on time - it is mulling to provide free parking in the city for a year to residents who pay property tax.
For instance, if the free parking is implemented in May this year, then those who pay their house tax for the current financial year (2014-15) would be eligible to avail free parking. And, to avail of the scheme, one would have to produce the property tax receipt, along with his driving licence to the parking attendant.
Officials hoped the free parking scheme would be incentive enough for city residents to pay property tax, and it would also help increase its revenue. The authority is currently finalizing the guidelines for the parking policy.
GNN commissioner RK Singh told TOI that there are 2.60 lakh registered property owners in the city and the civic body can collect Rs 70 crore in tax revenue if everybody pays up, but said that "last year only 70% of the house owners paid the tax". "With the free parking incentive, we hope that at least 20% of the tax defaulters would pay next time," he said.
Calling it a win-win situation for both residents and the authority, Singh said that the increased tax revenue in house tax would outweigh the loss of revenue from parking receipts. "In the financial year 2013-14, we collected Rs 1.35 crore from 54 designated parking lots in the city. If we succeed in encouraging all 30% tax defaulters to pay up, the amount that will fall in GNN's kitty will be much more than what we will lose from the free parking incentive," he said. Singh added, "To avail of the free parking facility, one would have to produce the receipt of the house/property tax along with his driving licence. But make sure that the address on both the receipt and the licence matches."
The proposal would be tabled at the GNN meeting to be held in the first week of March and if it gets the board's green signal, it would be implemented in the next financial year. Residents have welcomed the move. Colonel T P Tyagi, the chairman of the Ghaziabad RWA federation, said, "At the face of it, the proposal looks good but I only hope that the GNN doesn't use the proposal to hike property/house tax."