Corpn. may reduce property tax

V3 News image

With the commencement of pre-poll preparations for the Corporation Council elections, residents’ associations have intensified their campaign for a reduction in property tax and rationalisation of rates.
The Corporation has constituted a committee to explore ways to reduce property tax rates in a few added areas that have reported anomalies in the rates. “We may reduce property tax rates in some added areas. Residents in a few added areas have been campaigning for tax rates similar to that of the core city,” said an official.
Owners of old houses may also get relief in property tax because of the plan to factor in the depreciation of the asset in property tax calculations.
As many as 1.59 lakh residents and traders who own property in the city were reportedly found to be paying tax exceeding 100% in the case of commercial buildings and 50% in the case of residential structures. Municipal Administration Minister S.P.Velumani had already announced in the Assembly in July that the property tax will be reduced for such residents who were paying more than 50% prescribed in the order.
Owing to protests by a section of residents, the Revenue Department officials of the Corporation have been asked to take initiatives to redress the grievances of residents who have reported anamolies. The government has also advised civic officials to avoid harrassment of residents who demand action on such civic issues. The Corporation collected property tax of around Rs.1,000 crore last year and is expected to collect more than Rs.1,400 crore this year from 12.19 lakh assessees. S. Swaminathan, secretary, JAMBA United Welfare Association in Ambattur zone, said many residents in areas such as Ambattur were paying very high property tax when compared to other areas. “Many residents who are paying EMI for loans are affected because of the increase in tax. In old city limits such as Anna Nagar, a 1,000 sq ft home has a property tax of Rs.1,350. But a flat of the same size in Ambattur is assessed for a tax of Rs.4,350. Residents have been demanding a reduction,” he said.
T. Nagar residents' welfare association members on Monday met with officials as part of their campaign for tax collection based on the government order. The association founding member V.S.Jayaraman said: “The residents have complained that the Corporation, besides the general revision in the property tax for the period 2018-19, had hiked the tax for the period 2017-18.”