MIRI, Dec 22 (Bernama) – The Miri City Council (MCC) plans to start charging fees on facilities that were previously offered for free to the public and to enter into commercial ventures, as part of efforts to achieve its forecast revenue of about RM47.77 million next year.
Miri Mayor Datuk Wee Han Wen said these facilities, among others, would be for the usage of the MCC field and mobile toilets for any functions and activities.
Addressing the MCC’s full council meeting here today, he said these moves were planned in anticipation of the government’s policy requiring all local councils to be financially self-reliant and less dependent on government grant.
“In an effort to reduce expenditure, the council would look into the possibility of adopting different approach in providing its services,” he said, adding that their anticipated expenditure for 2007 would be RM46.93 million.
He said pre-emptive measures would also be taken to safeguard their properties and facilities against vandalism and theft, besides employing stricter control over the recurrent expenditure.
Wee said they would initiate a wide-scale public campaign from the beginning of next year to explain MCC’s reasons to broaden their financial revenue.
As of Dec 21 this year, MCC had collected RM46.57 million into its coffers against the expenditure of RM46.77 million with the collection of assessment rates being the biggest revenue contributor at RM27.10 million.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Wee said the council estimated to collect RM30 million in assessment rates next year following the expected increase in properties in the city next year from the current record of 40,366 and some 5,500 of these properties would have their rates revised.
“Revisions on the rates had to be imposed as the owners involved had made extensions and renovations on their properties,” he added.