Deputy Chief Minister Francis D’Souza on Tuesday said that the Goa Municipalities Act will be amended in the forthcoming assembly session to help regulate the functioning of the civic bodies in the state of Goa and to make them financially self dependent.
Addressing the gathering on the occasion of distribution of 43 Tata Ace Hopper Tippers under Goa State Urban Development Agency (GSUDA) to all the municipalities of Goa, at Margao, D’Souza said, “The new councils have completed almost nine months. It is high time for them to perform and work towards becoming self sufficient instead of fully depending on the government for funds. Amendments will be proposed in the Goa Municipalities Act in the forthcoming assembly session.’’ D’Souza, who is also the Urban Development Minister, said that all the councils need to lay stress on collecting arrears, trade and licenses fees to become self sufficient adding, “The amendments will suggest the formation of citizen monitoring committees, which will lay emphasis on development of respective wards and would also oversee it.”
Unhappy with the way the civic bodies are functioning, the minister hinted that the amendment will help regulate the functioning of municipalities in Goa. As per the new law, it will be mandatory for councillors to declare their assets.
Commenting on the garbage issues that haunts most towns and the city, D’Souza said, “The council should focus on scientific disposal of waste. It is the need of the hour. Efforts need to be taken by each of the councils in Goa in this regard. Segregation also plays an important role in disposing off waste.”
“We have received several complaints from the municipalities that people from nearby panchayat areas dump waste in the municipal areas as they very well know that it is regularly cleared. The councils should take up the issue with the panchayat authorities and resolve it,” the minister advised.
Director of Municipal Administration (DMA) Elvis Gomes said that the government has released funds to all the municipalities and that land was also provided to the needy civic bodies to focus on cleanliness. He also said that the councils are given salary grants, besides bins, rickshaws and trucks for effective clearance of the waste. Chairpersons of most municipalities were present at the function.