Property tax due: Chandigarh MC sends notices to 30,000 defaulters

With a week to go until the end of the fiscal year, the Municipality of Chandigarh has launched a crackdown on property tax defaulters in the city.

No less than 30,000 notices were issued to offenders, who had two weeks to settle their dues.

Around 17,000 residential property owners mainly make up the list of defaulters, while 13,000 commercial property owners are yet to pay their dues.

In the event that the property tax is not paid on time, MC will impose a penalty, while in the event of multiple defaults despite repeated notices, the civic body has the power to confiscate the property and recover the rights of its sale, as provided for by Punjab. Municipal Corporation Act, 1976, extended to Chandigarh.

Up to 1.16 lakh of landowners are liable to pay property tax in the city. Among them are 85,000 clean residential units and 30,000 commercial buildings.

Owners of structures under 500 square feet are exempt. In addition, no tax is levied on residential properties up to 300 square meters owned by serving military and ex-defence personnel, widows and persons with disabilities.

Fund-strapped Chandigarh MC relies heavily on property tax for its revenue. In accordance with its budget forecasts for 2021-2022, 40 crore was expected from property tax and another 15 crores in arrears, penalties and interest from previous years.

“About 30,000 residents have still not paid tax this year, so we have issued payment notices to them within two weeks. We are also sending reminders to beneficiaries, who still owe MC arrears for past years. said Rupesh Kumar, Additional Commissioner, MC.

With a large number of residents clearing their arrears, MC collections reached 64 crore so far. This includes 44 crore commercial properties and 20 crore of residential buildings.

“Recoveries include dues for the current year, as well as arrears and penalties from previous years. These should increase to 75 crores as more residents settle their dues before the end of the current financial year,” Kumar said.

On improving his property tax collections, Kumar said, “The whole process has been computerized. Arrears are also added to invoices and regular notices are sent to beneficiaries. We have also become rigorous in the treatment of defaulters. All of this has spurred the increase in compliance.

The Punjab Municipal Corporation Act 1976 empowers MC to recover property tax by seizure and sale of the defaulter’s movable property; seizure and sale of the property; seizure of rents due for the property; or by costume.

Recently, MC had also served eviction notices on Panjab University for non-payment of property tax dues which accrued to more than 21 crores. He had previously issued notices to UT’s administration, through its engineering department, for failure to pay tax value 45 crore. The administration has started paying dues and is expected to pay in full by the end of this month.

New billing cycle from April 1

MC will also begin issuing property tax notifications for the 2022-23 fiscal year beginning April 1. Arrears from the previous year will be added to new invoices.

In the new billing cycle, residential owners will get a 20% refund and commercial owners 10% if payment is made by May 31. Thereafter, there will be a 25% penalty, with 12% interest on the tax due. .

MC also plans to expand its taxpayer base. “We will add 18,000 new land taxpayers in the new fiscal year. They were located in various settlements in the city through a survey conducted in February this year,” Kumar said.

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