Sonko engages reverse gear, raises parking fees to Sh400

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Backtracking on his campaign pledges, Nairobi governor Mike Sonko is set to increase parking fees in the city centre.

If a proposal by Sonko’s administration to hike the fees is approved by the county assembly, the fees will take effect next month.

The county Treasury, in the county’s 2018-19 Finance Bill, has proposed to increase the fees from Sh300 to Sh400 to finance its Sh34 billion 2018-19 budget.

During campaigns last year, Sonko promised to reduce the fees to Sh140. The fee was increased to Sh300 from Sh140 by former governor Evans Kidero in 2013.

The Bill is before the Budget and Appropriations Committee.

The House has until November 27 to approve the Bill. It can either make changes to the proposed law or pass it without any amendments.

Drivers of canters will pay Sh2,000 to park or offload goods from their vehicles in the CBD, while trucks will be charged Sh6,000. Big lorries will pay Sh4,000 for parking in the city centre.

Boda bodas and Tuk tuks will pay Sh1,000 and Sh1,500 monthly for seasonal parking tickets respectively. PSV owners will pay Sh250, 000 annually per vehicle.

But Budget and Appropriations Committee chairman Robert Mbatia said his panel will revise the proposal, adding that they won’t allow residents to be overtaxed.

“As a committee, our first role is to represent members of the public. We understand Nairobi residents also need quality services but we have to balance to ensure they are not overtaxed,” Mbatia said.

The county also seeks to introduce a new levy on garbage collection.

Slum dwellers will pay Sh100 per month for garbage collection. Residents living in middle-class estates such as BuruBuru, Donholm, and Fedha will part with Sh300, if the proposed changes are adopted.

Those living in high-end estates such as Karen, Kileleshwa, Runda and Lavingtone will pay Sh500.

Learning institutions have not been spared either. Day primary, nursery and day care with over 850 students will be required to pay Sh30,000 per month for garbage collection.

Boarding primary, secondary, universities and colleges with students above 2,000 will pay Sh65,000 every month.

Embakasi MCA Michael Ogada said the county government should optimise the already existing streams to raise revenue.

“You cannot bridge the deficit by overtaxing poor Kenyans, first of all you should tell us if the taxes we allowed you to collect you collected them optimally,” Ogada said.

On the proposed garbage levy, Ogada said it is the county’s obligation to collect trash and that they shouldn’t overburden residents by paying for the service.

SOURCE: the-star.co.ke

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