Tariff debacle halts Joburg’s budget progress

The City of Johannesburg has potentially locked itself in a tight spot after its 2018/19 budget was approved, but not the tariffs that will partly fund said budget.

ALSO READ: 15 things you need to know about Joburg’s budget

The rejection of tariff increases by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) on 29 May has left the council in a tricky situation. This is because the operational and capital expenditure budgets were approved in a report, but the tariffs that were tabled in a separate report were not.

The African National Congress (ANC) also opposed the entire budget, its chief whip Solly Mogase said. “We didn’t vote for the budget because the tariff increases are a problem.” According to him, residents were not consulted.

Responding to the councillors’ concerns, Finance MMC Funzela Ngobeni, said the increases were made as a direct result of increases from Rand Water and the National Energy Regulator (Nersa).

The EFF’s Silumko Mabona said the Democratic Alliance (DA) ‘will have to see how they can work around the tariff increases’. He said negotiations need to happen, but that the EFF completely opposed tariff increases for basic services.

The mayor’s office’s Tanya Hydenrych said this is a council-related matter and it will be resolved in the coming days.

Source: CityBuzz.co.za

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