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Urban Reforms in the Region


As the state is likely to access JNNURM funds for 3 towns – Dehradun, Haridwar and Nainital, the state is required to comply with the reform agenda of JNNURM. The reforms which comprise both mandatory and optional reforms as per GoI are as follows-

  1. MANDATORY REFORMS
    1. AT THE LEVEL OF STATE GOVERNMENT -

      S1- IMPLEMENTATION OF 74TH CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT ACT – 1992 - Implementation of decentralisation measures as envisaged in 74th Constitutional Amendment Act. The State should ensure meaningful association and engagement of ULBs in planning the function of parastatal agencies as well as the delivery of services to the citizens

      S2- INTEGRATION OF CITY PLANNING AND DELIVERY FUNCTIONS - Assigning or associating elected ULBs with “city planning function”. Over a period of seven years, transferring all special agencies that deliver civic services in urban areas to ULBs and creating accountability platforms for all urban civic service providers in transition

      S3- RENT CONTROL REFORMS - Reform of Rent Control Laws balancing the interests of landlords and tenants

      S4- RATIONALIZATION OF STAMP DUTY - Rationalisation of Stamp Duty to bring it down to no more than 5 per cent within next seven years

      S5- REPEAL OF URBAN LAND CEILING AND REGULATION ACT (ULCRA)

      S6- ENACTMENT OF COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION LAW - Enactment of the community Participation Law to institutionalise citizen’s participation and introduce the concept of the Area Sabha in urban areas

      S7- ENACTMENT OF PUBLIC DISCLOSURE LAW - Enactment of the Public Disclosure Law to ensure preparation of medium-term fiscal plan of ULBs and parastatal agencies and release of quarterly performance information to all stakeholders

    2. AT THE LEVEL OF ULB –

      L1 - E- GOVERNANCE - Introduction of a system of e-governance using IT applications, such as GIS and MIS for various services provided by ULBs and parastatal agencies

      L2 – MUNICIPAL ACCOUNTING – Adoption of modern accrual-based double entry system of accounting in ULBs and parastatal agencies.

      L3- PROPERTY TAX - Reform of property tax with GIS. It becomes a major source of revenue for ULBs and arrangements for its effective implementation so that collection efficiency reaches at least 85 per cent within next seven years

      L4- USER CHARGES - Levy of reasonable user charges by ULBs and Parastatals with the objective that the full cost of O&M or recurring cost is collected within the next seven years. However, cities and towns in the North East and other special category States may recover only 50 per cent of O&M charges initially. These cities and towns should graduate to full O&M cost recovery in a phased manner.

      L5- INTERNAL EARMARKING OF FUNDS FOR SERVICE TO URBAN POOR

      L6- PROVISION OF BASIC SERVICES TO URBAN POOR - Provision of basic services to the urban poor including security of tenure at affordable prices, improved housing, water supply and sanitation. Delivery of other existing universal services of the government for education, health and social security is ensured

  2. OPTIONAL REFORMS (BOTH STATE & ULB LEVEL)

    O1 – REVISION OF BYE-LAWS TO STREAMLINE THE APPROVAL PROCESS FOR CONSTRUCTION OF BUILDINGS, DEVELOPMENT OF SITE ETC.

    O2 – SIMPLIFICATION OF LEGAL & PROCEDURAL FREMEWORKS FOR CONVERSION OF LAND FROM AGRICULTURAL TO NON-AGRICULTURAL PURPOSES

    O3 – INTRODUCTION OF PROPERTY TITLE CERTIFICATION SYSTEM IN ULBs

    O4 – EARMARKEING AT LEAST 20-25 PERCENT OF DEVELOPED LAND IN ALL HOUSING PROJECTS (both public and private agencies) FOR EWS & LIG CATEGORY WITH A SYSTEM OF CROSS SUBSIDISATION

    O6 – INTRODUCTION OF COMPUTERIZED PROCESS OF REGISTRATION OF LAND & PROPERTY

    O7 – REVISION OF BYE – LAWS FOR REUSE FOR RECYCLED WATER - bye-laws to make rain-water harvesting mandatory in all buildings and adoption of water conservation measures

    O8 – ADMINISTRATIVE REFORMS - i.e. reduction in establishment costs by adopting Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS), not filling posts falling vacant due to retirement etc., and achieving specified milestones in this regard.

    O9 - STRUCTURAL REFORMS

    O10 - ENCOURAGING PUBLIC PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP


REFORMS UNDER UUSDIP

The support will be provided under ADB, to the State Agencies, ULBs and Utilities in the following interrelated areas –

  • Decentralized Urban Governance: Implement 74th CAA and Mandatory Reforms of JNNURM
  • Gradually move towards Efficient and Sustainable Water & Sewerage Provisions within the decentralization framework in accordance with GoI WSS reform guidelines
  • Urban and Municipal Finance: Introduction and Rationalization of User Charges, Property Tax and Financial Management Reforms
  • Reforms including Private Sector Partnership in Urban Infrastructure and Service Provision

Some of the identified key areas where improvement will be required to improve the functioning and effectiveness of UDD are:
  • The current capacity for policy analysis needs to be fully developed with the benefit of an adequate data-based management system to: (i) provide input required for informed policy planning; and (ii) develop and supervise programmes and projects;
  • The outdated and outmoded management information systems in the Secretariat need modernization and streamlining (action initiated).
  • Lack of effective data analysis and information management skills represents a key constraint to informed decision making. This constraint needs to be removed.
  • Analysis of comparative municipal performance against predetermined benchmarks needs to be undertaken;
  • There is a need for improved information flows between the ULBs and the UDD or other agencies, for better project implementation (work on developing e-governance is underway);
  • The Secretariat needs improved interconnectivity (flow of information) with its key subordinate offices.