The government has acted smart by ending the discretion of the ground staff in assessing property tax which will be implemented in Ludhiana soon. The residents will be supposed to assess their property themselves after the property tax comes into force.
There were several reports that the ground staff was involved in misappropriations in assessing house tax. However, residents assessing their properties will have to take an oath wherein if found incorrect, they will invite penalty.
All properties will be scanned through satellite and no property, vacant or constructed, will be left out of the ambit of property tax which is likely to give a boost to the financial condition of the MC.
The present nomenclature "house tax" will be changed to "property tax" with several new changes in the system that has already been adopted by most of the metro cities of the country.
Zonal commissioner of zone B PS Ghuman said there would be eight zones in which all properties of the city would be distributed. "These zones would be assessed on the basis of civic amenities, location of property and market value of the area," Ghuman added.
The property tax will be charged on the basis of unit area value that will be fixed by the deputy commissioner of Ludhiana. Each of the eight zones will have a different unit area value on which the property tax will be determined.
On the other hand, the total unit area value of the land and the building for the purpose of levy of tax will be calculated in accordance with five factors. They are usage of land, type of land, structural factor, occupancy factor and age of the building.
All these factors would be considered before finalising the property tax of the particular unit of land or building.
"The annual unit value in case of residential building will be 5%, 20% in case of malls and five-star hotels and 15% in case of other buildings or plots," Ghuman said.
Property tax on the building will be paid firstly at the rate of 1% of the annual unit value multiplied by the built-up area of the building in cases where the built up area is 25% or more of the total area of the land. Secondly, at the rate of .25% of the annual unit value multiplied by the area of the land in cases where the land is vacant and thirdly, at the rate of 1% of the annual unit value multiplied by the built-up area of the land and at the rate of .25 percent of the annual unit value multiplied by the remaining area of the land in cases where built up area is less than the total area of land.
Ghuman said small properties of 0-50 square metre would be charged Rs. 50 per year. "Those with the area of 51 to 100 sq m will be charged Rs. 150 per annum," he said.
A unique identity number will be given to each property by the municipal corporation so that the income tax returns could be made online. A private firm will start a field survey of each property of the city which will be completed within 60 days. Residents will be asked to fill a performa and give it to the surveyor.
No tax shall be payable on building and lands if these are exclusively used for religious purposes, cremation grounds, cemetery, cow-shelter, stray animals care centre, historical and heritage buildings notified by the state and central governments
Residents will be supposed to file property tax return from April 1 to June 31 with 10% rebate on the total amount. From July 1 to September 30 without rebate and after September 30 with a penalty of 25% plus interest
MC has taken satellite images of properties with a resolution of .5 metre
After the imposition of property tax, the field staff can be diverted to other works, as residents will themselves assess their property and not the MC officials
At present, the MC is assessing 4 lakh properties, excluding open plots on which there is no construction