City of Cape Town writes off R300 million debt owed by residents

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The City of Cape Town has written off debt of about R300 million in rates owed by residents.

This was revealed during Mayor Dan Plato’s budget speech tabled in the council.

Plato says they will continue to assist residents affected by COVID-19.

He says, “As the impacts of the global COVID-19 pandemic continue to be felt by all, we have taken measures to provide relief to struggling residents. As of 30 April 2021, we have written off outstanding debts of residents to the value of R295 million, with a proposal on tomorrow’s (Thursday) council agenda to write off a further R4 billion in outstanding debt from residents from previous years.”

“We are also allocating R3.35 billion for rates relief for the 2021/22 financial year. This consists of R1.99 billion for indigent relief and R1.35 billion in rates rebates. This is in addition to the dedicated COVID-19 relief budget, primarily of R313 million on the Operating Budget,” Plato adds.

“Knowing the economic fallout from this crisis and how it has impacted on the income levels of businesses and residents, we have placed significant emphasis on ensuring that this budget does not impose further economic hardship. As such we have ensured that, through extensive expenditure cuts, the rates and tariff increases have been kept to an absolute minimum. Rates increases are as follows: 4.5% average increase for rates, 5% increase for water and sanitation and 3.5% for refuse removal. The electricity tariff will be increased by 13.48%, with residents being spared the full increase of 15.06% imposed by Eskom.”

Below is the full speech by the executive mayor, Dan Plato: