Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) that has recommended a 100 per cent increase in pro rata charges for apartments and commercial complexes is expecting an increase in its revenue by over Rs. 80 crore annually through the revised pro rata charges.
The board, which is awaiting the State government’s clearance to implement the new charges from December 1, is presently earning over Rs. 100 crore through these charges.
Introduced in 1986, pro rata charges are one-time service charges collected by the BWSSB for providing new drinking water and sanitary connections to buildings. The last revision of these charges was done in 2008.
BWSSB Chairperson T.M. Vijay Bhaskar told The Hindu that the proposal was to increase the pro rata charges from Rs. 150 per square metre to Rs. 250.50 for individual residential buildings and double the existing charges of Rs. 200 and Rs. 300 for apartments and commercial complexes respectively.
“As the charges had not been revised for the last seven years, the board has recommended the revision and sent a proposal to the government. The file is with the Law Department now and we are hoping it will be approved soon. The increased revenue will help us in taking up new projects,” he said.
Explaining that the pro rata charges are applicable for buildings with third floor and above, the BWSSB chief said all those property owners who added more floors to the existing building (third floor and above) after 1986 and had not paid the charges would also be brought under the net.
BWSSB Engineer-in-Chief S. Krishnappa explained that the infrastructure (water and sanitary lines) was usually planned for ground and first floor. “But when people construct a third floor and above that, we have to alter the pipelines to provide services for these additional floors. That involves cost and the pro rata charges are for the additional infrastructure,” he said.
Although the board has not done a survey to identify buildings whose owners had not paid pro rata charges, meter readers and water inspectors would be entrusted with the task of finding out buildings that had been extended or were under extension, he added.
Existing pro rata charges
Residential buildings: Rs. 150 per sq. m on total built-up area
Multi-storey residential apartments: Rs. 200 per sq. m on total built-up area
Commercial buildings – Rs. 300 per sq. m on total built-up area
Proposed new charges
For residential buildings: An upward revision by 67 per cent
For apartments and commercial buildings: 100 per cent
What are pro rata charges?
Pro rata charges are one-time service charges collected by the BWSSB for providing new drinking water and sanitary connections to buildings.
If a house has only one kitchen, the charges are only calculated for one floor. If the building has more than one kitchen, the floor area of the entire building is taken into account. The charges are applicable for buildings with third floor and above.