As salaries have gone up, there are concerns that money for development will be cut to pay them.
The next budget would include an increase of 15 to 20 per cent. The total for salaries amounts to over 80 per cent. According to the budget, salaries have to be paid first. This leaves only 20 per cent for everything else including development, even though the salary and development components should be 50 per cent each.
The City District Government Karachi (CDGK) was allocated Rs54 billion in the 2010-11 budget.
The total amount spent was Rs53.9 billion with Rs84.4 million of the total left over.
The Karachi Water and Sewerage Board received the majority of the funds, with a total of Rs14.6 billion assigned to them in the budget. Of this, Rs7.8 billion was spent on development and Rs6.7 billion was for current expenditure that includes regular expenses such as utilities and salaries.
Also, Rs17.3 billion was provided to the CDGK for salaries, annual development and departments devolved after the 18th amendment. It was all spent.
The city claims to have spent a considerable sum on some interesting areas in 2010-11, such as Rs30 million on urban search and rescue. They also used Rs 367 million on agriculture and Rs50 million a piece on park security guards, pedestrian bridges and a parking plaza.
The city decided it was more important to spend on schools, having spent the most on education — Rs11 billion. Literacy, however, took a back seat with the least being spent on it - Rs22 million.
Salary, Non-salary and Annual Development Programme (ADP): Rs17.3b
What was spent:
Establishment, contingent, repair and maintenance: Rs9b
Funds to union councils and towns: Rs2.5b
Devolved departments: Rs17.3b
a) Salary and non-salary: Rs13.9b
b) District ADP: Rs4b
Total spent: Rs53.9b
Left over: Rs84m
Published in The Express Tribune, June 10th, 2011.