Colombo MC to auction assets

Published : 10:15 am  February 26, 2015 | No comments so far |  |  (967) reads | 


By Nabeela Hussain

In an attempt to collect Rs. 900 million in defaulted payment of municipal rates, the Colombo Municipality yesterday said it had sent seven-day notices to 1,400 property owners who had defaulted in payments amounting to over Rs. 100,000.
Municipality Treasurer K. D Chitrapala said that after the notice was sent several residents had paid their rates.  “If the rates are not paid even after this we will gazette the properties, publish it in the newspapers and  auction them off,” he said. Rate payers can retain their properties by paying up their arrears anytime during the process, the treasurer said. “After the advertisements were published in the papers, we have collected Rs. 150 million of what was due,” Chitrapala said.

The municipality conducted a similar programme last year in a bid to collect rates that were long overdue. “We collected some Rs. 300 million last year when the same procedure was followed. We auctioned several properties,” he said.


Chitrapala said residents had 365 days after the auction to pay the municipality the defaulted rates including a 10 per cent charge for the auction. “The programme was held in February last year and a year has passed since then. We are in the process of obtaining the purchase documents of these properties now. I have sent letters to the owners of all of these properties; some have responded but most haven’t,” he said.

“Once information on the properties are collected the purchase certificates will be issued  after which owners cannot get their properties back,
Most of these unpaid rates have been carried forward as unpaid rates in the past. People don’t want to pay them but they are willing to pay the new charges,” Chitrapala said.

Residents had 365 days after the auction to pay the  municipality the defaulted rates including a 10 per cent charge for the  auction