The Gauteng Provincial Government has been allocated an additional R443million taking the initial budget up to R139.9billion for the 2019/20 financial year.

Presenting the Adjustment Budget and Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement to the Legislature on Tuesday, 26 November 2019, MEC Nkomo-Ralehoko painted a bleak picture stating that public finances were experiencing serious pressures.

“Despite the significant contribution to the country’s output, Gauteng’s economy is growing far more slowly than the population. This creates a disappropriation burden on social and economic infrastructure and provision of basic services,” said Nkomo-Ralehoko

To address, these challenges the province will invest in the infrastructure budget which has increased by R199.4 million to cater for occupational health and safety repairs, refurbishment of health facilities and maintenance of existing buildings across provincial departments.

This will assist the province to grow the economy and job creation. MEC Nkomo- Ralehoko said GPG would invest in infrastructure development to stimulate economic growth in the province – necessary for dealing with poverty, unemployment and inequality.

“The Department of Infrastructure Development and Property Management is currently finalising Gauteng’s five-year infrastructure project pipeline. Our focus is also on establishing partnerships, particularly levering on private sector financing for implementation of large infrastructure programmes and projects in the province,” she said.

Allocations also include road and transport infrastructure maintenance and repairs which has been allocated R91.4 million.

To enhance revenue collection, R33.4 million was allocated to the Department of Economic Development for the Gauteng Gambling Board’s business automation project aimed at improving revenue maximisation in the gambling environment. Health received R59 million for the Health Revenue Incentive Scheme.

“Provincial own revenue plays a significant role in augmenting national transfers and providing resources for provincially determined priorities. Over the current 2020 MTEF we expect to collect R21.2 billion in own revenue,” she said.

“Revenue collection estimates are expected to increase by 11% which is above the normal baseline, specifically, for motor vehicle licenses, casino licenses, whilst the other revenue sources remain at their baseline levels, over the medium-term period,” she added.

On the plan to fund the plan of Growing Gauteng Together. “In this adjustment budget we have managed to realign an estimated amount of R47 billion within the existing fiscal envelope to the GGT priorities,” she said.

MEC Nkomo-Ralehoko said over the next three years, Gauteng Provincial Government’s Wage Bill must not exceed a maximum of 60% of the total budget of the province.

“The rationale for keeping the wage bill below 60% is to ensure that there is no crowding out of resources once salaries have been paid, there needs to be money left for operational programmes,” she said.

Turning to local government, the MEC announced that National Treasury would not be withholding the December tranche of the Equitable Share from any of the Gauteng municipalities. “Due to our exerted efforts, our affected municipalities adopted special adjustments budgets,” she concluded.

Source: Gauteng Province