The Union Finance Ministry has released an amount of Rs 685.80 crore to four states for providing grants to the Urban Local Bodies (ULBs).
Out of this, an amount of Rs 494 crore has been released to Uttar Pradesh, Rs 110.20 crore to Gujarat, Rs 74.80 crore to Jharkhand and Rs.6.80 crore to Mizoram.
Grants for ULBs have been released, as per the recommendations of the 15th Finance Commission, for improving basic civic services including fulfilling location specific felt needs.
These grants are intended for smaller (Non-Million Plus) cities including cantonment boards.
The 15th Finance Commission has divided the urban local bodies into two categories: Million-Plus urban agglomerations/cities (excluding Delhi and Srinagar), and all other cities and towns with less than one million population (Non-Million Plus cities). Out of the 15th Finance Commission recommended grants for Non-Million Plus cities, 50 per cent is basic (untied) and the remaining 50 per cent as tied grant.
Basic grants (untied) can be utilised for location specific felt needs except for salary or other establishment expenditure. The tied grants are to be utilised for drinking water (including rainwater harvesting and recycling) and solid waste management.
The grants are meant to ensure provision of additional funds to urban local bodies over and above the funds allocated by the Centre and the state for sanitation and drinking water under the Centrally Sponsored Schemes.
The states are required to transfer the grants to the ULBs within 10 working days of receipt from the Union Government. Any delay beyond 10 working days requires the state governments to release the grants with interest.