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15th Finance Commission holds metting with Goa Govt

Panaji, Jan 24 (UNI) The 15th Finance Commission headed by Chairman N K Singh along with its members and senior officials met Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant alongwith his cabinet colleagues and senior State Government officials.
The commission expressed concern over tourism related issues being faced by the state.
" In the recent past, Goa has been facing the problem of slower own tax revenue growth. The slowdown in the economy is affecting the revenue potential of the State. The nominal GSDP growth in Goa has fallen to 8.5 percent in 2015-16 from an average of 12 percent in the last decade," it said.
It asked the State Government to make progress towards increasing capital expenditure, eliminating AT&D losses in the power sector, and improving the quality of such expenditure in generating future income streams.
The State Government had been irregular in constitution of State Finance Commission and not implemented recommendations of any two SFCs so far constituted in spite of having 190 Village Panchayats and 14 ULBs (Urban Local Bodies).
All the functions mentioned under Eleventh and Twelfth Schedule of the Constitution had not yet fully devolved to the local bodies, it observed and sought to know about the natural disaster preparedness of the State.
The Commission also sought information on how the State dealt with the huge tourist arrival (both domestic & international) in Goa each year.
Earlier, the Commission had held a meeting with the representatives of the political parties of the state which included
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Congress, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), Goa Forward Party (GFP) and Communist Party of India (CPI). All the parties put forth issues and problems being faced by the state.
The State Government gave a detailed presentation of the current fiscal situation of Goa and its requirements for funds. The State has submitted a demand for grant of Rs.6333.32 crores in addition to the overall tax devolution.
The Commission assured to look into all matters and issues, specifically solid waste management, tourism development, etc. before making its recommendations to the Union Government.
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