Increase of revenue in Nakuru County.

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Nakuru County defied Covis-19 economic aftershocks to post the highest-ever own source revenue collection of Sh2.82 billion, a report has shown.

Charles Lwanga, the county receiver of revenue, revealed that despite the pandemic, the county collected over Sh400 million more.

“There was disruption of economic activities during the 2020-2021 financial year, but our revenue collection for the period increased to Sh2.82 billion, the highest ever,” said Lwanga.

At the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic in March 2020, the county government relocated markets and bus parks due to challenges in collection and management of the county’s own-source revenues.

“The pandemic affected major sources of county revenue including parking fees, barrier cess, and trade and liquor licenses,” said Lwanga, adding that revenue surpassed the Sh2.44 billion collected in 2019/2020 financial year.

He attributed the increase in revenues collected to the “stability attained by rate payers who benefited from incentives, as well as total waiver of penalties and reduced charges beginning July 2020.”

During the year, Facility Improvement Fees (FIF) contributed the highest collection at Sh1.19 billion, followed by land rates (Sh401m), trade licenses (Sh316m), royalties (Sh223m), parking fees (Sh219m) and advertising at Sh108 million.

The county government, which is pushing for the elevation of Nakuru municipality (Nakuru East and Nakuru West sub-counties) to city status, has underscored the need to enhance revenue collection.

“Our own-source revenue in the 2021-2022 financial year is on an upward trajectory. In the first quarter of the year (July-September 2021), we registered a collection of Sh818 million,” he said.

This is the highest ever collection in the first quarter of the past five financial years. During a similar period in the previous financial year, the county collected Sh588.4 million.

Lwanga said that political interference and the impending 2022 General Election are likely to impact on revenue collection for the remaining period.

Governor Lee Kinyanjui praised the department, saying that the growing collections would go a long way in improving service delivery to residents.

“We are proud to be among the few counties recording an increase in revenue collection. With this, we have the capacity to operate as an autonomous unit in the future,” he said. 

Speaking at a meeting with members of the business community, the governor also awarded top rate payers in recognition of their contribution to the county’s revenue streams. 

Kenya Association of Manufacturers chairperson Peris Mbuthia urged the county to ensure the growing revenue collection translates to improved service delivery and a better business environment. 

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