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Sh371bn allocated to counties in this year’s budget

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BY NAMULONGO PETER,NAIROBI,13TH JUNE 2019-The government has  Sh371bn in this year’s budget for counties , of which Sh310 billion will go to the equitable share.

This is a slight decrease from 372.7 billion allocated in the 2018/19 financial year.

While presenting the budget statement for the year 2019/2020 in Parliament buildings on Thursday, Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich urged the joint mediation team to speed up the conclusion of division of revenue proposal.

“The county government’s equitable share of revenue was allocated among counties on the basis of revenue allocation criteria approved by Parliament according to Article 217 of the Constitution,” stated the Treasury CS.

The committee that was set up to unlock the stalemate surrounding the County Revenue Bill which seeks to determine the allocation of monies counties should get, hit a snag after members failed to reach consensus.

The team that comprises five members from Jubilee and three from the Opposition has been meeting for close to 10 days to unlock the allocation of funds dispute after the Senate demanded to be given Sh335 billion but the National Assembly stuck to Sh314 billion.

According to Members from the National Assembly, they were from onset opposed to Senate’s demands of more funds in a bid to curb the skyrocketing country’s debt.

County bosses will however have no alternative but to minimalize on the allocated resources until the impasse is resolved.

Only six Counties will get more than Sh10 billion, with Nairobi County getting the lion’s share after Treasury allocated it Sh15.6 billion.

Kakamega, Nakuru, Turkana, Kilifi and Mandera counties will each receive slightly more than Sh10 billion.

The counties will also receive additional funds from the national government to cater for leasing of medical equipment, Level 5 hospitals, construction of County headquarters and rehabilitation of youth polytechnics.

Counties will also be eligible to conditional loans and grants from fuel levy, funds for roads construction and maintenance.

Additionally, Sh38.7 billion in loans will go towards supporting devolution of Level 1 and Level 2 hospitals universal health coverage programme, agriculture and other projects.

Rotich also urged  counties to adhere policy of clearing pending bills and ensure that they complete ongoing projects before embarking on new ones.

 

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