Nairobi County freezes pay increase, stops recruitment

Nairobi County Government will freeze pay increase for its employees in the 2015/16 financial year.

Presenting the Sh30.8 billion Budget for 2015/16, the County Executive in charge of Finance and Economic Planning Gregory Mwakanongo said the devolved unit will equally not recruit new employees, especially non-essential cadres.

He said the county government will instead institute measures to stop increase in the wage bill by freezing pay hikes and non-recruitment for non-essential cadres.

Mr Mwakanongo explained that the plan to suspend pay increase is part of the county government’s strategy to enhance efficiency in service delivery.

“The governor has made it a priority to shift more resources to development from recurrent to spur development. This will only be possible if we contain the ever-growing wage bill while exploring new revenue streams,” said Mwakanongo.

He observed that the resources from the local sources will be underpinned by efficiency in the revenue collection systems and platforms.

“It should be noted that I will not be seeking to increase the fees and charges in the Finance Bill 2015 but we shall focus on improving our own efficiency,” he added.

He said the county will spend Sh12.9 billion to finance personnel related costs accounting to 65 per cent of the total budget. Currently, the county government has about 11,000 employees - permanent and casual. Due to bloated workforce, the devolved government has been experiencing cash crisis resulting in delayed salary payment and sometimes industrial actions. Most workers were inherited from the defunct Nairobi City Council.

Mwakanongo said the county’s expenditure for the 2015/16 financial year is based on the County Fiscal Strategy Paper of 2015 which channels more resources to development.

“The total overall expenditure is Sh30.8 billion - being Sh19.8 billion representing 64 per cent for recurrent expenditure and Sh11 billion (36 per cent) for development expenditure,” he said. “Of the total recurrent expenditure, Sh12.9 billion which is 65 per cent of the budget to be extended to fund personnel related costs,” he added.

To raise the needed resources to finance budget, the county government plans to pursue dues from traders, land and vehicle owners.

The county will receive Sh13.4 billion from the Central Government and expects to raise the remaining Sh17.4 billion from other sources such as parking, land rates and permit fees.

In 2014/15 financial year, the county government through in the Finance Bill 2014 attempted to increase all rates to raise the targeted revenue of Sh15.6 billion. However, the bill was shot down by the county assembly.

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