Financial impact of COVID-19

Local Government Minister Premila Kumar speaking in Parliament last week Friday. Picture: PARLIAMENT OF FIJI/SUPPLIED

The financial impact of COVID-19 on cities and towns across the country and lives and livelihoods are going to be serious in the long term, says Local Government Minister Premila Kumar.

She told Parliament that councils’ revenue streams such as rates, garbage collection fees, hiring of sports and event venues and parking meter fees were affected.

Mrs Kumar said moving forward the Ministry of Local Government and municipal councils, despite the financial impacts, would continue to work with the Ministry of Health and Medical Services and the Ministry of Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport to ensure safe opening of businesses, public facilities and markets while ensuring the safety for its ratepayers.

And in terms of adhering to the COVID-19 health protocols, Mrs Kumar said regular awareness was being carried in the market.

She also said council officers regularly visited the bus terminals to conduct awareness on COVID safe measures to the public who were waiting for their buses.

“Health inspectors with NFA staff conducted awareness on COVID safe practices to the residents of municipalities and informal settlements in Lautoka and Nadi,” she added.

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