Counties to share Ksh.370B in 2021/22 financial year as Senators approve division of revenue bill

Counties to share Ksh.370B in 2021/22 financial year as Senators approve division of revenue bill
File image of the Senate of Kenya.

The Senate has passed the Division of Revenue Bill where county governments are to receive Ksh.370 billion for the 2021/2022 financial year.

County governments will be getting an increment of at least Ksh.50 billion in improved shareable allocation, this as the controversial third basis county revenue sharing formula kicks in, a formula that was arrived at after 10 sittings.

It was a special sitting to consider a bill that determines the shareable revenue between the national and county governments; with the Senate passing the bill, it now sets the stage on how the two levels of government are to share revenue.

In a budget of Ksh.1.7 trillion, the national government will receive Ksh.1.39 trillion while county equitable share has been capped at Ksh.370 billion for the 2021/2022 financial year; this being an improvement of over Ksh.50 billion from the Ksh.316 billion sent to counties in the 2020/2021 financial year

Senators are however faulting a plot to include conditional grants and loans as part of the county equitable revenue share.

“Conditional grants cannot be part of shareable revenue…and the Executive is very good at playing gymnastics, like they played it with medical equipment…that this belongs to you, but we’re not going to release the funds for you to spend, but we’re going to spend it at source,” said Siaya Senator James Orengo.

The Senators are now putting pressure on Treasury to ensure timely disbursement of funds to counties, claiming that the Treasury is still holding onto at least Ksh.52 billion meant for counties in late disbursement.

“This issue of late disbursement to counties is an elephant in the room, I don’t know why the current CS is having a problem with disbursement. I remember when the former CS was in office, every fifth of every month counties would have received their money,” said Kericho Senator Samson Cherargei.

With enhanced funding of over Ksh.50 billion more from the previous allocation to counties, the Senators warned county bosses and governments to be prudent in their financial management as some of them have been in the spotlight for low absorption rates and failure to account for billions of shillings in their budget.

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