The Tamil Nadu Assembly on Thursday adopted three amendment Bills, including one for amending the state’s Fiscal Responsibility Act and the House was later adjourned sine die. The TN Fiscal Responsibility Act 2003 was amended to extend the time limit to eliminate revenue deficit and reduce fiscal deficit to three per cent of Gross State Domestic Product by 31 March 2024, the statement on objects and reasons for the Bill said.
The government decided to amend that legislation based on the recommendations of the 15th Finance Commission. The commission recommended an extra annual borrowing space for the states to the extent of 0.50 per cent of their GSDP for each of the first four years covering 2021-22 to 2024-25 based on certain performance criteria in the power sector.
Further, the Finance Commission recommended fixing the net borrowing limit to GSDP at 4 per cent (2021-22) 3.5 per cent (2022-23) and 3 per cent (2023-24 to 2025-26). Two Bills were passed for amending laws related to local bodies, both urban and rural (covering nine districts including Kancheepuram and polls were held in 2019 for rural local bodies in other districts).
This was to extend the term of office of special officers (as their term expires on 30 June) upto 31 December 2021 or until the first meeeting of the council after polls, whichever is earlier. The Bills were piloted by Ministers holding the portfolios of Finance (Palanivel Thiaga Rajan), Municipal Administration (K N Nehru) and Rural Development (KR Periakaruppan).
Later, the Assembly was adjourned sine die by Speaker M Appavu after leader of the House, Duraimurugan moved a resolution. The Assembly session, first after the DMK government assumed office last month, began on June 21 with Governor Banwarilal Purohit’s ceremonial Address to the House.
Later, the motion of thanks to the Governor’s Address was taken up which saw the treasury benches and the main opposition crossing swords over several issues including the handling of COVID-19 pandemic and reopening of liquor outlets. Chief Minister M K Stalin replied to the discussion on Thursday while Leader of Opposition K Palaniswami spoke on June 23.