Makueni County Assembly.The assembly passed the 2015/2016 budget. Photo:Communication Unit

Makueni County Assembly.The assembly passed the 2015/2016 budget.
Photo:Communication Unit

The Department of Health Services in Makueni County received the biggest allocation in the 2015/2016 budget passed by the County Assembly yesterday.

The department received a whooping Sh1.92B of the total budgetary allocation of sh6.4B. Out of the total department allocation sh1.6B that accounts for 83 percent will cater for recurrent expenditure while the remaining Sh321M will go to development including construction and upgrading of health facilities.

The allocation is a 2.7 percent increase from last financial year allocation of sh1.8B. Despite the increase the department is yet to meet the recommended development threshold of 30 percent of the total allocation.

The Department of Water received the second largest allocation of sh791M. The budgetary allocation is a 15 percent increment from last year’s sh685M. The county experiences perennial droughts occasioned by erratic and unpredictable weather patterns hence making water a key priority area. Sh630M will go development expenditure while sh161M was allocated for recurrent expenditure.

To cushion residents against water scarcity the county government will embark on a 18-month program focusing on water harvesting in the whole county, hence the allocation. The program is expected to expand agriculture output leading to creation of employment through agricultural based enterprises and overall economic transformation.

The department will further develop an integrated water harvesting system, which will entail afforestation, smart agriculture and construction of mega dams and water pans as well as rehabilitation of existing water sources.

The department plans to construct a minimum of 3000 water pans of 5000 cubic meters to store water for multipurpose consumption.

The County Assembly was also one of the biggest winners in the budget with an allocation of sh664M. The allocation entails a recurrent expenditure ceiling of sh523M as proposed by the Commission of Revenue Allocation and an additional sh71M approved by the Senate for the county assembly to cater for a deficit incurred in last year’s unpaid bills.

Transport and Infrastructure received an total allocation of sh531M up from last year’s sh327. Out of the total allocation sh377 will be used for development while the remaining sh121M will cater for recurrent expenditure.

The money is expected to be used in improving parking space, tarmacking and installation of cabros in major towns in the county. The allocation is also expected to fund road maintenance, construction of drifts, bridges and street lighting.

Other lion shareholders in the budget include Department of Education and ICT with an allocation of sh435M. The money is expected to fund a development budget of sh175M and sh259M for recurrent, out of which sh150M will go to bursaries.

Youth, Gender, Sports and Social Services recorded budgetary increment of 14 percent from last year sh188M to sh215M. Out of the total sh143M will go to development while sh72M will cater for recurrent budget.

Some of the losers in the budget include Lands and Urban planning whose allocation decreased by 21 percent to sh105 down from sh134M. The expenditure decreased because most of the infrastructural structures were transferred to the department of roads, transport and infrastructure.

Agriculture despite being a backbone of the economy in the county received sh425M with a meager increase of sh18M. This was a result of low fund absorption rates by the department whose balances from the last year stand at sh34M. Out of the total allocation sh205M is earmarked for development while the remaining 220 will go to recurrent budget.

The budget will be funded through revenues projected at sh400M and the National Government equitable share of sh5.8B and conditional grants totaling to sh168M.