KUALA TERENGGANU, May 6 – The Terengganu Assessment Rate Hike Issue Action Committee Tuesday submitted a written protest on a valuation list review notice issued by the Kuala Terengganu City Council (MBKT). Its chairman Ahmad Amzad Hashim said the committee was a coalition of 40 non-government organisations (NGO) in Terengganu that submitted a protest note against the hike in assessment rates, which was reassessed via the notice, because it was too high and drastic. “Residential premises experienced hikes of 100 percent, 200 percent and 600 percent. In fact, some experienced increases of up to 1,000 percent, from RM120 in assessment rate to RM1,200.

“There were also cases whereby residential premises, especially houses in village areas, which in the past had not been imposed assessment rates, receiving notices to pay the tax from next year,” he said. The written protest was submitted to assistant administrative officer at the MBKT City Mayor’s office, Mohamad Muda who represented the Kuala Terengganu City Mayor, Datuk Adzlan Mohd Dagang at 10am. Ahmad Amzad said the notice was a preliminary procedure for MBKT’s move to increase the assessment rate for all the premises concerned by stating that the new assessment rates would be effective Jan 1, 2015.

“We hope MBKT will cancel the hike in assessment rates for the well-being of the people, especially in the Kuala Terengganu district,” he said. In this regard, Mohamad said the committee would scrutinize and carry out follow up actions on the protests received from the people and channel it to the state government. “Everyday we receive hundreds of protests from the people and action will be taken according to the rules, in fact the decision is not final.

The Kuala Terengganu City Mayor himself had also told all MBKT council members to inform the people that their protests must be submitted to the MBKT in writing before June 2,” he added. Meanwhile, Kuala Terengganu Mayor Datuk Adzlan Mohd Dagang said the a notice of the intended assessment hike was issued in March to enable the people to have enough time to provide their feedback and protests, latest by June 2. “It has not been finalised. It is only in the initial stage. Once we receive all the feedback and protests, it will be discussed in the council’s meeting,” he said.