DECISIONS TAKEN BY THE CABINET OF MINISTERS AT ITS MEETING HELD ON 15-08-2017

 01. False media report s on cut off of Samurdhi Allowance


Public have been misled by the false media reports, saying that Samurdhi Allowance of some beneficiaries has been suspended. The Cabinet has noted that the government has not taken any decision to cut off the Samurdhi allowance and H.E. the President has emphasized it the other day.

02. Supply of vehicles and equipments to Institutions under the preview of the ministry of Sustainable Development and Wildlife ( Document No. 09 )

Considering a proposal made by sustainable Development and Wildlife Minister Gamini Jayawickrema Perera, to provide essential vehicles and equipments for the Development of Wildlife Conservation, Department of National Botanical Gardens, the Cabinet has approved to provide allocations in 2018 and 2019, for the above purpose and to provide Rs. 500 million in 2018 as its first phase.

03. Amendment of the Motor Traffic Act (Document No – 10)

The Legal Draftsmen has drafted on amendment bill for amending relevant articles and schedule No II of the above act to make provisions on transferring the authority of practically implementing Driver’s demerit point system, to magistrates and police officers, Declare the minimum qualifications for drivers who transport dangerous chemicals, emergency services, and public transport services, regulation of speech limits, introduction of electronic payment platform for payment of fines. Introduce new classes of vehicle for registration of special vehicles, etc. The proposal made by the Transport and civil Aviation Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, to publish the said bill in gazette and present in parliament for approved, was approved by the Cabinet of Minister.

04. Collection of arrears of taxes for “luxury” “semi luxury” and semi luxury dual purpose” vehicles (Document No – 12)

An annual tax should be paid for travelling classes of vehicles for Seven years since its registration as per the Finance Act No 16 of 1995

• Luxury vehicles – ( Diesel motor cars exceeding cylinder capacity of 2500 and petrol motor cars exceeding cylinder capacity of 2000)

• Semi Luxury vehicles – (Diesel motor cars 2201-2500cc, Diesel jeeps exceeding 2200 cc. petrol cars 1801-2000cc, petrol jeeps exceeding 1800 cc)

• Semi Luxury dual purpose Vehicles – (Diesel cabs exceeding 2200 cc, Petrol cabs exceeding 1800 cc)

The first installment of the tax should be paid to the Department of Motor Traffic at the registration and the rest installments could be paid either to the department or to the insurance company. Omission of taxes are liable to a 50% levy and the total due amount is above Rs. 350 million. Considering that such omissions may be due to reasons beyond the control of vehicle owners, the proposal made by the Transport and Civil Aviation, Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva to declare a 03 month concessionary period from 01 Sep 2017 to 30 Nov.2017, and to charge only 5% levy during that period, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.

05. Amendment of National Aquaculture Development Authority of Sri Lanka Act No. 53 of 1998. (Document No. 16)

With the Development of aquaculture field in Sri Lanka Provisions required for, Providing a Legal frame Work for regulation, conservation and management of activities and for implementing punishments for identified offences, importation of organisms, materials and equipment's, and for issuing of relevant licenses, should be included in the above act.
Accordingly, the proposal made by the Fisheries and aquatic Resources Development Minister, Mahinda Amaraweera, to ascend the above act and to appoint a Committee to make proposal and recommendations in this regard, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.

06. Amendment of Tea, Rubber and Coconut Estates (Control of fragmentation) Act No.2 of 1958 (Document No.22)

Under the above act for fragmentation or transfer of a coconut estate larger than 04 hectares and Tea, and Rubber states larger than 20 hectares, a certificate of consent should be obtained from the Tea, Rubber and Coconut Estates (Control of fragmentation) Board.
It is a timely need to be flexible in this law for using such lands to large scale development projects. Accordingly, the proposal made by the plantation Industries minister Navin Dissanayake to reduce the above limitations as 02 hectares (05 acres) for Coconut lands and 08 hectares (20 acres) for Tea and Rubber estates, by amending the above act was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.

07. Making relief for tea small holders affected by floods and landslides. (Document No.23)

The estates of 457.37 hectares have been damaged completely and 1,823.10 hectares have been damaged partially due in Galle, Ratnapura, Matara, Hambantota Kalutara, Colombo and Kegalle Districts due to floods and landslides Occurred in May 2017. The Proposal made by the Plantation Industries Minister Navin Dissanayake, to provide plants and fertilizer to restore damaged cultivations and to implement a program to provide financial assistance for uplifting the living status of those who were affected, was approved by the cabinet of Ministers.

08. Accelerated program for middle income housing and infrastructure development (Document No.28)

Four projects have been commenced in Wadduwa, Homagama, Jaffna and Ragama towns under the above program and several projects are to be implemented in the future.
Accordingly, the proposal made by the Housing and Constructions Minister Sajith Premadasa to transfer several land lots own by the government to the National Housing development Authority, Gampaha, Kalutara, Kurunegala, Puttalam, Matale, Badulla and Matara Districts to implement proposal projects ,was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.

09. Port Access Elevated Highway Project / Construction of a new seventeen storied office building and four factories for Sri Lanka Port authority (Document No. 40)

Above project will commence in February 2018 and it world reach the area of SLPA buildings in December 2018.Above constructions are to be done providing space in lieu of removing buildings and the proposal made by Higher Education and Highway Minister Lakshman Kiriella, to call proposals from central Engineering Consultancy Bureau, and to award contracts, for accelerating the above constrictions, was approved by the Cabinet Ministers.

10. New projects to be implemented from 2018 for the development in plantation sector. (Document No 45)

The proposal made by the plantation industries Minister Navin Dissanayaka, to provide allocation of Rs.730 million from the general treasury for 10 projects propose to be implemented by Rubber Research Institute, Coconut Cultivation Board, National Institute of Plantation Management and Thurusaviya Fund under the supervision of the Ministry of Plantation Industries, was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers.

11. Provide the house rent allowance of Rs.50000 for house owner’s evacuated due to land side in Meethotamulla waste Dump. (Document No 53)

Families who were considering as in a high risk were evacuated from the Area and 91 families have been provided alternative houses. 60 more families have expressed their intention to obtain alternative houses, and the proposal made by the Disaster Management Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa to grant the house rent allowance of Rs.50, 000 to 141 displaced families for August 2017 including the above mentioned 60 families, was approved by the cabinet of ministers.