How can a comic book help municipal officials do a better job? In the case of Brazil’s cadastre departments, charged with cataloguing land for the collection of the property tax, an illustrated booklet published by the Brazil’s Ministry of Cities and the Lincoln Institute, with support from Caixa Economica Federal, has proved to be widely popular. Zeca Dastro and Guidelines for the Multipurpose Territorial Cadastre available in Spanish and Portuguese, includes typical situations that employees of Brazil’s municipal cadastre departments confront in their efforts to implement new land information systems that meet the demands of both the public and private sectors.
Some 5,000 copies of the colorful and engaging booklet have been distributed through Brazil, providing a simplified interpretation of Brazil’s 2009 Guidelines for the Multipurpose Territorial Cadastre. The comic-book style approach strikes a chord with both municipal officials and the public, illustrating common scenarios and opportunities for the improvement of the cadastre system and the property tax, including better citizen involvement, said Martim O. Smolka, director of the Program on Latin America and the Caribbean. “The situations really come to life in this format, in a readable, attractive, and compelling way, for what can be very technical material,” he said. The booklet aims to address potential areas of confusion or misunderstanding.
Those interested in receiving hard copies should send a request with full address to email@example.com (O Manual está sendo distribuído em todos os municípios do Brasil. Aqueles que desejarem cópias impressas adicionais devem fazer a solicitação enviando seu endereço completo para o e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org ).
Plans are underway to extend the project to other topics. A similar illustrated booklet is about to be released on the property tax in general, and another is in the works on the sale of building rights, the system of value capture under the Brazilian urban development law.