Government to add 52 million NIS to yeshiva budget

Government adds money for growing yeshivas, Meretz MK blames government for 'burning' secular money.

Ben Shaul ,

Mir Yeshiva
Mir Yeshiva
Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

Israel's coalition is expected to approve on Sunday an addition of 52 million NIS to the existing biannual yeshiva budget. This will bring the yeshiva budget to 1,224 billion NIS.

The reason for the addition is the natural growth of yeshivas, as more men over 18 join the post-high school yeshivas. In the coalition agreement between Likud and the haredi parties of UTJ and Shas, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu promised the government would give yeshivas 477 NIS for each unmarried student and 857 NIS for each married student, regardless of how many students are enrolled in a given yeshiva.

Responding to the decision, Meretz leader MK Zehava Galon said the government had decided to "burn" money intended for "its own" secular voters.

"The government is about to burn an additional 52.5 million NIS of your money for the sake of adding to the yeshiva budget. They want 'to make the budget reflect the number of yeshiva students.' And so the yeshiva budget will reach an all-time high of 1.22 billion NIS," Galon wrote on her Facebook page.

Finance Committee Head MK Moshe Gafni (UTJ) told Radio Moreshet on Sunday morning, "I don't understand what MK Galon wants. She can call me up and ask me what the story behind the budget is. It's an integral part of the coalition agreement."