Ashkelon Council: State Compensation Insufficient

A proposed compensation package for local residents pays minimum wage, fails to address the economic impact of rockets.

Gabe Kahn ,

Rocket hits Ashdod
Rocket hits Ashdod
Israel news photo: Flash 90

The Knesset Finance Committee this week discussed a Treasury proposal to compensate residents in Israel's south who were forced into bomb shelters during four days of intense rocket fire in early April.

According to the proposal placed before the committee for approval, NIS 230 will be paid for loss of work for each day due to school closures in the south stemming from the rocket fire, which forced many parents to remain home with their children.

Ashkelon Regional Council head Yair Farjoun told Arutz Sheva the compensation package offered wasn't realistic.

"The proposal of compensation is positive," Farjoun said. "But, it must be understood that NIS 230 per day is the minimum wage. Rocket fire disrupts life. Parents do not send children to school, mothers do not go to work, and losses are incurred."

He said residents want to live in the area, despite the security problems, but the state must deal with resultant economic impact.

"We are not here for sixty years, but a thousand years," He said. "The state must help the victims. There is no justification for citizens losing days of work because the state does not provide them with security. I understand the situation will probably continue for many years, but the country needs to give the residents assistance to cope with it."

Farjoun pointed to last night's rocket attack, saying that the absence of casualties or serious property damage did not mean economic losses weren't incurred.

"I can tell you that an event like Zikim last night... for two weeks people cancel coming to the beach," Farjoun said. "We wanted to organize the festival for Coca-Cola in the summer, but they asked me how I could guarantee a rocket won't suddenly come down. Who will compensate us [if we lose this festival]?"