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(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
Facing imminent legal action, Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski's United Torah Judaism party has reached an accord with the city to pay a long overdue fine dating back to the Jerusalem mayoral election campaign more than two years ago, city officials said this week.
At issue is an NIS 800,000 party fine that Lupolianski's United Torah Judaism received during the 2003 mayoral campaign for dirtying the city, including affixing campaign posters in illegal areas.
While nearly all the major political parties were also fined - albeit on a smaller scale - only Lupolianski's party had refused to pay any part of its fine until now, despite an offer for a 40 reduction in the fine, forcing the municipality's legal department to hire an external legal office in an attempt to settle the fine.
According to an agreement reached between United Torah Judaism and the city just before Rosh Hashana, the party, which won the largest amounts of seats on the local city council, will pay the city NIS 180,000, city officials said this week.
Jerusalem opposition leader Nir Barkat said that the two-year delay in payment of the fine was certainly not a personal example of commendable behavior on the part of the mayor, and smacked of a "double standard," and "contempt for the law."
The city spokesman, who also serves as Lupolianski's spokesman, said this week that the United Torah Judaism had reached an accord regarding the fine similar to all the other city parties.