Bill leaves responsibility for bomb shelters unclear
Home Front Command, local authorities avoid responsibility in newly approved legislation; MK Eldad plans to stop "total anarchy."
Israeli child in a bomb shelter Photo: REUTERS/Amir Cohen
The Home Front Command and local authorities will no longer be responsible for
inspecting bomb shelters, according to a bill approved for its second and third
plenum Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee decision this week.
Eldad (National Union) is planning a one-man filibuster for when the amendment
to the Citizens’ Defense Law is brought to a vote, submitting hundreds of
objections to the legislation.
The bill ostensibly transfers
responsibility for supervising shelters from the Home Front Command to local
However, the language of the legislation says that local
authorities “are permitted” to inspect shelters, not that they must.
Ze’ev Bielski (Kadima) presided over the meeting on Wednesday, which was closed
to the press, saying that it would be ideal to force local authorities to act,
but it is currently impossible because of budget constraints.
meeting simply authorized the agreements between the Home Front Command and the
Union of Local Authorities in Israel on responsibility for maintaining
shelters,” the Kadima MK explained. “I will make an effort to have additional
funds transferred to local authorities that will allow them to take
responsibility for 107,000 shelters.”
Bielski and MK Nissim Ze’ev (Shas),
both of whom began their political careers in local authorities, voted in favor
of the bill, while Eldad opposed.
“Even though the threats on the home
front are escalating and becoming more severe, the local authorities are trying
to exempt themselves from responsibility ahead of the next war and the next
investigative committee,” the National Union MK said.
Eldad said the
amendment will bring “total anarchy,” and called it a “scandalous situation.”