Yad Sarah: Gas hikes hurt voluntary organizations

Unlike private businesses, voluntary organizations are not compensated for taxes on petrol.

February 28, 2012 02:19
1 minute read.
Yad Sarah's new building Beersheba

Yad Sarah building Beersheba 311. (photo credit: Yocheved Miriam Russo)


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Voluntary organizations like Yad Sarah strongly oppose the sharp increase in gasoline prices because, unlike private businesses, they are not compensated for taxes on petrol.

Yad Sarah, the nationwide organization for the ill, elderly and disabled, said on Monday that it suffers from such increases because it has a fleet of 40 Nechonit vans for transporting the wheelchair bound and trucks for supplying medical equipment to branches.

The organization said it purchases some 40,000 liters of gas monthly or half a million a year, each of which will soon cost NIS 8. Its annual gasoline bill is already NIS 3 million.

As it operates on contributions, it was forced to raise its charge for Nechonit vans – which it subsidizes to the tune of 50 percent – by NIS 10 the last time gas prices rose. The charge by a private ambulance company is three times higher for the same distance, said Yoel Levy, Yad Sarah’s vehicle branch head.

Each van travels 65,000 kilometers yearly, and three trucks move medical equipment for lending out among its 100 branches.

As commercial firms receive rebates in value-added tax for these expenses, voluntary organizations that do not are discriminated against by the tax authorities, Yad Sarah charged.

Help is needed because the disabled are also usually low income and such transport is vital for their health, the organization said. Yad Sarah concluded that despite the higher transport costs, the handicapped must not be prevented from leaving their homes due to economic problems.

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