Jerusalem City Council to vote on property tax discount for reservists

More than 28,000 reservists set to receive 5% reduction in arnona if measure approved.

March 15, 2018 15:41
1 minute read.

The reservists of the 360th Battalion pose for a ‘thank-you’ photo for supplies donated by a Facebook fund-raising campaign.. (photo credit: Courtesy)

Reservists who live in Jerusalem might receive a discount in their property taxes if a measure being brought to the city council by Mayor Nir Barkat is approved.

Deputy Defense Minister Eli Ben-Dahan has been working for two years get a government decision to grant active reservists a discount of up to 5% in arnona municipal taxes implemented throughout the country.

The law was signed in late June by Interior Minister Arye Deri, allowing the local authorities to grant the discount, subject to the approval of the council this week.

After the signing Ben-Dahan turned to Barkat and asked him to be the first to implement the discount.

“As someone who has done more than 60 days of reserve duty per year for years, I know how important it is to pay tribute to the reservists from Jerusalem who leave the families for many days and nights, under difficult conditions, to protect us,” Barkat said.
“These values ​​of loving the land and volunteering for it are what we want to have in mind when making this important decision. I am proud of you,” he added.

While Israel is known for its compulsory military draft, according to army statistics, reservists make up approximately 71% of the IDF’s manpower.

The army reduced its reserve fighting force by 20% in 2016, placing a greater emphasis on training for remaining reservists.
In May, the army released figures showing the average age of reservists to be 32. Tel Aviv contributed the most reservists for the second year in a row, with 37,156 from that city serving in 2017 and 34,182 in 2016.

The numbers in Jerusalem stood at 28,252 in 2017, up from the 26,666 in 2016.

“We must recognize the great sacrifice that reservists are giving in order to safeguard the security of the citizens of Israel, and it is our duty to thank them for that,” Ben-Dahan said.

“I am pleased that Mayor Barkat has accepted my request and will be the first to approve the maximum cost of municipal taxes for reservists,” he added, saying he expects other municipalities will soon follow suit.

The cities of El’ad, Arad and Lod are expected to vote on such discounts in coming months.

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