(From right) Barkat, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Likud MK Ze’ev Elkin (who also serves as Jerusalem affairs minister) attend a special cabinet meeting at Ammunition Hill marking Jerusalem Day on May 20.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
In 2014, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spent NIS 1,965,373 on his two residences, according to receipts released to Yediot Aharonot Sunday after a freedom of information request to the government.
The great majority of the money (close to NIS 1.7 million) was spent on the official Prime Minister’s Residence in Jerusalem, while just under NIS 300,000 was spent on his private home in Caesarea.
The figures indicated a decline in spending from NIS 2.44m. in 2013 and NIS 3.22m in. 2012.
In the past, details reported by the media have caused minor uproars. Just last week, the prime minister was reported to have spent $1,600 on a hairdresser and $1,750 on a makeup artist during his October trip to New York. In 2013, Calcalist reported a NIS 10,000 price tag for buying ice cream from Netanyahu’s favorite ice cream parlor. In 2015, responding to criticism of lavish overspending, Netanyahu’s wife, Sara, invited celebrity interior designer Moshik Galamin for a tour of the Prime Minister’s Residence in Jerusalem, to try to demonstrate just how shabby it was in. The tour included broken lights, stained curtains, and old, dried-up flowers.
This year’s report had the usual variety of seemingly inexplicable spending price tags. For example, the state paid nearly NIS 9,000 for cleaning costs in the Caesarea home, NIS 11,000 on fixing window shutters, and NIS 24,000 on fees for psychological opinions, though it was not specified for whom or under what circumstances.
The Prime Minister’s Office commented on the reports that “there’s nothing new here.” The overall figures, it said, were published before, in line with spending standards for heads of government, and approved by the government technocrats.