The World Zionist Organization on Friday passed an ambitious reform plan that sought to streamline the organization's bureaucracy and enhance its image.
By the end of the year, before the Zionist Congress next meets, the WZO's four departments will be cut down to two, and the job of department director-general will be removed. The cut to overhead costs within the $14 million annual budget will mean a greater investment in Hebrew language education outside Israel and increased Zionism education for Israeli schoolchildren. The 110-year-old organization sought the reform to stave off criticism that its organizational structure was archaic and wasteful.
The WZO, which brings together in its congresses representatives from the world's Zionist organizations and all Zionist parties in the Knesset, is important in that it appoints half of the Jewish Agency's officials, who preside over the Agency's $400m. annual budget and its network of emissaries worldwide. The other half of Agency officialdom comes from the fund-raising organizations the United Jewish Communities and Keren Hayesod.