The year is almost finished and other cities are currently putting the finishing touches on their budgets for 2008, but Hod Hasharon has yet to balance its 2007 budget, reports local.co.il.
The city's budget has been inflated by some NIS 6 million from the NIS 257.5m. approved at the beginning of the year, with some departments receiving more than was allocated to them and others getting less, and the city has not yet balanced its books for the year.
According to the report, numerous municipal services - including welfare, food programs for the needy, care for the elderly, schoolbooks for impoverished children, educational institutions and youth movements - have all received significantly less money than was approved for them in the city's budget at the beginning of the year. By contrast, some municipal departments received considerably more money than was budgeted for them. The city's car expenses grew by NIS 700,000, its financial management section received an extra NIS 400,000, municipal celebrations and ceremonies got an extra NIS 418,000, and the municipal spokesman's office obtained an extra NIS 156,000 for building work.
A municipal spokesman said the budget was adjusted throughout the year to suit different needs, with unused moneys from one department being transferred to others. The spokesman explained that this did not harm the daily activities of various departments, and it was "nonsensical" to complain there had been a cut in the welfare and education budgets, when both were top priorities for mayor Hai Adiv.
The spokesman said that the entire education and culture budget for 2007 was NIS 88m. and for welfare was NIS 18.3m., up about 10 percent from 2006.
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