Abolition of local religious councils put on hold

A bill to abolish local religious councils was delayed from further legislative progress on Sunday, following a request by Bayit Yehudi to debate the proposed law within the coalition  before allowing it to advance.
The bill, proposed by MK Robert Ilatov (Likud Beytenu), would put local municipal authorities in charge of religious services in place of the religious councils, which have frequently been criticized for providing unwelcoming services and for being unaccountable.
The current coalition has clashed several times on matters of religion and state, with Bayit Yehudi insisting that all such legislation be coordinated with and approved by it before being allowed to advance to the Knesset.
The bill was removed from the agenda of the Ministerial Committee for Legislation on Sunday, and will now be discussed in coalition meetings on Tuesday.
But a Bayit Yehudi source told The Jerusalem Post that the party was totally opposed to abolishing the religious councils and would not allow the bill to reach the Knesset.
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