Barak, Sa'ar exchange verbal blows over state budget

After Defense Ministry demands additional NIS 6 billion education minister says this is anti-state; Barak: Sa'ar should do homework.

Barak stink-eye 311 (photo credit: Courtesy)
Barak stink-eye 311
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Euducation Minister Gideon Sa'ar exchanged severe verbal punches Tuesday evening regarding a demand from the Defense Ministry for the addition of NIS 6 billion as the Knesset is set to approve the state budget for the next two years.
"This is outrageous conduct, Sa'ar argued. "The defense establishment's conduct is anti-state, undermines the principle of shared responsibility and expresses contempt for civil government decisions."
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Barak's office responded by saying "we regret that the Education Minister, Gideon Saar, publishes populist messages based on erroneous data, and manipulation of information. The education minister should do his homework before he expresses his opinion."
At the end of November Sa’ar presented the Knesset Finance Committee with his budget proposal for the school system for 2011 and 2012, which if approved, will see spending increase by nearly NIS 4 billion.
The proposal would see the budget climb to NIS 37.5b. in 2011 and NIS 38.5b. in 2012, increases of 7.5 percent and 3.8%, respectively. Assuming they are approved, the budget will have increased 34.1% since 2006, when the state spent NIS 27.13b. on education.
The largest portion of the proposal would go to elementary schools, which would receive 34% of the entire budget. The draft budget includes a 30.2% increase in funding for education administration and 11.7% for private education, as well as a 61.5% rise in spending on renovating educational institutions.