Katz: Israel to have a budget on Sunday

Katz hinted during an interview with Reshet Bet that a budget would be “the third leg” needed to reach stability amid the coronavirus crisis.

Israel Katz chats with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a cabinet meeting (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Israel Katz chats with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a cabinet meeting
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Finance Minister Israel Katz said on Wednesday that “the state of Israel needs a budget” and that it is his intention to present one to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday.
Katz hinted during an interview with Reshet Bet that a budget would be “the third leg” needed to reach stability amid the coronavirus crisis. The budget would come after the country passed the “Check for Every Citizen” and the general safety net plans. 
The interview came on the heels of a meeting that Katz held at the Knesset with Alternate Prime Minister and Defense Minister Benny Gantz about the budget on Wednesday. The two men did not reach any agreements. 
Blue and White is pushing for a two-year budget, while Katz and the rest of his Likud party are pushing for a one-year budget. The coalition government agreement requires a two-year budget, but claims that the COVID-19 pandemic made a long-term budget impractical. 
Science and Technology Minister Yizhar Shai told the Jerusalem Post’s sister publication Maariv that “anyone who threatens with elections is not posing a threat to Blue and White, but to the people of this country.”  He argued that a short-team budget would not offer Israelis the stability they need.
Housing and Construction Minister Ya’acov Litzman (Agudat Yisrael) allegedly held a meeting with a high-ranking Blue and White member and warned him that "if this game of yours will go on....we'll simply head towards [new] elections," Reshet Bet reported. 
The deadline for finalizing the budget is August 25.
The ultra-Orthodox community has high expectations for the budget, as it would include needed funding for its schools.
To fund the benefits programs the administration already passed, Israel is expected to increase its deficit. Netanyahu has said that the national economy is “in good condition” and that “we shouldn’t be afraid to take loans.”