Jerusalem mayor to dramatically increase spending on capital in 2015 budget

Additional infusion of NIS 770 m. from Finance Ministry to go toward 13% increase in annual spending

Gan Bonei Hahomot in Jerusalem (photo credit: SHMUEL BAR-AM)
Gan Bonei Hahomot in Jerusalem
(photo credit: SHMUEL BAR-AM)
Thanks to a nearly NIS 800 million infusion of funds from the government for the capital’s annual municipal budget, dramatic increases in spending will be allocated toward improving Jerusalem’s infrastructure this year, Mayor Nir Barkat announced on Tuesday.
As Barkat awaits final approval for his preliminary 2015 budget from the City Council in the coming days, he said his blueprint will feature marked increases in expenditures on neighborhoods, education, culture, sports, services, transportation and economic development.
According to the mayor, the increase in spending was made possible by a NIS 770m. government investment in the capital via the Finance Ministry and Prime Minister’s Office, as well as from self-generated income.
The total municipal budget will increase by 13 percent from 2014, Barkat said.
By the numbers, the mayor said spending on parks and recreation will increase by NIS 143m., to NIS 182m.; sports and leisure spending will increase by NIS 66m., to NIS 72m.; the education budget will increase by NIS 88m. to NIS 178m.; infrastructure and transportation spending will be nearly NIS 1b.; NIS 404m.will go toward youth activities; an additional NIS 60m.will be allocated toward community development; and NIS 1.8b.will be spent on general development, an increase of NIS 500m.
“Every Jerusalem resident will feel how the budget in 2015 will significantly improve their quality of life in the city,” Barkat said in a statement.
“The large budget we raised this year will dramatically improve neighborhoods, the city’s appearance, parks and roads, schools, cultural institutions, transportation, municipal services, assistance to the elderly and needy, and reduce gaps between various sectors in the city for all walks of life.”
Barkat added that the infusion of funds will also be allocated toward creating a number of new festivals in the city to attract visitors.
“I thank the prime minister, the treasury, government ministers and municipal budget division for continuing to build the future of Jerusalem,” he said.