Gov't defers minimum wage bill

Peretz says PM finds strength in crushing the hopes of the poor.

311_ amir peretz (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski/The Jerusalem Post))
311_ amir peretz
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski/The Jerusalem Post))
MK Amir Peretz (Labor) attacked the Netanyahu's government's decision on Sunday to defer the reading of his proposed minimum wage bill, preventing it from going into effect in the next bi-annual budget.
Peretz declared that the decision to defer the reading of the  bill was a sign of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's callousness towards the economically disadvantaged groups in Israeli society.
"Every time that it is necessary to struggle with the disadvantaged segments of the population, Netanyahu finds the strength and ability to crush their hopes," Peretz said.
The government tabled the new minimum wage bill proposed by for a week on Sunday, deciding not move forward with a second and third reading of the bill in the Knesset.
Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz stated earlier in the day that the proposed bill would have increased the government's bi-annual budget for 2011-2012 by five billion shekels.
RELATED:Editorial: Peretz’s populist minimum wage billLow pay is the No. 1 complaint expressed by police officersThe government has approved a negative income tax to help Israel's poor in place of the minimum wage proposal.
"I give me blessing to the finance minister's announcement that the next budget will have a negative income tax that covers the entire country. This is the correct response to working citizens' low salaries," said Netanyahu.
He added, "this measure will encourage businesses in the marketplace instead of the other proposals suggested."