Economic development company to be revived after 14 years

After a break of 14 years, the Ra'anana city council has approved the revival of its Economic Development Company to oversee projects planned in the city, reports The move will bring the city into line with neighboring Kfar Saba and Herzliya, each of which have functioning development companies, but was criticized by councilor Meli Polishook-Bloch, who said the NIS 50,000 it would take to set up the company had not been allowed for in the 2009 budget, approved just one month ago. According to the report, the council last week voted to renew the company, which was active between 1990 and 1995 and then ceased operating for unstated reasons. The report said the new company would contain 15 members - five city councilors, five public representatives, and five municipal employees - and one of its first tasks would be to examine the "Kikar Ha'ir" project, which aims to turn a large car park in the city center into a main plaza. City treasurer Amir Bartov said it would cost about NIS 50,000 to set up the company afresh, a sum which had not been allowed for in the recently approved municipal budget. Polishook-Bloch objected to the creation of the company. "It is irresponsible that this subject was not in the budget book," she said.