Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Settlements are sucking the State and citizens dry?!

Translated from the original Hebrew.

The whole truth about "money for settlements" and where did they hide the money for my settlement?

The Budget is skewed because of the settlements. Known. The Israeli government spends billions on the territories. Known. In general, it is known that settlers have more fun.

Every time offer I hear "turn off the faucet to the settlers," My soul collapses and my settler eyebrows rise: Where is that money?

I'm holding the monthly bill for the community where I live. Every month I pay 2500 shekel to rent a trailer lined cardboard and tin roof. I repeat: 2500 shekels. To finance municipal services I pay the same property tax rate prevailing in Israel, per meter. For me that comes to 3048 shekels a year = for a caravan. Including, incidentally, one of the highest sewer fee rates, something not paid in many areas. And then there are special taxes, collected only from settlers : local community settlement tax - 250 shekels a month; security tax - 160 shekels a month.

I would be happy to stop with these details, but when they talk about "money to the settlers", that require some explanation and expansion.

To finance the building of the synagogue, we pay 150 shekels a month (payment obligatory, beyond any private contributions to the synagogue). All community event we pay full price. Rates for day care, kindergartens are established by the Ministry of Industry and identical to what paid by parents in the rest of the country. Private services are more expensive, because of a lack of competition. To support the weak members in the community and to avoid them becoming a burden on the welfare authorities, we have a special obligatory charity funds , and other gamachs. All our needy don't rely on the state.

It's many years already where there are no tax breaks for those who live in Judea and Samaria. For over a decade there is no budget allocated to development and infrastructure for settlements. And the myth of the soldiers guarding our gates? Irrelevant for years: We pay a security company and do or own reserve duty at night (1 night of the month, a full day once every three months).

Building lots are developed by contractors, and price accordingly. There are no housing grants, no location loans. Nothing. A month ago my settlement offered a plot for construction at 450 thousand shekels. Contractor built homes with 4 rooms (3 bedrooms) are sold for nearly one million shekels. And I have not said a word about the huge sums that the settler has to pay for fuel. If you tell me we're hiding money, I'd love to know where.

Peace Now "found and discovered two billion shekels from the state budget allocated to the settlers' villas". And this became two billion fabrications of the truth where Israel is pouring its budget into the pockets of a delusional cult of the hilltop grabbers! A closer examination reveals their creativity in creating this forgery, and how they got such a nice round sum.

Well to start with the state spent NIS 800 million on the Security Wall and Fence - the Left's idea mind you, intended to protect the center of the country (including those settler remaining on the inside of the fence). An additional 240 million was allocated for coordination activities in the territories. Do you know what that is? It's a budget for assistance to the Palestinians. 240 million shekels went to finance the Disengagement plan. Indeed, that's something that the settlers wanted very much and enjoyed.

100 million was invested in the Old City of Jerusalem. 255 million went to upgrading the road to the Dead Sea - improving road to the hotels. If pools of mud and tourists in bikinis are settlers - I had better update some of my friends.

172 million went for the Housing Ministry tenders in Maale Adumim and Har Homa - ignoring the fact that this is Jerusalem and not isolated settlements, I would remind you that auctions are money that comes back: This is marketing money comes back as profit to the state.

Let's continue. NIS 180 million to connect the northern neighborhoods of Jerusalem to the entrance to the city - no bearded settler were observed in the region. 10 million shekels for the bulletproofing of buses - you got me there, this is in fact is blatant discrimination and a perk for the settlers. And finally: 11 million shekels compensation for losses following boycotts of exporters.

Ahem. Maybe Peace Now would like to explain how come there is a boycott of Israeli exporters in the world.

Read it again, no transfers of money to the settlers, no illegal funding.

The amounts that are invested in the West Bank are designed to provide for the minimal necessities of life. They are no different from investing in any other region in the state, and lesser national priority areas and development towns. The middle class of the settlements bear the burden of taxes and military service, and run the same Sisyphean rat race to get an apartment. 40 thousand settlers living in caravans - housing shortages associated with the cost of living no less than it is related to building freeze. The debts we accept with love. Our civil rights should be equal to all other Israeli. no less. One of the rights, I hope is that we shouldn't be slandered with lies.

Emily Amrosi

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Anonymous said...

Great article, Joe.
Please provide link to the original Hebrew version.

Thanks !

JoeSettler said...

The original letter in Hebrew.

Shalom Achshav's "discovery"

Anonymous said...

You really should add a question mark at the end of your headline.

Anonymous said...

Please use this information in response to an article in Ha'aretz which blasphemes the settlers... Maybe this should be offered as a rebuttal editorial. It is great.

JoeSettler said...

Please post the link there to the article that slanders us. I'm not familiar with which specific article you mean, as they write so many with that theme.

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