Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

27 Ellul 5760 - September 27, 2000 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly








Produced and housed by
Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network











Home and Family
High Court Judges Criticize Property Tax Discounts Given to Avreichim
by Betzalel Kahn

During recent deliberations, three High Court judges broadly hinted to rulings they are about to issue in a number of weeks regarding an appeal filed by the Left objecting to criteria granting property tax discounts to large families. The appellants claim that current criteria are discriminatory.

Judges Mishael Cheshin, Yitzchak Zamir and Dorit Beinish deliberated on the appeal filed by the Am Chofshi NPO headed by Yossi Paritzki from Shinui and Arnon Yekutieli, a member of the Jerusalem Municipal Council.

According to Yekutieli, 60% of the chareidi families in Jerusalem receive discounts of 80%-90% and the chareidim, who constitute 30% of the city's population, contribute only 9.5% of its total income from arnona.

The judges criticized these criteria and expressed their personal opinion in respect to those criteria which have been determined by the Internal Affairs Ministry. The regulations determine that those receiving income subsidies from the Religious Affairs Ministry also receive reductions in property tax if they are avreichim occupied with full- time Torah study. According to current regulations, the reduction in property tax may be up to 70%; the Jerusalem Municipality currently grants this reduction. The appellants claim that according to regulations, income from National Insurance children's allotments for the fourth child and up are not taken into account in determining the discounts and, as a result, many chareidi families receive a property tax reduction to which they are not really entitled.

Justice Zamir said that this constitutes discrimination between avreichim and university students. In reference to the assertion by Judge Mishael Cheshin that the original purpose of this regulation was to encourage large families, he responded, "What does garbage collection and street cleaning have to do with the encouragement of birth?"

By divulging their opinions on this issue, the judges have more than hinted as to how they will rule on this appeal. The decision will be issued in a few weeks.


All material on this site is copyrighted and its use is restricted.
Click here for conditions of use.