Israel Committee on Social Policy to Release Its Final Findings

Trajtenberg Committee on socioeconomic change was named by PM Netanyahu following the largest wave of social protest in Israel's history.

Following weeks of deliberation, and in the wake of a massive wave of social protest, the committee named by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to release its final report concerning Israel's socioeconomic policy on Monday

According to initial leaks of the Trajtenberg Committee's report made public earlier this month, the panel intends to recommend cutting Israel’s defense budget by up to three billion shekels in order to fund its other recommendations regarding socioeconomic reforms.

Netanyahu, Trajtenberg
Haim Tzach

According to reports, the committee plans on raising the taxes of the upper class and middle class in order to fund the various social endeavors it recommends. Among the recommendations is compulsory education for all four-year-old children and above, widening negative income tax in order to prevent poverty in two-salary homes.

Moreover, the leaked report stated that the committee recommended that the government advocate for rent-controlled apartments for middle-class families making up to NIS 15,000 a month.

Representatives in the committee refused to confirm the report, and said that some of the reported recommendations are in the official report and are currently being formulated. One of the committee’s advisers said: “This is not even close to the real thing.”

Writing in the panel's blog on Sunday, committee chairman Prof. Manuel Trajtenberg presented a section of the final report's introduction, in which he admits the panel "had not been able to answer most of the issues."

The panel's recommendations will be presented to be government for authorization in late October or early November, but not before the Finance Ministry is expected to attempt to revise or forestall at least some of the recommendations over their expected costs.

The Trajtenberg Committee was formed following a massive wave of social protest, the largest in Israel's history, which highlighted the high cost of living in Israel.