Knesset to Debate Budget Thursday

The Knesset plenum will hold its first debate on the 2009-2010 budget and the Economic Arrangements Law on Thursday, starting early in the morning and probably going on until late at night. This is indeed the most likely scenario for now, but it could change based on an agreement - or lack thereof - between the coalition and opposition on the subjects at hand.

The special session on Thursday, which is normally a day when the Knesset does not meet, will cost taxpayers tens of thousands in overtime salaries for Knesset employees, hotel rooms for MKs and, of course, expenses such as electricity.

The budget will have to be presented to the Knesset tomorrow, by law, in order to be brought to the floor 48 hours later, on Thursday. However, the cabinet can ask the Knesset House Committee for special dispensation and move the debate and vote up to Wednesday. The committee will discuss this matter and the protocol for the budget debate, and vote today.