Knesset committee unanimously approved: salaries of Knesset members will be frozen in 2021

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by Ifi Reporter Category:Politics Nov 9, 2020

On Monday, the Knesset committee unanimously approved the bill initiated by the committee's chairman, MK Eitan Ginzburg (blue and white), according to which the salaries of Knesset members will be frozen in 2021. The purpose of the bill is to prevent the salary of Knesset members from being updated by approx. NIS 5,000 gross per month.
The Knesset will save about NIS 6 million as a result of the freezing of the salaries of the incumbent MKs, when this amount does not include the expected savings due to the freezing of the update on the benefits of former Knesset members.
Knesset Member Haim Avidor said that the meaning of the bill is that if the average wage in the economy increases in 2021, then the MKs will receive in January 2022 only the salary update for 2021 and will not receive back the frozen update for 2020. Conversely, if in 2022 The average wage in the economy has fallen below its level in 2020, so the wages of MKs will not decrease.
The salaries of Knesset members are linked to the average salary in the economy and are updated once a year in the January salary, in accordance with the increase in the average salary in the economy in the past year. In January 2021, an estimated jump of 11% of the average wage in the economy is expected compared to 2020, due to the dismissal and expulsion of 700,000 people, most of them low-wage workers.
 The Knesset committee's decision regarding the salaries of Knesset members does not affect the salaries of other officials: the president, the prime minister, ministers, their deputies, judges, rabbis, cadets and more. The Finance Committee, headed by MK Moshe Gafni, is in charge of the salaries of the other officials and will be required to cut their salaries and freeze them.
Ginzburg agreed with Gafni that after the bill to freeze the salaries of MKs is passed in the first reading, the Finance Committee will convene in order to make a decision to freeze the salaries of other officials.
However, Blue and White is currently delaying the promotion of the bill to freeze the salaries of MKs, prime ministers, ministers, their deputies, as well as the president and judges, as well as the bill to cut by 10% by the end of 2021 in the salaries of these office holders. Blue and White justifies the opposition by saying that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Likud are delaying a series of reforms in the ministries headed by representatives of the White and Blue, including Communications Minister Yoaz Handel, who is trying to promote the deployment of fiber.
It should be noted that on normal days the Knesset Committee can decide without legislation on a reduction in the salaries of Knesset members or on a freeze on their salaries, but for this purpose it must consult the Public Committee on Knesset Members' Salaries - such a committee has not yet been established.
MK Elazar Stern (Yesh Atid-Telam) said at the hearing that a bill submitted by MKs Yair Lapid and Idan Roll should be enacted, which would prevent Knesset members from influencing their salaries, given the fact that Knesset members are currently the last authority to decide on their salaries. And they can reverse the recommendations of the Public Committee.Bills on the matter submitted in the current term and in previous terms have fallen due to opposition from Knesset members.

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