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September 2, 2021 3:21 pm
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Knesset Gives Preliminary Approval to Israel’s First Budget in Three Years

avatar by i24 News

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett chats with Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, following the vote for the new coalition at the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, in Jerusalem June 13, 2021. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun

i24 News – Israel’s new government took an important step on Thursday to passing the first state budget in more than three years after the Knesset (Israel Parliament) gave preliminary approval by a vote of 59 to 53.

The Knesset plenum voted in favor of the budget hours after the Finance Ministry and Health Ministry reached a deal to add one billion shekels ($311,696,500) to the healthcare system on top of the billion shekels agreed to earlier.

“I’ve been in this chamber for many years, and I can’t remember a period like this. The budget is a priorities list of the government, and this deliberation symbolizes more than anything the end of this crazy period and the return to normality. This is proof that this government functions and the coalition works,” said Finance Minister Avidgor Liberman.

The last state budget was passed in March of 2018.

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Following Thursday’s vote in the Knesset plenum, the bill goes into committee before the final two votes needed to pass the bill into law by the November 4 deadline in order to keep the new government intact.

Earlier this month the cabinet approved the spending plan covering 2021 and 2022.

“In good time, there is a budget in Israel. After three years of stagnation, Israel returns to work,” Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said after the cabinet vote.

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