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December 9, 2016 / 9 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Netanya’

Interior Ministry Cancels Netanya Municipality’s Award, the Reason: Mayor in Jail

Sunday, September 18th, 2016

The Netanya municipality was scheduled to receive the Interior Ministry’s Proper Financial Management Award, which will be given this Monday in a ceremony at the Jerusalem Convention Center to dozens of local municipalities that have met the ministry’s standards. This years the list includes Yavne, Kiryat Bialik, Kiryat Ata and Hod Hasharon, among many others. But at the last-minute this beautiful, coastal city, a third of the way between Tel Aviv and Haifa, was taken off the list.

Netanya has been an award recipient for the past consecutive four years, and the staff at City Hall told Clacalist they were frankly surprised at the decision to withdraw them from the list. A Calcalist inquiry with the Interior Ministry revealed that the decision came after the arrest of Netanya Mayor Miriam Feirberg Ikar on suspicions of corruption. Israel police arrested Feirberg and several of her colleagues and relatives on September 7, 2016 on charges of bribery, fraud, and abuse of power. Apparently the ministry preferred to err on the side of caution, especially since the current Interior Minster, Aryeh Deri (Shas) has himself served a hefty stint in prison for embezzlement.

The Interior Minister’s Proper Financial Management Award is given once a year to dozens of municipalities in Israel that show proper financial management and responsible behavior on the part of senior officials in local government. The parameters tested include deficits, income, expenses and rates of real estate tax collections. Other areas include proper awarding of bids.

Although it does not spell it out, the rules for the award most likely do not allow for the recipients to be under police investigation.

JNi.Media

Conducting the Netanya Orchestra

Tuesday, September 13th, 2016

The Israel Netanya Kibbutz Orchestra took to the streets on August 25th and let the people conduct the symphonies.

Take a look… and a listen…

Video of the Day

Netanya Mayor Remanded for Another 3 Days

Sunday, September 11th, 2016

Netanya Mayor Miriam Feirberg Ikar on Sunday was remanded to another three days in jail. Feierberg is suspected of receiving bribes and benefits estimated in millions of dollars. Earlier on Sunday the same court extended the remand of the Mayor’ son Tzafrir Feirberg, contractor Avraham T’Shuva, attorney Abraham Gogig and architect Gabi Tetro.

David Israel

Netanya Mayor Remanded for 6 Days on Suspicion of Corruption, Bribes

Wednesday, September 7th, 2016

Netanya Mayor Miriam Feirberg Ikar was in Rishon Lezion Magistrate’s Court Wednesday, along with three other suspects, including a senior official in her administration and a real estate developer, to hear police request for a remand in her investigation on suspicion of corruption.

A representative of the Police told the court that “this is a convoluted and complex investigation involving serious suspicions of public corruption on the highest order,” which is why police were requesting a 10-day remand. In the end the court allowed a 6-day remand for the mayor, her former husband Eli Feierberg, Rabbi Shimon Sher, chairman of the local planning and construction committee, and a developer whose name was not disclosed.

Mayor Feirberg and the other three are suspected of various crimes of accepting bribes. “These are public figures who violated the public’s trust,” the police representative told the court.

During the hearing, Feirberg interfered in her attorney’s comments to the court and the judge stopped her and said, “I understand this situation is uncomfortable for you, but do let your attorney speak, he knows what he’s talking about.” Feirberg shot back, “Why? I only asked to answer all their questions.”

Police suspect high ranking officials in the Netanya municipality and their circles of associates of working to promote the interests of contractors and developers in Netanya real estate projects, in return for bribes and other gifts. These officials are suspected of operating habitually with conflicts of interest without reporting them, with everyone being involved in bribery, fraud, money laundering and tax evasions.

Since the investigation has been revealed, police have seized and frozen accounts and assets to support possible future requests for forfeiture. The investigation is being run in collaboration by the National police Unit and the Income Tax Investigations Unit.

Other suspects, in addition to Mayor Feirberg, are her son, attorney Tzafrir Feirberg, contractor and developer Avraham T’shuva, the brother of natural gas and real estate tycoon Itzhak T’shuva, Attorney Rabbi Avraham Gogig, and architect Gabi Tetro.

David Israel

Police Raid Netanya City Hall, Mayor to Be Questioned

Monday, September 5th, 2016

Netanya Mayor Miriam Feirberg Ikar is expected to be invited for police questioning with a warning, as part of a large-scale investigation of the Netanya municipality which culminated with a raid of city hall Monday morning. A senior source in the police has told Haaretz that the mayor and members of her family may be suspects. Searches in the homes and offices of several suspects as well as offices in Netanya’s city hall building have yielded documents and other content. Three men, including an attorney and a developer have been detained for questioning.

According to an Haaretz investigation, the mayor’s family members have been involved in construction projects associated with members of tycoon Yitzhak Tshuva, the chairman of El-Ad Group which owned the New York Plaza Hotel.

Investigators of the Lahav 433 crime-fighting umbrella organization within the Israel Police along with Income Tax investigators on Monday carried out raids in multiple locations in the coastal city of Netanya. Also on hand were the Prohibition of Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism Authority, and the State Attorney’s Economic Department. A preliminary announcement states that the investigation is based on suspicion that elements involved in construction have promoted their interests illegally with the Netanya municipality, among other things through bribery and while committing tax violations.

Back in 2007 police closed a similar investigation of Mayor Feirberg for lack of sufficient evidence.

Feirberg is the first female mayor elected in Netanya and one of very few women who have served as mayors in Israel. She was first elected in 1998, and again in 2003, 2008 and 2013. She has won a prize for efficient management from the Union of Local Authorities in Israel.

Netanya is one of the most affluent cities in Israel, and has attracted a large population of Russian and French immigrants. The city is considered one of the cleanest in Israel, with a long stretch of sandy beaches. It features of balanced mix of secular, national-religious and Haredi Jews, and is home to a growing Arab population.

JNi.Media

Sanz Hasidism’s Secret Revealed: How Couples Buy a Home for $660 a Month

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

It’s no secret that the Haredi sector in Israel is suffering from a terrible housing shortage which is only getting worse. But according to Walla, at least one Hasidic court has found a solution. Apparently, young newlyweds in Sanz are able to buy apartment in the “periphery” which is Israeli code for not in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Netanya, Haifa or anywhere along the coast, for up to $185,000 without making a significant down payment.

Sources in Sanz are saying the problem is not an apartment shortage but a money shortage: few young Haredi couples are able to come up with the minimum down payment of about $80,000. Which is why at Sanz they launched the Build your Home program that helps every young Sanzer couple buy their own apartment for about $660 a month (2,500 shekels).

The couple would be directed to look for an apartment in T’veria, costing up to 700,000 shekels ($185,000). Each pair of parents must pay in about $6,600, and the Sanz gmach (loan society) kicks in a $93,000 interest free loan, and aids the couple in applying for an $80,000 mortgage from the bank. Since the couples qualify easily under Israel’s system of housing points, they should qualify for a mortgage loan that would pay for the new apartment. The couple only has to pay back about $660 a month — $265 to the gmach and the rest to the bank.

According to Walla, in Sanz about 120 couples get married each year, and there’s a backlog of about 200 new couples. However, according to a source in Sanz, the new program currently has about $14.5 million at its disposal, which should suffice to find housing for many couples. So far they say they’ve found housing in T’veria for about 300 couples.

The upside is, of course, modern housing at a low cost. But Haredi couples are used to living near their parents and close to the religious and educational institutions they grew up with. Moving to a new, remote community, although with many of their movement peers, is the sacrifice they would have to make. Halbershtam said practically all the Haredi movements in Israel are following the Sanz example, he’s being asked to assist Sephardim, Lithuanians, and Hasidim in setting up similar systems. “The housing shortage is like cancer, and we have found the cure,” he said.

About 9,000 Haredi couples get married each year in Israel, and their inability to come up with the down payment for their own home forces them to waste years worth of income on rent, instead of investing this money in acquiring their own place. The new programs, should they proliferate throughout the Haredi population, could liberate all of them. They would also help populate the periphery, expanding and bolstering Jewish settlement across the country.

David Israel

Cisco Laying Off 14,000 Worldwide, 300 at Most in Israel

Wednesday, August 17th, 2016

The San Jose, CA headquartered networking giant Cisco is about to announce the layoffs of as many as 14,000 employees, or about 20% of its global workforce, according to sources close to the company. Early retirement package plans have already been offered to many employees, as Cisco is preparing to publicize its fiscal quarter results Thursday evening. According to Calcalist, the layoffs will include between 200 and 300 Israeli employees.

Cisco Israel, headquartered in Netanya, employs more than 1,500 workers. Last October it let go of 40 employees and over the past three years of about one thousand. At the same time, according to Calcalist, Cisco has also been recruiting new employees in Israel, as well as making acquisitions: Cloudlock for $293 million in June, and Leaba for $320 million in March. Cisco has also signed a cooperation deal with Israel’s largest financial institution, Bank Hapoalim, and announced a new initiative with the Israeli government, turning the Negev into the “world’s first digital region.”

According to CRN, the heavy cuts are the inevitable result of Cisco’s transition from its hardware roots into a software-centric organization. CRN cites a source familiar with Cisco’s transformation that said “they need different skill sets for the software-defined future than they used to have. In theory the addressable market could be higher and the margins richer, but it will take some time to make this transition.”

The notion that a good portion of that future growth will involve Israel’s quality software workforce bodes well for the local hi-tech industry.

David Israel

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/cisco-laying-off-14000-worldwide-300-at-most-in-israel/2016/08/17/

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