Jerusalem’s city government is alleging that an affordable housing project in the Ramot neighborhood violates government policy, because Israel’s haredi-controlled Housing and Construction Ministry has, along with Israel's Lands Administration, cooked the project’s books in favor of haredim.
Jerusalem Accuses Haredi-Controlled Housing Ministry Of Skewing New Affordable Housing In Favor Of Haredim
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
Jerusalem’s city government is reportedly alleging that an affordable housing project in the Ramot neighborhood violates government policy, because Israel’s haredi-controlled Housing and Construction Ministry has, along with Israel's Lands Administration, cooked the project’s books in favor of haredim.
The project was supposed to include 128 rental units and 166 apartments to be built in Ramot’s largely secular Country complex.
But the project’s criteria allegedly overlook the needs of middle class and working families and contradict the Trajtenberg Committee’s recommendations for affordable housing. Those recommndations were approved by the government.
The City of Jerusalem is also alleging that the Housing and Construction Ministry violated a commitment to coordinate the project’s tender with it.
The Housing Ministry and the Israel Lands Administration rejected the city’s allegations.
"The tenders in Ramot and Pisgat Ze'ev are intended for all Jerusalem's population groups, particularly young couples eligible for Mehir Lemishtaken [affordable housing]. All tenders were published following extensive meetings with Jerusalem city hall elected officials and professionals. The meetings were summarized in writing. The attempt to present a 1,200-home tender as political opportunism makes the accuser look bad," a Housing and Construction Ministry spokesperson told Ha’aretz.
The city demanded that the land tender be scrapped.
The Country complex is planned for 734 total housing units, along with a country club, sports facilities, and a pool. The city wants it to be an attractive site for young couples, because it is close to Hebrew University, the Har Hotzvim industrial complex, and a newer industrial complex located near the city’s northern entrance.
The city also wants to designate some of the homes for career soldiers in accordance with what is supposed to be government policy.
More than half of Ramot’s current population is haredi.