JERUSALEM (Jan. 15)
The Jewish Agency plenary session opened a discussion today on the 1963-1964 budget draft which is based on an estimate that immigration to Israel will continue on the same substantial scale as during the prior year. The budget is expected to be slightly higher than the current year’s 370, 000, 000 pounds ($123,333,333).
The discussion centered on the financial difficulties which were being encountered by the Agency and the possibilities of cutting expenditures because of accumulating debts. It was reported that at a meeting of the Government-Jewish Agency coordinating committee today, Agency representatives planned to press for a larger governmental share in settlement projects and for a reduction in the Agency’s financial participation in providing immigrant housing.
Another topic understood to be on the agenda for the coordinating committee meeting today is a planned special fund-raising campaign for higher education in Israel to narrow the gap between primary and secondary education. The plan evoked some opposition among United Jewish Appeal leaders on their most recent mission to Israel.
Proposed by Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion, the plan envisages a limited campaign embracing small circles of big donors but UJA leaders indicated they felt such an effort might clash with UJA fund-raising and they proposed to keep it within the general framework of UJA campaigns. A special subcommittee was expected to be set up to review this matter.
The plenary also discussed today the question of creation of a Jewish education council decided on at the World Conference on Jewish Education held in Jerusalem last August. Representatives of the organizations which took part in the conference will meet in New York City in March to discuss the budget and other details to implement decisions taken at the Jerusalem parley, including the establishment of central offices.