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Modai Charges That the Cabinet Secretly Approved a $2.13 Billion Supplement to Current F/y Budget

Minister-Without-Portfolio Yitzhak Modai charged Friday that the Cabinet secretly approved a $2.13 billion supplement to the budget for the current fiscal year while it is locked in debate over the next fiscal year’s budget.

Modai, a former Finance Minister, made his allegation on a television interview. He charged that the 10.5 percent increase in the current budget was unnecessary. According to Modai, the Cabinet could have created a welcome precedent. During the past 10 years, he noted, the government has always been forced to tack on a supplementary budget. This year it could have been avoided, but “we have returned to our bad old ways,” he said.

Modai said the secret vote was taken at the Cabinet meeting devoted to the new economic plan last Monday evening. He said he was not present because Premier Yitzhak Shamir had assured him when he left the session that no further votes were scheduled.