Hundreds of directors of Torah institutions throughout the
country have yet to receive approval by the registrar of non-
profit organizations regarding proper management of their
institutions. As a result, the Religious Affairs Ministry and
other Government offices have yet to transfer the financial
support that they are entitled to by law.
Many institution directors have recently complained to
Yated Ne'eman, noting that the outside accountants
appointed by the Non Profit Organization (NPO) registrar are
proceeding at an inordinately slow pace, thus preventing the
institutions from receiving the proper management
certification that is now required to proceed with the
transfer of funds to these institutions.
In addition, offices of the NPO registrar and its staff do
not respond to requests by heads of the NPOs to receive
certification. In many cases, certification has even been
issued, but the registrar's office does not transfer the
documents to the Religious Affairs Ministry or to the various
other Government offices.
Most of the institutions involved are kollelim that
are subsidized by the Religious Affairs Ministry only.
Last year the Government decided that any NPO which lacks a
proper management certification from the NPO registrar cannot
receive Governmental support. Because of the newness of the
directive, the NPO registrar was unable to personally review
all of the records, so he assigned the job to various
accountants throughout the country.
Most of these accountants -- who generally have other, more
profitable ventures --- put off doing the work but in the
meantime the Government offices received orders to stop
support of institutions lacking proper management
certificates. May 15th was the deadline. As a result, support
of many NPOs with spotless records was stopped simply because
the statements had yet to be issued.
Yated Ne'eman was told that the Religious Affairs
Ministry has held up the subsidies of hundreds of NPOs,
yeshivas and Torah institutions that still lack these
certificates, although the audits indicate no problems with
Responsibility for the fiasco is placed upon the NPO
registrar, Amiram Bogat. In the meantime, the financial
distress of these institutions is worsening. Many
kollelim support hundreds of avreichim.
Last week, the Vaad Roshei Hakollelim demanded that the State
Comptroller take all steps necessary to ensure the
continuation of the support of the kollelim. "An NPO
with the required certificate must be considered deserving of
support and if the NPO registrar cannot cope with the job of
examining the records, the institutions and NPOs are surely
not to blame," they wrote in their letter, copies of which
were sent to the NPO registrar, the Religious Affairs
Ministry, the Finance Ministry and to MKs Rabbi Ravitz and
Vaad Roshei Hakollelim demands that the State Comptroller
intervene in the issue and instruct the Government ministries
to support the NPOs until the NPO registrar manages to
overcome his problems. "Temporary approvals should be given
to NPOs whose records are still in the process of being
examined. Since the NPOs meet all the requirements they are
entitled to approval and continuation of their ongoing
support. The registrar's problems do not justify holding up
the transfer of these approval statements."
So far no response has been received from the NPO