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The State Does Not Plan To Expand Shabbos Bus Transportation

Responding to the High Court of Justice on the matter, the state on Tuesday, 14 Elul, indicated it does not plan to expand Shabbos bus service more than what exists today – explaining the current status quo is acceptable.

In the petition, the Ministry of Transportation is required to relate to one of the transportation regulations and to initiate, as necessary, reinforcement of the bus lines on the day of rest. The State Prosecutor’s Office stated that from the point of view of the state, there is no intention to act on this matter and to allow the operation of additional lines beyond the current situation.

According to the regulation in question, it is possible that a bus line will receive a license to operate on the Shabbos if it is “essential in the opinion of the Authority, in terms of the existence of public transportation services.” The representative of the state in the discussion argued that the remarks were written mainly regarding lines whose travel time begins shortly before the beginning of the Shabbos and ends shortly after its entry, or whose operation takes place near the end of the Shabbos.

The Ne’emanei Torah V’Avodah organization is calling on the government to accept responsibility rather than pass the issue to the court to render a ruling. “There is no doubt on the one hand that there is a need for public transportation and therefore there is a need for limited service on Shabbos in defined areas. It is most unfortunate the government continue to pass the buck to the High Court instead of making a decision.

Rabbonim of the organization point out that even concerning the opening of stores in Tel Aviv on Shabbos, the court is involved. They call on the government and Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz, to support the Shabbos Law.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

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