Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu racked up an expenses bill of NIS 2.1 million ($541,886) during a visit to the United Nations in New York City last year, a fact his office tried to prevent the public from learning.
Among the prime minister’s expenses was $1,600 for hair styling and $1,750 for makeup. The biggest expense on the bill was the NIS 1.5 million ($386,992) flight. A total of NIS 625,000 ($161,344) was spent while actually in New York.
A detailed summary of the prime minister’s expenses during the September 29-October 4, 2015 trip was prepared by the Foreign Ministry, the Israeli consulate in New York, and the Israeli mission to the UN, the latter of which apparently had to pick up the mammoth bill.
The expenses report was ready in January, but for months the Prime Minister’s Office and the Foreign Ministry — both under Netanyahu’s control — tried prevent its release.
But the details of the report were released Tuesday due to the efforts of Ramat Gan lawyer Ben Meir, according to Hebrew daily Haaretz.
Among other pricey items was a bill of $20,000 for removing furniture from the prime minister’s hotel room, perhaps to accommodate his guests. The actual moving cost was $3,500, with another $16,000 billed for storing the items.
A copy of the Israeli daily newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth cost the couple $60.60, while their meals came to a total of $1,860. Laundry services for the two cost another $210. There was also “a special cleaning fee” of $6,900, which ended up being deleted from the record for an unknown reason.
The trip’s costs did not include the separate expenses of Sara Netanyahu, whom police recently recommended stand trial for wasting public funds in the couple’s residence.