Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s annual net salary is about $150,500, but his net earnings are $54,000, or about $4,500 per month, according to pay stubs released by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
Last month, Netanyahu paid about $5,540 to income tax, $680 to National Insurance Institute and $530 for health insurance.
About $3,200 are deducted from his monthly wages for car expenses. The PMO explained that the reason for this is that he uses an expensive, armored car that was selected by the ISA (Israel Security Agency, or Shabak), and not by Netanyahu himself.
Netanyahu also pays about $50 a month for the use of three telephones, one of which is a mobile phone. However, he reportedly does not use a mobile phone for personal purposes at all.
According to the stub, Netanyahu receives $340 for meals during work hours. The stub says he works 42.5 hours a week, but in actuality he works much longer hours.
Despite Netanyahu's low salary, leftists have often accused him of lavish spending, and have sometimes also blamed his wife, Sarah, for wasteful financial decisions.
In 2013, demonstrators in Jerusalem held up a mask of Netanyahu and threw pistachio-flavored ice cream on it, a reference to a revelation that Netanyahu’s staff had allocated an annual budget of 9,714 shekels for ice cream for the Netanyahu family, causing public outrage.
"Netanyahu is completely disconnected from the way ordinary people in the country live. This evening we will call him to come out of the bed he purchased for half a million shekels and look at the citizens of Israel straight in the eyes,” they added, in a reference to a double bed that was installed on the jet that took him and Sarah to Britain for Margaret Thatcher's funeral.
The Diplomacy and Security Cabinet approved in September the construction of a new Prime Minister's Residence in Jerusalem's Givat Ram at the cost of over $160 million. In addition, Israel will purchase a plane for use by the prime minister and president on flights abroad, at a cost of $100 million.
The residence was planned by the offices of Ada Carmi-Melamed and the late Ram Carmi.
The original plans for the residence called for a luxurious and ostentatious structure which was mocked by many who saw them as either spaceship-like or resembling a cross section of human female anatomy.