Budget: standoff in sight on the state of health of local communities

Posted Oct 2, 2022, 6:13 PMUpdated Oct 3, 2022, 3:07 PM

The debates on the financial health of local authorities risk turning into a rat race during the examination in Parliament of the finance bill (PLF) for 2023. The executive will be able to rely on a note of the General Directorate of Public Finances according to which “the provisional accounting data suggest that the year 2022 will end without any significant difficulty”. “In total, the work carried out during the summer budget review and updated with the latest known figures suggests a situation at the end of 2022 that is still favorable for local authorities”, write the services of Bercy in this document revealed this week. -end by “Le Parisien” and obtained by “Les Echos”.

At the end of August, the sector’s total gross savings – one of the most scrutinized indicators for assessing the situation of local finances – was down, but “remained at a high level, higher than that of 2019, considered a good year “. This self-financing capacity amounted two months ago to 16.2 billion euros, against 17.5 billion a year earlier but 14.8 billion in August 2019. According to the State services, “the strong momentum of VAT paid at the end of the year should support it”, but without preventing it from falling overall. While the expenses of the communities are impacted by inflation, it would be, according to them, “in proportions which remain contained”.

For next year, it is reported “favorable fiscal outlook […] which would make it possible to cope, for the vast majority [des collectivités, NDLR], to the context of inflation anticipated in the context of the PLF 2023”. According to this note, “the uncertainties are thus limited for the municipal block and are concentrated, in terms of cash flow, on less than 500 municipalities” and around fifty intermunicipalities.

Emergency Energy Shield

“There is some intox. We can hear the little music that seeks to impose itself, but I have never seen such a level of alert among mayors, who manage their finances in a healthy way and take a tsunami of inflation. We are leaving for two or three years of difficulty, ”objects David Lisnard, mayor (LR) of Cannes and president of the Association of Mayors of France (AMF).

In a letter sent Friday to the Prime Minister, Elisabeth Borne, nine associations of elected officials, including the AMF, Urban France or Intermunicipalities of France, asked “the creation of an emergency energy shield capping the purchase price of community electricity. The government is going to have an additional 210 million euros introduced into the PLF by way of amendment to the overall operating grant (DGF), which will thus see its overall envelope increase for the first time in thirteen years. A measure, however, far from satisfying the associations of elected officials, who, like the AMF, are calling for the indexation of the DGF to inflation.

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