Neither an austerity budget, nor the return of whatever it takes. For the seventh draft finance law (PLF) of the Macron era, presented on Wednesday, the government decided to take a narrow ridge line. Halfway between an obligation to take control of public finances, while the debt exceeds 3,000 billion euros, and the necessary support for consumers in a context where inflation on fuel and food prices is decelerating to a senator's train.
A "at the same time" whose majority is customary – also constrained by environmental objectives – and which worries Brussels, while the macroeconomic projections – growth of 1.4% next year – on which the government bases itself "lack credibility", according to Pierre Moscovici, president of the High Council for Public Finance.
See alsoBudget 2024: the government aims for 16 billion euros in savings
Thus, 430 million euros have been budgeted to finance the fuel allowance of 100 euros. This will be paid in 2024 to the most modest French people who use their car to get to work and who will request it. This fuel aid will be accompanied by a second boost. An amendment carried by Mathieu Lefèvre, Renaissance MP for Val-de-Marne, and supported by the government, plans to improve the tax advantage available to employees on their expenses.
While these are exempt from income tax, CSG and social contributions up to 500 euros per year, including a maximum of 200 euros for fuel, the parliamentarian proposes to increase the limit to 700 euros per year, including 400 euros for fuel costs. "The work must pay, justifies the deputy. It is a measure of social justice. »
The penalty threshold for heavy vehicles increased
In addition, if the State increases its budget to help the French to buy a clean vehicle, or to acquire it by leasing, it also hardens the conditions of access to favor modest households and the most virtuous vehicles. Details will be known at a later date. At the same time, the penalties applied to vehicles that are too heavy or emit too much CO2 are tightened. Thus, the threshold for payment of the tax will now be triggered from 1.6 tonnes, instead of 1.8 tonnes currently.
In transport, the 2024 budget plans to finance, without further details, the Rail Pass which should allow travel, for about 49 euros per month, on the entire TER network. On the other hand, for motorists and air passengers, tolls and ticket prices could increase. The government plans to tax transport infrastructure at 4.6%. The objective is to recover 600 million euros per year.
The 1 euro meal maintained for scholarship students
Other bad news, if the zero-interest loan granted to modest first-time buyers is extended until 2027, it is refocused on collective housing and tense areas. However, in Le Parisien, Bruno Le Maire proposed to revise the scale to allow more "young households" to access it. On the other hand, no trace in the PLF of the reduction from 71% to 50% of the tax allowance for furnished tourist rentals enjoyed by Airbnb, mentioned by the Minister of the Economy. The measure should be included by amendment.
To fight against student precariousness, the meal at 1 euro is maintained in 2024 for scholarship holders, while the price for other students is maintained at 3.30 euros. As for students in vocational high schools, their internships will now be paid and paid by the State to the tune of 467 million euros.
Medical transport in the viewfinder
This balancing act, between maintaining purchasing power and budgetary rigour, is reflected in the Social Security Financing Bill (PLFSS). It must be said that social spending represents 50% of public spending. And that the deficit of the Social Security for next year is estimated at 11.2 billion euros.
Among the cost-saving measures, patients who use medical transport (ambulance or taxi conventionné) will be invited to share a vehicle with another patient. In case of refusal without valid medical reason, they will have to make the advance of expenses and will only be reimbursed on the basis of the price of shared transport.
The government is also stepping up the fight against fraud. Thus, a doctor mandated by the employer to supervise an employee on sick leave may suspend the payment of compensation if he considers the termination unjustified. The text also provides for limiting to three days the duration of stops prescribed by teleconsultation, except in the case of the attending physician. Finally, reusable periodic protection will be reimbursed for women under 26 and beneficiaries of complementary solidarity health, while free condoms for all insured persons under 26 will be engraved in the law.
As for daily allowances or the increase in the deductible on medicines, the subjects are referred back to the social partners or parliamentarians.