“Afigese chose the main theme of the return of the citizen for his assizes”

The start of the new school year will be marked by a high-risk PLF 2023 and a public finance programming law that should involve local authorities. How will finance, management and territorial evaluation respond to this uncertain context?

This beginning of the school year brings with it a high stake and is marked by uncertainty. The local public sector, like other actors, will have to face contradictory pressures. On the one hand, the skyrocketing energy costs, the increase in interest rates, the increase in wages (the revaluation of the index point by 3.5% but also , especially for the departments, those who benefit from social and medical-social personnel), the announcement. of a new framework of operating expenses… increases that the few measures adopted in the framework of the amending finance law of this summer, compensate only very partially. At the same time, strong social and social expectations, and, in particular, the communities expected on the ecological transition and sustainable investment, for which a support fund of 1.5 billion euros has just been announced by Mrs. Prime minister.

All this with an exhausted taxation, on which the local authorities can act less and less, either because they no longer have the legal capacity to do so, or because the taxpayers, themselves confronted with this inflationary environment, no longer accept the increase of compulsory levies, already very high in France. On the other hand, if the general financial situation of the local public sector is still satisfactory today, it masks many of the most difficult situations of communities that are poorly equipped to deal with this environment. The local authorities should therefore look once more for a way to maneuver and innovate to continue to carry out their missions. Financial, management control and evaluation functions will be in high demand. Many subjects on which Afigese will continue to look and provide its expertise and support, as well as on many other subjects that are also in the news, such as the generalization of the the application of the M57, the deployment of the certification of accounts, the new responsibility of public managers, the green budget and the ecological accounting or the fiscal provisions that do not fail to include the future financial laws.

The Afigese hearings will take place from September 21 to 23 in Rennes. What will the topics and issues be?

His theme will be the return of citizens. This topic seemed important to us, in a context of crisis of representative democracy and the rise of mechanisms of participation and construction of public action. This phenomenon, which has been developing for several years, will emerge stronger from the health crisis of 2020 and 2021 and will change practices in terms of financial management and guidance. It also takes a very particular dimension in the financial context that I mentioned before, raising the question of the priorities of the budget, its financing and the consideration of the constraints at a time when the demand is strong to support the transitions , especially ecological and digital.

This Conference will therefore be at the heart of current concerns, all these subjects will be discussed there. We will therefore have the opportunity to exchange from Wednesday September 21, during the introductory evening, with Jean-Laurent Cassely, author with Jérôme Fourquet of “La France sous nos yeux” (Seuil, 2021) and to attend, Friday September 23 , to a debate promised in the presence of Frank Escoubès, author with Gilles Proriol of “Democracy, otherwise – The art of governing with the citizen” (Editions de l’Observatoire, 2021). We will also be able, during the workshop (budget, taxation, internal and external management control, evaluation, management) or forums, to discuss local democracy and financial issues or ongoing reforms and listen to the always fascinating presentation of Luc Alain Vervisch. (La Banque Postale) and Thomas Rougier (Observatoire des finances locales et de la gestion publique) on the financial situation of the local public sector, which will be of particular interest this year. This Conference will therefore be a highlight of the new school year, not to be missed, since everything that is current in the short, medium and long term for the local authority will be there. We expect a lot from you here!

Afigese has recently adopted a code of ethics. Why did you write such a text?

The association started, about three years ago, a process aimed at providing, in a context of loss of confidence in representative democracy, a Code of Ethics and a charter for private partners. This project, which we carried out with the support of Mr. Samuel Dyens, of Cabinet Goutal et Alibert, aims both to prevent the risk of conflicts of interest and to remember good practices (deportation, etc.) in the management and ‘activities of the association (working groups and relations with the private sector, etc.), and to make even more effective the very useful partnerships forged by Afigese with representatives of the private sector. A Code of Ethics has therefore been drawn up and distributed to members. It recalls the obligations to which public officials are bound (reserve, etc.) and the means of preventing the risk of conflicts of interest, especially for deportation, both in the relations between their local community and the Afigese both with the partners of the association. A Charter also provides that private partners, who are no longer members of the association, are invited to participate in the work of the working groups (or forums during the Assisi), after a call for expression of interest and examination of his contribution proposed by a Commission “Partnerships and ethics”. This set of provisions, which also gave rise to the modification of the statutes, is therefore intended for members and associations, but also for the members of the association’s bodies, now composed only of individual members. It allows Afigese to continue its evolution and development, within a renewed and formalized ethical and deontological framework.

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