towards the opening of a fiscal project

The support of the local authorities in their policy to fight against the artificialization of the territory raises the question of a tax review. A site that the Minister of Ecological Transition says is ready to open.

What is bad for the environment must, in the end, cost more than what is good for it. We undoubtedly have a global reflection on taxation to do said Christophe Bchu, before the members of the law commission of the National Assembly, on September 13.

I’ll give you just one example: it’s nice to make a ground floor that asks how you can rebuild the ground that is already artificial. But perhaps the question of looking at how we increase the cost of artificialization could also facilitate the equation suggested Christophe Bchu, anxious to save public finances.

For the government, the tax reform appears, in fact, as an interesting path to support local authorities in the implementation of the objective of zero net artificialization (ZAN) 2050 enshrined in the Climate and Resilience Law. Such a reform could be a way to put a soft pedal to the direct aid established through the Wasteland Recycling Fund, which the Minister also announced will be joined in a Green Fund endowed with 1.5 billion euros.

Towards the end of the artificialization of public subsidies

The opening of a discussion on these subjects is welcomed by the specialist in environmental taxation Guillaume Sainteny. This statement goes, in my opinion, in the right direction, reacts the professor at the polytechnic school. There are many possible reforms that are not very difficult to implement in this area, either by differentiating the same taxes according to location, or by eliminating or reducing many of the many public subsidies for land acquisition that exist. In November 2020, Mr. Sainteny denounced the abolition by the government of the payment for the density submitted, which would counter the changes made simultaneously to the development tax to combat artificialization.

There are many possible and not very difficult reforms in this area

Guillaume Sainteny, lecturer at the Ecole Polytechnique

The reception is much more reserved on the part of the planners. If there is an increase in production prices, including taxation, the last person to pay, that is to say the consumer, will have to be able to pay. At a time when interest rates are rising, when cost prices are rising, I do not know what buyers do, especially if the price of land also rises. reacts Michel Rieussec, president of the National Union of Developers (Unam). That the question of artificialization is integrated from the angle of taxation, why not, he tries But it would also be necessary to include the mistreatment or destruction of lands, not only urban ones. he adds, throwing a stone in the field of intensive agriculture.

Request the local tax model

On the part of the local authorities, the opening of a discussion on local taxation is well perceived, while they suffer from the abolition of the housing tax and the contribution to the added value of companies (CVAE). The comparative value of assets between land in extension and opportunities in densification raises many questions about the value chain. Historically, local taxation is based on the stock of goods, whether housing or economic buildings, and the growth of our income has been correlated with the growth of this heritage. Although ZAN does not mean zero new construction, as densification is also an opportunity, this strongly questions the model. explains Sbastien Miossec, Vice-President of the Intermunicipality of France.

There should be no ZAN tax, because it does not contribute to the serenity of our future debates however, warn Alain Chrtien, vice-president of the Association of the Merchants of France (AMF). For us, the development tax is undoubtedly the most effective tax vehicle for financing the Wasteland Fund that would be raised at the national level. supports the representative of the AMF, who also questions the effectiveness of the tax exemption regimes.

Recover part of the proceeds from the sale of carbon quotas

The opening of this tax bill could also be based on the work of the Senate. This collected the complaints of the local authorities through a consultation on the ZAN object. Its Finance Committee also published an information report on financial instruments to achieve the ZAN objective. According to its author, Senator LR Jean-Baptiste Blanc, this goal it has not yet found its economic model .

The land pressure plays against the natural and agricultural land, which cannot provide the same yield as the urbanized land. In addition, it is generally less expensive to build new housing, especially single-family houses, than to rebuild “the city on the city”. relieved the senator. Although some current budgetary and fiscal mechanisms are moving in the right direction, such as the Brownfields Fund, the latter calls for the urgent definition of a budgetary and fiscal financing model. In order to give local actors a real incentive to act in the direction of the sobriety of the territory, the budget and fiscal aid must be redirected mainly, but not exclusively, towards the operations that tend to the sobriety of the land (rehabilitation, renovation, demolition-reconstruction) and not towards urban. extension, especially when this leads to urban expansion urges the speaker.

Among the possible resources to finance the ZAN, the senator suggests recovering part of the proceeds from the sale of carbon quotas. While part of this product is allocated to the National Housing Agency (Anah), the surplus that goes to the State budget has benefited from the unexpected effect of the increase in the price of coal, that climate policies should make sustainable. , explains the senator. In 2022, the share allocated to Anah is estimated at 420 million euros, which will benefit the State at 962 million.

The opening, next September 28, of the debate on the finance project for 2023, as well as the ecological planning project, launched by Lisabeth Borne, are the opportunity to get to the heart of the matter .

Article published on September 16, 2022

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