the Senate adopts the “emergency” bill in support of purchasing power

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The Senate adopted on Friday, with modifications, in first reading the “purchasing power” bill, adopted last Friday in the National Assembly.

The Senate with a right-wing majority adopted Friday, July 29 at first reading, after having amended it, the “emergency” bill in support of purchasing power, the first part of the package of measures to deal with the inflation which has crossed the 6% mark.

The text was adopted by a show of hands, thanks in particular to the votes of the LR, centrist and RDPI groups with the En Marche majority, after two days of generally serene debates, contrasting with the chaotic discussion which prevailed in the National Assembly.

From Monday, the senators will embark on the amending budget (PLFR) for 2022, the hypothesis of a tax on “superprofits”, carried in particular by the centrists, risking to strain the debates.

The same day, the deputies and senators will meet in a joint committee to try to agree on a common version of the purchasing power bill, the government expecting a final adoption of the two texts no later than August 7.

Inflation record

“Things are not written in advance”, warned Philippe Mouiller (LR), supposed that the Senate would have “red lines”.

The first text is calibrated at 20.7 billion by Bruno Le Maire, the second opens 44 billion euros in credits, including 9.7 to finance the 100% renationalization of EDF.

“Inflation remains our number one concern. But we anticipate a drop” in 2023, declared the Minister of Economy Bruno Le Maire after the Council of Ministers, while INSEE published a report on Friday. first estimate for July of the consumer price index (+6.1% on one after +5.8% in June).

>> To read: “Purchasing power: in a tense climate, French deputies adopt the second part of measures”

The Senate has given, with the support of the government, a boost to traders. It adopted an amendment by former minister Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne (RDPI) to cap the increase in commercial rents for SMEs at 3.5% for one year.

Senators previously approved the “rent shield” for individuals which also provides for a 3.5% cap from July 2022 to June 2023.

The Senate voted to continue until December 31, 2023 the “Macron bonus”, with a ceiling raised to 3,000 euros or 6,000 euros in the event of a profit-sharing agreement. But it reserved only for companies with less than 50 employees the perpetuation, from 2024, of a premium exempt from social security contributions.

“Valuing work”

Despite a lively debate on the revaluation of the RSA, it also recorded a 4% increase in retirement pensions and several allowances (family, social minima) with retroactive effect from 1uh July 2022, as well as the deconjugalization of the disabled adult allowance (AAH).

To “enhance work”, the senators have also created a reduction in employer contributions, for overtime, provided for the possibility of early release of employee savings and relaxed the rules for the use of meal vouchers.

On the energy side, several senators stressed the need to better “anticipate”. “Let’s be attentive to our decisions, the energy transition is no longer understood by our fellow citizens”, warned René-Paul Savary (LR), at the moment, he said, when Emmanuel Macron made “soft eyes to the prince to inherit Saudi Mohammed bin Salman for “importing his oil”.

“Acceleration of the energy transition”

The Minister for Energy Transition Agnès Pannier-Runacher mentioned for the October parliamentary “back to school” the bill “accelerating the energy transition”, mentioned for several weeks to simplify the development of renewable, wind and solar energies. . “A priori the Senate would be the first” to the examiner, she slipped.

Via an amendment by the socialist Franck Montaugé, the senators limited the duration of the exceptional measures for the supply of gas to France to two years instead of five, against the will of the government.

They also voted for an amendment by the leader of senators LR Bruno Retailleau asking the government for a report “aiming to put in place”, via a smart box, a voluntary and remunerated device for reducing electricity consumption for individuals.

Environmental groups and CRCE with a communist majority voted against the text, which according to Fabien Gay (CRCE) can “be summed up by the word avoidance”, in particular “so that the salary increase does not come on the table”.

The Socialists abstained “to tell the French ‘you can count on us to defend you'”, said their leader Patrick Kanner.

“We must vote responsibly”, pleaded the centrist Jean-Pierre Moga, for whom “supporting our most modest fellow citizens is a necessity as much as an imperative”.

With AFP


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