After the anger of the farmers, the State and the communities pass the bills to each other for the damage

After the time of anger, demonstrations and blockades comes that of damage assessments. And bills to pay, or not. A few weeks after the agricultural crisis, which manifested itself in multitudes of actions throughout the country, mainly on the highways – a fairly unprecedented mode of action –, who will pay the bill, sometimes hefty?

The starting point of this movement was in Toulouse on January 16. That day, 1,000 demonstrators and around 400 tractors paraded through the streets, unloading manure in the city center or on the ring road. The next day, the municipality filed a complaint against X. It estimated the damage and cleaning costs at 90,000 euros, according to the mayor, Jean-Luc Moudenc (various right). Two months later, it is the only major community to have taken legal action. Prefectures, municipalities, departments and the State are passing the buck to find out who will pay the bills, which would amount to several million euros.

In Agen, the mayor, Jean Dionis du Séjour (MoDem), after several days of action by the Rural Coordination troops, quickly gave up. “We will pay for the damage, which amounts to more than 400,000 euros, with help from the State”he said at the end of January.

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The situation is not the same in Auch, where new actions took place on February 21. “The city is still in discussions with the State to determine the distribution of the cost”, indicates the communications service. The cumulative amount of damage since the end of January would reach several hundred thousand euros. Who will pay the bill? Christian Laprébende, the socialist mayor of Auch, does not hide his annoyance and responds ” not knowing “. Same response from the prefect of Gers, Laurent Carrié. “I don’t know who pays!” We take care of a lot of things, but cleaning public roads is not the responsibility of the State”he says, in an article published on March 12 in La Dépêche du Midi.

“The departments are in no way responsible”

Same situation in the department of Haute-Vienne and in Troyes, in Aube. François Baroin, mayor (Les Républicains) of Troyes and former minister of the economy, estimated at the beginning of February, In The Flash East, that “the bill is between 300,000 and 400,000 euros. The best thing is for the State to cover the bill, through a fund at its disposal”insisting on the clemency of the Minister of the Interior towards the demonstrators: “Since the State is letting this happen, let it assume the bill until the end. » The socialist Stéphane Destruhaut, vice-president of Haute-Vienne, is of the same opinion: “We consider that the departments in general are in no way responsible for the cause of this conflict and, therefore, for us, it would be logical that the costs are incurred by the State”he declared on RMCat the beginning of February.

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