Illustration of a tobacco - ROMUALD MEIGNEUX
- This Monday, January 24, the first wave of the “Proximity Payment” operation was launched in ten test departments. It consists in allowing tobacconists to collect local taxes, fines and utility bills.
- The implementation of the system throughout the territory will be completed in July 2020.
- Despite some enthusiastic comments, the majority of readers who responded to our call for testimony expressed concern.
Pay your taxes like you play the lottery. As of this Monday, February 24, it is possible to pay taxes (housing or property), fines and utility bills (hospital, canteen, etc.) in tobacco shops. One way, according to Gérald Darmanin, Minister of Action and Public Accounts, to make this service more accessible. Initially in a test phase in ten departments, this “Proximity payment” operation will extend to the whole of French territory (Overseas included) by next July.
Hailed by tobacconists, criticized by unions in the Directorate General of Public Finance, the initiative divided. 20 Minutes asked its readers for their opinions.
"Tobacconists are open early, late, weekends ... This is a public utility," writes Alain. If not many of the readers who have spoken favor the use of tobacco shops to collect public money, their arguments seem unstoppable. "If it can simplify things, why not? "Explains Guillaume *. He added: "Why should I take half a day off to go to the town hall? Public service hours are not ideal. "
If the argument of schedules is most often cited, that of proximity also comes up. According to Sylvain * "it will limit [our] travel", and for Christophe * "tobacco is everywhere, not like the counters (of the Treasury)". Hervé, however, specifies that he would like to see in the tobacconists "a dedicated room, out of sight and out of ears".
A real privacy issue
And this is one of the main problems raised in the comments received: discretion. "It seems to me that civil servants are bound by professional secrecy, what will it be for tobacconists? Asks Cojaseni. Like her, readers are worried about the information obtained: "I don't want my tobacconist to know the amount of taxes or fines that I pay, because behind, hides my personal situation," explains Nadine. Véronique goes in the same direction: “It is obvious that the cafetier will be aware… like the pillars of the bar. Because beyond the professional behind the counter, many are thinking about what other customers might hear or see. "I don't want the whole village to know," says Liliane.
The fear of leaks is not limited to neighbors. "It goes through a device of the French Games (FDJ), which has just been privatized, it poses a big concern," warns Martin. By anticipating La Poste, the FDJ obtained that the collections go through its terminals (the same as for the Loto, EuroMillions, sports betting ...). “Taxes must be collected by the state for the state. How can we be sure that they will not be diverted? What about our personal data? », Adds Emmanuel. There is also the question of security, knowing that it will be possible to settle debts to the state up to 300 euros in cash. "All tobacco shops are attacked or robbed at night, it's not a safe place," says Gérard.
The abandonment of public service
For internet users, this device is the consequence of the reduction in the public service offer. "It is only to close the offices of the Treasury," laments Pascal *. This argument is based in particular on the planned abolition of thousands of agent posts at the DGFiP by 2022 and on the upcoming closure of several hundred local agencies.
"It will further contribute to the desertification of small towns and villages, judge Hervé, and it is not the tobacconists who will grant you payment terms. This reader then wonders how people, "deep in the countryside, in deep France", will find an agent of the Treasury. Andrée abounds: “The tobacconist will not be able to answer all the questions that some taxpayers will ask themselves. "
Other possible solutions?
Some of the readers of 20 Minutes then suggest alternatives. François offers to look across the Pyrenees: “In Spain, you can pay your local taxes and invoices by scanning them at the ticket machine, with your credit card. "
Like him, Brigitte evokes the “banks” solution. But Maylis would prefer to defer to La Poste. Because according to her, "it's more discreet".
* First names have been changed
Audiovisual license will not disappear with the abolition of the housing tax, according to Franck Riester
Taxation: Taxes and fines will soon be available at the tobacco shop
How does “Proximity Payment” work?
You must first check that your tax notice or invoice includes a QR code and the words "payable to a tobacconist" in the payment terms. Then direction the tobacconist (the list of partner places is on the site impots.gouv.fr/portail/paiement-proximité).
Then, the QR code of the document must be scanned in the terminal of the French games of the tobacco shop. The amount due is displayed on the cash register screen visible to the taxpayer, and on that of the tobacconist (who cannot know what the amount corresponds to). The person then tells him the amount he wants to pay and the method of payment (bank card or cash up to 300 euros).
A receipt can be claimed, but in this case, you must give your name.
- Housing tax
- Property tax