New tools and new challenges for sport in 2022

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Jean Damien Lesay for Localtis

In terms of sports policies, it looks like the next year will be one year apart. One figure sums up its unprecedented character: a budget of 987m euros (+22%) included in the finance bill for 2022. Has France realized the importance of sport for the well-being and health of societies? Yes on paper. In reality, the answer should be nuanced.

To support clubs

The historical amount of the upcoming budget is explained above all by the simple effect of the calendar: the Olympic Games in Paris will be held two and a half years later and will require an increase in investment, especially in sports infrastructure. This represents an increase of €62 million in loans allocated to Solideo (Olympic works distribution company) and the organization of the Games.

Another economic factor: the health crisis. Banned from joining their club from spring 2020, the French have been slow to find their way back to stadiums and gymnasiums. And the sports movement felt like a financial vacuum. The government then decided to create a Pass’Sport. Although the back-to-school allowance is aimed at young people aged 6-17 who receive education allowances for children with disabilities or allowances for adults with disabilities, it has not fully achieved its goal. Only half of the planned appropriations were committed by the originally planned deadline. Concerned to encourage the resumption of physical activity and support clubs, the government has decided to expand the system to new audiences, with an additional 100 million euro envelope planned for 2022.

What fund for equipment?

Another line of action to improve the app: build and refurbish equipment. In this context, the government has made a new effort: 192 million euros will be allocated over three years for the construction of 5,000 small local sports facilities. Equipment that will appeal to both supervised training and freestyle training. But like Pass’Sport, this plan is not universal. Underserved regions (QPV and ZRR) are regions that are eligible for funding. Patrick Appéré, president of the National Association of Elected Officials (Andes), responsible for sport, is regrettable in our columns. According to him, “we need the Marshall plan for the local construction of sports facilities”. A plan for all regions will specifically target the replacement of old equipment… and will require a minimum investment of one billion euros. This is much more than, for example, the 50 million Euros received from the Recovery Plan to finance energy regeneration in sports equipment.

Still on the equipment side, the National Sports Agency (ANS) won’t be pretending to be Santa in 2022. The envelope reserved for configuring equipment under construction or refurbishment is just 12m euros for the metropolis. And here are the concerns. again, just missing regions. Another 12 million are still in areas that are insufficient to finance the construction and renovation of swimming pools.

Indeed, to finance sports equipment, local authorities will continue to turn to mechanisms other than ANS in 2022, in particular the local investment support grant (DSIL, €33 million allocated to equipment equipment in 2020) and equipment allocation. for rural areas (DETR, 56 million for sporting goods in 2020). And perhaps to the contributors who will be attending the funders’ conferences a few months from now?

New management, new tools?

These will form the second phase of the “new regional governance of sport” rocket – after regional sports conferences set up in all metropolitan areas throughout 2021. At this stage, the usefulness and effectiveness of the new decentralized bodies of the National Sports Agency will be evaluated, in a joint financial commitment phase around joint projects.

Yet the big unknown of sport in 2022 remains the evolution of health measures. Restrictions on access to equipment continue to penalize clubs and commercial chambers if school practices are not allowed. Two years after the 2024 deadline, the 2017 goal of increasing the number of practitioners by three million seems increasingly difficult.