The Connexion 247 - May 2023 e-Paper | Subscribers can find their copy in My Account

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The Connexion 247 - May 2023 e-Paper | Subscribers can find their copy in My Account
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What's inside this month's edition

On the front page

No fines in 2023, says property form chief
Fines will not be issued this year for failing to complete the obligatory new biens immobiliers residential property declaration on time, the head of the service has told The Connexion

Foreign licence swaps set to end as penalties ease for minor speeding
Drivers who flout the speed limit by less than 5km/h will no longer have points deducted from licences under new rules starting on January 1, 2024

French news explained

Mayor bans Sunday afternoon hunting to make walkers safer
A mayor who has banned hunting on Sunday afternoons in his area believes a nationwide ban is possible

Alert over low quality of French residency service
France's Defender of Rights has raised an alert over ‘the degradation of the fundamental rights of foreign people’ in relation to residency issues

‘Do it yourself’ campsites offer cheap holidays
Campsites run by the campers themselves are growing in popularity, and it is not all about the savings

‘AI makes pension debate irrelevant and will reorder key jobs’
It makes no sense to raise the pension age, with AI set to replace many jobs, says scientist

Dog-tor Snoopy will see you now... hospital’s new helper
An English setter rescue dog is working as a stress-relieving dog at one of the world’s top cancer hospitals in Paris

We prefer no phone masts in our unspoilt valley – and no signal
Villagers in a small Alpine commune have fought off plans to install a 4G mobile phone mast in a mountain beauty spot, saying they prefer to stay disconnected rather than change the unspoilt countryside

EU delays its new Entry/Exit border system to next year
THE EU’S new Entry/Exit (EES) electronic system of registering arrivals and departures of non-EU citizens is now expected to be delayed until next year

Crit’Air car system ‘a bad idea’
A public consultation into France’s ‘ZFE’ low emission driving zones has been launched by the Senate

Drivers challenge UK firm’s right to access French data
More French residents have reported receiving fines of thousands of euros for driving in London’s Low and Ultra Low Emission Zones (LEZ and ULEZ) – but doubts remain about how authorities accessed their contact data

Senator proposes law change to improve fibre optic rollout
A senator's proposal to change the law over how fibre optic cables are connected to homes has upset operators

American in Paris protests over undeclared Swiss bank account
An American retiree has been staging a protest over an ‘undeclared Swiss bank account’ by standing in front of the French senate for more than 350 hours

Hundreds of mayors quit due to ‘Covid and increased workload'
Forty mayors resign every month in France, a minister has revealed, blaming the impact of the pandemic at the time of the most recent local elections in 2020

Returnable glass beer and wine bottles are making a comeback
Reusable glass bottles are experiencing a renaissance as inflation pushes up the cost of raw materials

Rural homes energy exemption ‘illogical’
Exempting character stone homes and those made with other traditional materials from new EU proposals to improve energy efficiency would “not make sense”, says the MEP in charge of the plans

Pesticides in water ‘not a health risk’
The widespread presence of a banned pesticide recently found in French tap water does not pose a health risk, the government has said

Port of Marseille on trial over pollution from cruise ships
The Port of Marseille is conducting a project to measure its impact on air quality in the city

Practical advice and updates for living in France

Making sense of septic tanks
Septic tanks are an unavoidable part of life in many areas of rural France - we look at the rules

Boost for homeowners selling solar power
Producing your own solar power has become more attractive due to changes to installation grants in France

Home pool still adds value despite droughts
Swimming pools continue to be a sound investment, despite their installation being banned in some parts of France due to water shortages

Homeowners advised how best to prepare for energy ratings
A leaflet has been made available to explain how homeowners can prepare for the property energy ratings

Avoid tax return errors by understanding the system
Looming tax return deadlines mean income tax is on many people’s minds in May, so it seems timely to cover how it works and what expatriates need to know

Our financial writer answers your money queries on page 33

You can find more information on managing your money in France in our Money and Tax section on pages 33 and 34, and online 

Readers' questions answered

  • What is being done about dentist shortages?
  • What help is there to rent electric car?
  • What happens if you sell your house after receiving eco-renovation grants?
  • Do you need to clean out containers before recycling?
  • Is it necessary to have a French bank account if you own a second home in France?

French living

The view from here
French parliament's first ever wheelchair using on how French attitudes to disability is changing

Centre yourself in the wine-making, historical heart of the Hexagon
We explore the central department of Cher, where visitors can step back in time in the medieval city of Bourges, mess about in boats, or sample some world-famous wine

‘The more we travelled, the more I realised she was coming back to life’
We talk to Fiona Lauriol, who took her centenarian grandmother out of the nursing home in which she was deteriorating to go on an unforgettable road trip through Spain in a camper van

Three garden gems to visit in May: Vienne, Mayenne and Loire-Atlantique
This month sees many fine gardens welcoming visitors. We explore three absolute beauties throwing their gates open to visitors

More in the May edition

Environment: Postal workers’ bikes given a second life
Society: Towns offer free app to boost social links for over-55s
Food and drink: ‘Beer is consumed a bit like malt whisky here, often as an apéritif ’
Career change: Our success soon had others beating a path to our door
Language: Other people are key to real progress in French – so be brave and have a go