Economy, medical deserts, water, digital, communities: the main problems of Cher, described in detail by the prefect

Cher prefect Maurice Barate sent his wishes to the press on Tuesday. An opportunity to highlight the department’s vision, its strengths and weaknesses, and above all to urge it to move forward by building on its strengths rather than “giving up” or standing still.


“Among the main issues that emerged in 2022 were the direct or indirect consequences or, in any case, the acceleration of the war in Ukraine. There was the perception of the Ukrainian population, which stabilized for a while and continued. There. were also the consequences of a phenomenon that had already begun: inflation. We have seen the trends mentioned by the Ministry of Economy, which may indicate that 2023 will be complicated. This is for sure. In terms of energy, the efforts made by our fellow citizens will continue to count and count.”

There are also consequences for the economy, which we are watching very closely with actors and supporters of the economic world. The government implemented unprecedented measures to support the economy and our compatriots. Whatever the field, we have presented the systems implemented to support small and medium enterprises and very small enterprises, even if some professions feel it more strongly and sooner. All this will keep us busy every day. We will move and evolve it according to the needs throughout the year.”


“Another topic has really struck me, and that is the demography in Cher. For me, this slow erosion is not inevitable. It is important to know the numbers, to try to understand them. But, as I have exchanged with many major players. The territory, no one wants to put up with it. Surrender there is nothing. Nothing can happen. How to act? Apart from saying to yourself: what can we do for our youth to find the right outlet for them, the right sector. here I want to answer two things: let’s help our youth to do what they want. not all sectors are everywhere. the important thing is that a young person who has once matured in his career wants to come back to us, settle down with us. And then, because there is a change in wishes in employment, there is no reason why young people should want to come back to us when they are from somewhere else. r people. There are strengths to emphasize.”

The declining population in Cher, Saint-Doulchard remains the third… What to remember from the latest census figures

Department of France

“The French service structures were finalized in Cher in the previous deployment phase. There are 22 of them in the Department. We have been able to achieve the goal. This map is alive, active. It does not stop in 2023. , we will use all this to improve the functioning of the French services and we’ll pay special attention to their quality. First, not all structures are necessarily for the same category of people. Look how we’ve included less-used features. We’ll make sure to move to the second level, which is maybe video conferencing. Finally, we have partners who want to join them. Probably. we’re going to have a big day with the agents. giving them practice time so they can answer all the questions and talk to each other. a lot of attention, support and kindness for the agents who bring so much to the community.”

Cher’s 22nd French service structure located in Bourges, Gibjoncs district

France 2030

“Bruno Bonnell, Secretary General for Investments in charge of France 2030, recently came to the Cher region. He saw what is being done on innovation in Vierzon with Cetim Centre-Val de Loire, Insa. We are in a territory. We should not be ashamed of what we do. We have leaders – whether it’s business leaders or institute directors, wearing haute du Cher or their institute. I hope we can get other companies to get it.”

Allocations to local authorities

“2022 was exceptional in terms of direct grants with the local investment support grant (DSIL) and the rural equipment grant (DETR). This year is even more exceptional because we have an additional grant for several years, the green fund. .This is either is a donation that can support local authority projects or be added to DETR or DSIL depending on the project. All this with a maximum of 80% assistance. It is a powerful device in terms of ecological transition. Behind it are concrete effects on the operating budgets of municipalities: when you change the lighting, it it’s on the electricity bill. It’s the same thing when you isolate the gymnasium. It also allows for sorting, pitch progress. water… There’s an opportunity there and the public is already very interested in it, the goal is to go quickly so it’s on budget. and communities quickly We hope communities can take over to implement this quickly.

The strong expectations of elected officials from Cher and the students, facing the Minister of Environmental Transition and Territorial Unity


“This is really an asset for the department. Today we are ahead of the regional level. Even outside the region. Other assets: it is not concentrated on one pole and it is already a chain thing. There are training courses, start-ups, approved companies. This is to anchor is a good sign. We will try to increase the advantage together.”

medical deserts

“There is no one solution, but there are many good initiatives, as well as good intentions, and there are models that complement each other and meet the needs. The National Reconstruction Council for Health has put forward proposals that we will discuss with the Regional Health Agency about how they can be rolled out in 2023. “We will see. With my services, I ensure that we can meet the operational side of things and meet expectations as best as possible. Faced with this challenge, we need to work towards a federation, we need to share best practices more.”

Faced with treatment deserts, a group of MPs, including Loic Kervran and Nicolas Sansou, is proposing to regulate the installation of doctors in the area.

water supply

“That’s the main theme for the summer term of 2022. We didn’t do too badly in terms of drinking water distribution, but we saw that we were at the limits. It highlighted that we reached the levels that we did. We don’t know. we had reached the measurements of the streams. We should be aware of this. We were at levels where we did not know how the water level would react. not. only a summer subject. It is an annual topic. It requires constant attention from us, public services and partners.”

Risk of running out of drinking water in Cher ‘no longer theoretical’

“In the summer, biodiversity, environmental protection, is a topic that needs attention, but it means that we have great efforts within our water distribution organization. Years that need to be addressed immediately. There will be a time in a few weeks, in late February or early March, with the participation of all communities and all managers responsible for water distribution. Consider that almost half of the Cher population’s water needs go to nature, which raises questions.

Network interactions

“Many of us want this. We need to act first where it matters most, in villages or villages that are at risk of running out of drinking water in the coming years. It’s not too far away because connectivity is easier, research has been done and funding is ready… This , it allows to have model values ​​and progressions that gradually involve everyone. For me, there is no fixed plan. There are solutions that will be adapted according to the areas.”

Pesticides, nitrates, what is the quality of drinking water in Cher in 2021?

Merger of municipalities, merger of municipalities

“We have a map with 16 public institutions for intermunicipal cooperation (EPCI). I regularly tell elected officials that there are opportunities in this area starting in 2022: 2023 or even 2024, the year of the European elections, national or local are non-election years that have a strong impact on issues. If the opportunities, requests can go further, we will deal with the requests that will be presented carefully and quickly. There is no pressure. But the incentive. We will. help municipalities and EPCIs that will merge. Less than 500 in Cher “We have a number of municipalities with significant populations. When we get to lower numbers, it raises questions about what can be done. This is all an initiative of elected officials. I can only remind them that we will help them. We are there for the council.”

The amalgamation of municipalities, a shy move in Cher compared to other departments of Centre-Val de Loire [carte]

Interview by Valerie Mazerolle

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