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Historic of the General Councils and departments
Some historical dates of general councils
The General Council has existed for over two hundred years and has adapted toward the new missions which have been confided to them. The idea which gave birth to the General Councils is of the egality of all citizens. Each individuel has the right of access to the same services and to benefit of the same rights.
- 1789- Creation of the departments, direct heritage of the revolution..
- Created in 1789, the departments at that time, were endowed with a departmental council. After consultation this assembly chooses a president and a permanent executive board of directors. France is then separated into 83 different departments organized so that the seat of government is accessible no longer than one day of horseride to the limit of departmental territory.
- 1800- The organization is altered, the General Council appears.In each department a prefect is appointed, also a prefects council and a general council. Only the Prefect holds the power of executive leaving to the general council the role of a deliberatiog assembly.
- 1871 The department which is an administrative constituency of the State, becomes a territorial collectivity by the law of August 10th. The departmental commission is created. This commission assures the permanance of the departmental assembly and controls the prefectoral administration, but the Prefect remains the departmental executive on the general council.
- 1982- The law for decentaralsation of March 2nd 1982, transfers the exercise of departmental power of the prefect to the President of the general council. This law recognizes the general council as executive of its assignments. Since this date, the department is administered by two different bodies : a deliberating body (the departmental assembly) and an executive body (the President of the general council). The competencies of the general council have grown and most are new. They concern everyday life and the citizens.
France accounts actually for 100 departments, 96 in the metropol and 4 overseas, the DOM ( Guadaloupe, Guyane, Martinique and the Reunion) and 2 territorial collectivitie with a special status the TOM ( Mayotte and Saint Pierre et Miquelon).
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