Regions of France
France is divided into 18 administrative regions, including 13 metropolitan regions and 5 overseas regions. The current legal concept of region was adopted in 1982, the term région was officially created by the Law of Decentralisation, which gave regions their legal status. The first direct elections for representatives took place on 16 March 1986. In 2016, the number of regions was reduced from 27 to 18 through amalgamation, in 2014, the French parliament passed a law reducing the number of metropolitan regions from 22 to 13 with effect from 1 January 2016. However, the region of Upper and Lower Normandy is simply called Normandy. Permanent names were to be proposed by the new regional councils by 1 July 2016, the legislation defining the new regions allowed the Centre region to officially change its name to Centre-Val de Loire with effect from January 2015. Two regions, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes and Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, opted to retain their interim names, between 1982 and 2015, there were 22 regions in Metropolitan France.
Before 2011, there were four regions, in 2011 Mayotte became the fifth. Regions lack separate legislative authority and therefore cannot write their own statutory law and they levy their own taxes and, in return, receive a decreasing part of their budget from the central government, which gives them a portion of the taxes it levies. They have considerable budgets managed by a council made up of representatives voted into office in regional elections. A regions primary responsibility is to build and furnish high schools, in March 2004, the French central government unveiled a controversial plan to transfer regulation of certain categories of non-teaching school staff to the regional authorities. Critics of this plan contended that tax revenue was insufficient to pay for the costs. In addition, regions have considerable power over infrastructural spending, e. g. education, public transit and research. This has meant that the heads of regions such as Île-de-France or Rhône-Alpes can be high-profile positions.
Number of regions controlled by each coalition since 1986, Overseas region is a recent designation, given to the overseas departments that have similar powers to those of the regions of metropolitan France. Radio France Internationale in English Overseas regions Ministère de lOutre-Mer some explanations about the past and current developments of DOMs and TOMs
Departments of France
In the administrative divisions of France, the department is one of the three levels of government below the national level, between the administrative regions and the commune. There are 96 departments in metropolitan France and 5 overseas departments, each department is administered by an elected body called a departmental council. From 1800 to April 2015, they were called general councils, the departments were created in 1791 as a rational replacement of Ancien Régime provinces with a view to strengthen national unity, the title department is used to mean a part of a larger whole. Almost all of them were named after geographical features rather than after historical or cultural territories which could have their own loyalties. The earliest known suggestion of it is from 1764 in the writings of dArgenson and they have inspired similar divisions in many countries, some of them former French colonies. Most French departments are assigned a number, the Official Geographical Code. Some overseas departments have a three-digit number, the number is used, for example, in the postal code, and was until recently used for all vehicle registration plates.
For example, inhabitants of Loiret might refer to their department as the 45 and this reform project has since been abandoned. The first French territorial departments were proposed in 1665 by Marc-René dArgenson to serve as administrative areas purely for the Ponts et Chaussées infrastructure administration, before the French Revolution, France gained territory gradually through the annexation of a mosaic of independent entities. By the close of the Ancien Régime, it was organised into provinces, during the period of the Revolution, these were dissolved, partly in order to weaken old loyalties. Their boundaries served two purposes, Boundaries were chosen to break up Frances historical regions in an attempt to erase cultural differences, Boundaries were set so that every settlement in the country was within a days ride of the capital of the department. This was a security measure, intended to keep the national territory under close control. This measure was directly inspired by the Great Terror, during which the government had lost control of rural areas far from any centre of government.
The old nomenclature was carefully avoided in naming the new departments, most were named after an areas principal river or other physical features. Even Paris was in the department of Seine, the number of departments, initially 83, was increased to 130 by 1809 with the territorial gains of the Republic and of the First French Empire. Following Napoleons defeats in 1814-1815, the Congress of Vienna returned France to its pre-war size, in 1860, France acquired the County of Nice and Savoy, which led to the creation of three new departments. Two were added from the new Savoyard territory, while the department of Alpes-Maritimes was created from Nice, the 89 departments were given numbers based on their alphabetical order. The department of Bas-Rhin and parts of Meurthe, Moselle and Haut-Rhin were ceded to the German Empire in 1871, following Frances defeat in the Franco-Prussian War
Aix-en-Provence, or simply Aix, is a city-commune in the south of France, about 30 km north of Marseille. It is in the region of Provence-Alpes-Côte dAzur, in the department of Bouches-du-Rhône, the population of Aix numbers approximately 143,000. Its inhabitants are called Aixois or, less commonly, Aix was founded in 123 BC by the Roman consul Sextius Calvinus, who gave his name to its springs, following the destruction of the nearby Gallic oppidum at Entremont. In the 4th century AD it became the metropolis of Narbonensis Secunda and it was occupied by the Visigoths in 477. In the succeeding century, the town was plundered by the Franks and Lombards. Aix passed to the crown of France with the rest of Provence in 1487, and in 1501 Louis XII established there the parliament of Provence, in the 17th and 18th centuries, the town was the seat of the Intendance of Provence. Current archeological excavations in the Ville des Tours, a suburb of Aix, have unearthed the remains of a Roman amphitheatre.
The city slopes gently north to south and the Montagne Sainte-Victoire can easily be seen to the east. Aixs position in the south of France gives it a warm climate and it has an average January temperature of 5 °C and a July average of 23 °C. It has an average of 300 days of sunshine and only 91 days of rain, while it is partially protected from the Mistral, Aix still occasionally experiences the cooler and gusty conditions it brings. Unlike most of France which has a climate, Aix-en-Provence has a Mediterranean climate. The Cours Mirabeau is a thoroughfare, planted with double rows of plane-trees, bordered by fine houses. It follows the line of the old city wall and divides the town into two sections. The new town extends to the south and west, the old town, with its narrow, along this avenue, which is lined on one side with banks and on the other with cafés, is the Deux Garçons, the most famous brasserie in Aix. Built in 1792, it has been frequented by the likes of Paul Cézanne, Émile Zola, the Cathedral of the Holy Saviour is situated to the north in the medieval part of Aix.
The archbishops palace and a Romanesque cloister adjoin the cathedral on its south side, the Archbishopric of Aix is now shared with Arles. Among its other public institutions, Aix has the second most important Appeal Court outside of Paris, the Hôtel de Ville, a building in the classical style of the middle of the 17th century, looks onto a picturesque square. It contains some fine woodwork and tapestries, at its side rises a handsome clock-tower erected in 1510
France, officially the French Republic, is a country with territory in western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The European, or metropolitan, area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, Overseas France include French Guiana on the South American continent and several island territories in the Atlantic and Indian oceans. France spans 643,801 square kilometres and had a population of almost 67 million people as of January 2017. It is a unitary republic with the capital in Paris. Other major urban centres include Marseille, Lille, Toulouse, during the Iron Age, what is now metropolitan France was inhabited by the Gauls, a Celtic people. The area was annexed in 51 BC by Rome, which held Gaul until 486, France emerged as a major European power in the Late Middle Ages, with its victory in the Hundred Years War strengthening state-building and political centralisation. During the Renaissance, French culture flourished and a colonial empire was established.
The 16th century was dominated by civil wars between Catholics and Protestants. France became Europes dominant cultural and military power under Louis XIV, in the 19th century Napoleon took power and established the First French Empire, whose subsequent Napoleonic Wars shaped the course of continental Europe. Following the collapse of the Empire, France endured a succession of governments culminating with the establishment of the French Third Republic in 1870. Following liberation in 1944, a Fourth Republic was established and dissolved in the course of the Algerian War, the Fifth Republic, led by Charles de Gaulle, was formed in 1958 and remains to this day. Algeria and nearly all the colonies became independent in the 1960s with minimal controversy and typically retained close economic. France has long been a centre of art, science. It hosts Europes fourth-largest number of cultural UNESCO World Heritage Sites and receives around 83 million foreign tourists annually, France is a developed country with the worlds sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth-largest by purchasing power parity.
In terms of household wealth, it ranks fourth in the world. France performs well in international rankings of education, health care, life expectancy, France remains a great power in the world, being one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council with the power to veto and an official nuclear-weapon state. It is a member state of the European Union and the Eurozone. It is a member of the Group of 7, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the World Trade Organization, originally applied to the whole Frankish Empire, the name France comes from the Latin Francia, or country of the Franks
Aubagne is a French commune in the Bouches-du-Rhône department in the Provence-Alpes-Côte dAzur region of southern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Aubagnais or Aubagnaises, the commune has been awarded three flowers by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom. Aubagne is located in the Huveaune valley and surrounded by the ranges of Garlaban with Sainte-Baume to the north. Aubagne is the city of the Agglomeration community of Pays dAubagne et de lEtoile. It is the producer of Santon figurines and hosts many cultural events each year. The French Foreign Legion has its headquarters in Aubagne, public transport has been free at the point of use since the year 2000. Access to the commune is by the A50 autoroute from Marseille which continues south to Toulon, the A501 and A52 autoroutes branch off the A50 in the commune and merge to go north to Aix-en-Provence. There are several towns and villages in the commune apart from the main town, Les Arnauds, Les Grands Mellets, Pinchon, La Martelle, LAgrie, La Coueste, La Thuiliere.
The Huveaune river flows through the commune from the east flowing west into the Mediterranean sea at Prado beach in the 8th Arrondissement in Marseilles, regional trains link the Gare dAubagne railway station with Marseille and Toulon. Aubagne was the first commune in France to be surrounded by autoroutes, the A50 autoroute Marseille-Toulon, the A52 autoroute to Aubagne-Aix-en-Provence. From 2009, Aubagne made bus travel zero-fare, a 14-kilometre, two-line tram network is planned. This project is criticized as it is not common for a city of that size, Line 1 will be from the station to Le Charrel and Line 2 will be from the station to La Penne-sur-Huveaune. Construction started in 2012 for an opening of the first phase in 2014, the tram is a long-term project to be linked with the Marseille tramway. The tram will be zero-fare, making it one of the first zero-fare trams in the world with Tallinn, the death of Queen Joanna I of Naples began a conflict of succession as to who would become the head of the County of Provence.
The Union of Aix, a confederation of cities in the region of Provence, supported Charles, Duke of Durazzo, rather than Louis I, by the spring of 1382 the Lord of Aubagne, François des Baux, supported the Duke of Anjou. This support was conditional upon the Duke helping to restore the queen to her throne, in return, Philippe de Lévis would be surety for Viscount Raymond of Turenne for the agreement between Odon de Villars, his wife Alix, and himself. If Odon and Alix failed to respect the terms of the agreement, between 1965 and 2014, Aubagne has elected three Communist mayors, the municipal council is composed mainly of communist and other left-leaning members. Still, a significant portion of the population centre, right-of-centre
Aurons is a French commune in the Bouches-du-Rhône department in the Provence-Alpes-Côte dAzur region of southern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Auronais or Auronaises, the commune has been awarded one flower by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom. Aurons is located in the heart of the Massif des Costes mountains some 6 km north-east of Salon-de-Provence, access to the commune is by the D16 road from Salon-de-Provence which passes through the centre of the commune north of the village and continues north-east to Alleins. Access to the village is by the D68 road from Pélissanne in the south passes through the village. Route No.8 of the Libébus network serves the commune, large forests cover much of the commune but with some farming activity in the north and south. Tributaries of the Vabre rise in the north of the commune, other streams rise in the east of the commune and flows south. Climate data below is for the station at Salon-de-Provence,6 km to the south-west.
From the 12th to the 15th century the priory of Saint-Pierre de Canon belonged to the Abbey of Saint-André Villeneuve-lès-Avignon, arimondus of Auronis, was Lord of Aurons. He was descended from an old family of knights that participated in the Pélissanne campaign in the 12th and 13th centuries and he was the son of Hugues de Auronis, the co-lord of Aurons, and had property in Pélissanne where he owned Montmajour Abbey. Aimondus had a son, Pierre de Auronis, alias Luperiis, the death of Queen Joanna I of Naples created a crisis of succession for the County of Provence with the cities of the Union of Aix supporting Charles de Duras against Louis I of Anjou. The Lord of Aurons, rallied to the Angevins in 1385 after the death of Louis I, a Revolutionary Surveillance Committee was established in Aurons in 1793. It could not recruit the members required by the decree of the National Convention and has several simple peasants. This institution was a mark of the height of democracy of the Revolution, illiterate members took part in the debates and in turn occupied the post of president.
The committee, who were in charge of monitoring the implementation of laws and making lists of suspects, list of Successive Mayors In 2010 the commune had 361 inhabitants. The evolution of the number of inhabitants is known from the censuses conducted in the commune since 1793. From the 21st century, a census of communes with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held five years