Prefecture (France)

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In France , the prefecture ( French préfecture ) is the administrative district of a prefect , i.e. a department . In addition, the word designates the main town (French chef-lieu ) of a department, its administrative authority and the administrative building that serves as the official seat.

In the French unitary state , the prefecture is subordinate to the Ministry of the Interior in Paris. The chief administrative officer of a department is the prefect (French préfet ). The sub -division below is the arrondissement , which is presided over by a sub-prefecture , if the prefecture itself is not already in the municipality (French commune ). The prefecture of the capital of a region is also the prefecture of that region.

The administrative unit of the prefecture is an institution that was created at the time of the consulate under Napoleon Bonaparte and continues to this day.

Today there are 100 prefectures in France. An exception is the greater Paris area , where the police prefecture for the departments of Paris (serial number 75), Hauts-de-Seine (92), Seine-Saint-Denis (93) and Val-de-Marne (94) is combined. The last three departments mentioned have their capital, which is also called the prefecture:

This can also be seen in the station names of the Métro and the RER : Nanterre-Préfecture (RER A) and Créteil-Préfecture (M8).