Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Magic Number is Eleven

This is the closest I could come to 11 from my numbers archive!
This is an election year for all the communes in France. I've linked to a Wikipedia entry about communes if you're interested in their history and how they govern, but I'll tell you that they are the lowest level of government in France with no real equivalent in the United States. My tiny village of Cadrieu is a commune; so is Paris! my village there must be 11 elected council members to govern the commune. Elections are held every 6 years and every time the village holds its collective breath. Will there be enough candidates on the official 'list' for election day? If not, Cadrieu will be absorbed into Cajarc and lose its political identity forever. Up until last week, it wasn't clear if anyone would step forward and stand for the 5 vacant positions. But I'm happy to report that the list has been filled and Cadrieu has once again dodged the bullet of political anonymity. What's even better is that half the new recruits are young. (i.e. under retirement age!) That means that Yannick and Didier will be joined by Raoul, Bertrand and Jacques' son whose name I can't remember, as the young blood on the council. What they lack in experience, they make up for in energy. And by working with older members they are gaining valuable experience for running the village in the future.

Jacques has agreed to take on the role of Mayor. This is always a touchy subject. While it's not an official rule, tradition has it that the Mayor must be 'from the village' or born here. Outsiders/newcomers are welcome to sit on the council, but the Mayor must be 'old village'. If he or she can trace their family back a few generations here and is a farmer, it's even better.

So, it looks like the formal vote the end of March is just a formality for Cadrieu. We know who will win, and we actually know all the candidates...they're our neighbors! I love local politics, don't you??

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