3 Feb 2005

French Polynesia town halls barred from role in passport renewals

9:26 am on 3 February 2005

A report from French Polynesia says the highest administrative court in France, the Conseil d'Etat, has revoked a law which gives town halls a role in renewing and applying for French passports.

The Tahitipresse news agency reports a state decree in 2001 permitted French citizens in overseas territories to drop off their passports at the town hall for renewal.

But the Conseil d'Etat has cancelled that decree, saying, in effect, that the work of the French State can't be partially delegated to local authorities.

However, the Papeete French State office that handles French passport applications and renewals said it hadn't been informed of the Paris court's ruling.

And none of French Polynesia's communes has so far contacted the French High Commissioner's Office in Papeete to discuss the consequences of the court's ruling.