Wednesday, October 8, 2014

What is the City Council?

I've discovered that many people don't really understand what the City Council is -- why it exists, what it does, and how it affects our lives.

From the City of Lakeville web site:
Lakeville City Council Members are elected at-large to represent the entire community and are empowered by law to legislate citywide policy. This includes the authority to pass and enforce ordinances, establish public and administrative policies, create advisory boards and commissions, and manage the City's financial operations including preparing a budget, auditing expenditures, and transacting other City business as required by law. The City Council also serves as the Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA) for the City. The City Council appoints a City Administrator who directs City staff on implementation of Council decisions and providing day-to-day City operations.

There are five people comprising the city council -- this includes the mayor, who votes along with the other four council members. The mayor is elected every two years. Council members are elected to four-year terms, with two of the seats up for election every two years.

One common misconception I've found -- many people think that the City Council oversees schools. This is incorrect -- all business of the school district is overseen by the elected school board. The city council has no direct interaction with the school board.

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