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Encyclopedia > Local government in the United States
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Local government in the United States (sometimes referred to as municipal government) is generally structured in accordance with the laws of the various individual states. Typically each state has at least two separate tiers: counties (known in Louisiana as parishes and as boroughs in Alaska), and municipalities. In turn there are several different types of municipal government, generally reflecting the needs of different levels of population densities; although the types and nature of these municipal entities varies from state to state, typical examples include the city, town, and village. Many rural areas and even some suburban areas of many states have no municipal government below the county level. Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      The United States has a federal government, with elected officials at federal (national), state and local... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures (List) State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      United States presidential elections determine who serves as president and vice president of the United... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      Midterm elections are elections in the United States in which members of Congress, state legislatures, and... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      This list of political parties in the United States contains past and present political parties in... The Democratic Party is one of two major contemporary political parties in the United States; the other being the Republican Party. ... The Republican Party is one of two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with the Democratic Party. ... This article or section is not written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article. ... A state government is the government of a subnational entity in nation-states with federal forms of government, which shares political power with the federal government or national government. ... Local governments are administrative offices of an area smaller than a state or province. ... Current party control of Governors offices (2006). ... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      In the United States of America, a state legislature is a generic term referring to the... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures (List) State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      All United States states are required to possess a legislative branch. ... In the U.S., a state court has jurisdiction over disputes which occur in a state. ... Information on politics by country is available for every country, including both de jure and de facto independent states, inhabited dependent territories, as well as areas of special sovereignty. ... A municipality is an administrative entity composed of a clearly defined territory and its population and commonly referring to a city, town, or village, or a small grouping of them. ... A U.S. state is any one of the 50 states which have membership of the federation known as the United States of America (USA or U.S.). The separate state governments and the U.S. federal government share sovereignty. ... United States of America, showing states, divided into counties. ... Official language(s) de jure: none de facto: English & French Capital Baton Rouge Largest city Baton Rouge [1] Area  Ranked 31st  - Total 51,885 sq mi (134,382 km²)  - Width 130 miles (210 km)  - Length 379 miles (610 km)  - % water 16  - Latitude 29°N to 33°N  - Longitude 89°W... The U.S. state of Louisiana is divided into 64 parishes in the same way that 48 of the other states of the United States are divided into counties (Alaska is divided into boroughs and census areas). ... Map of Alaska boroughs and census areas The U.S. state of Alaska does not have counties in the sense of counties in the rest of the country. ... Official language(s) English Capital Juneau Largest city Anchorage Area  Ranked 1st  - Total 663,267 sq mi (1,717,855 km²)  - Width 808 miles (1,300 km)  - Length 1,479 miles (2,380 km)  - % water 13. ... Look up city, City in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Ronda, Spain Main street in Bastrop, Texas, a small town A town is a community of people ranging from a few hundred to several thousands, although it may be applied loosely even to huge metropolitan areas. ... Masouleh village, Gilan Province, Iran. ...


In addition to the above, there are also often local or regional special districts that exist for specific purposes, such as to provide fire protection, sewer service, transit service or to manage water resources. In many states, school districts manage the schools. Such special purpose districts often encompass areas in multiple municipalities. A special-purpose district, also known as a special district, is a type of district differing from general-purpose districts like municipalities, counties, etc. ... It has been suggested that Firefighter Assist and Search Team be merged into this article or section. ... A sewer is an artificial conduit or system of conduits used to remove sewage (human liquid waste) and to provide drainage. ... Skytrain Bangkok. ... Impact of a drop of water creating circular capillary waves. ... School districts are a form of special-purpose district in the United States (amongst some other places) which serves to operate the local public primary and secondary schools. ...


Finally, in some places the different tiers are merged together, for example as a consolidated city-county. In American local government, a consolidated city-county, metropolitan municipality or regional municipality is a city and county that have been merged into one jurisdiction. ...

Contents

Types of local government

Since the Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution makes local government for the most part a matter of state rather than federal law, the states are free to adopt a wide variety of systems of local government. Nonetheless, the United States Census Bureau, which conducts the Census of Governments every five years, groups local governments in the United States into the following five categories:.[1] The Bill of Rights in the National Archives Amendment X (the Tenth Amendment) of the United States Constitution, which is part of the Bill of Rights, was ratified on December 15, 1791. ... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties Libertarian Party State & Local government Governors Legislatures (List) State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      A U.S. state is any one of the fifty subnational entities of... The United States Census Bureau (officially Bureau of the Census as defined in Title ) is a part of the United States Department of Commerce. ...


County governments

County governments are organized local governments authorized in state constitutions and statutes and established to provide general government in an area generally defined as a first-tier geographic division of a state. The category includes those governments designated as boroughs in Alaska, as parishes in Louisiana, and as counties in other states. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article may require cleanup. ...


Subcounty general purpose governments

This category includes municipal and township governments. Municipal and township governments are distinguished primarily by the historical circumstances surrounding their formation.


Municipal governments

Municipal governments are organized local governments authorized in state constitutions and statutes and established to provide general government for a defined area, generally corresponding to a population center rather than one of a set of areas into which a county is divided. The category includes those governments designated as cities, boroughs (except in Alaska), towns (except in the six New England states, Minnesota, New York, and Wisconsin), and villages. This concept corresponds generally to the "incorporated places" that are recognized in Census Bureau reporting of population and housing statistics, subject to an important qualification—the count of municipal governments excludes places that are currently governmentally inactive. A municipality is an administrative entity composed of a clearly defined territory and its population and commonly referring to a city, town, or village, or a small grouping of them. ... Look up city, City in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Ronda, Spain Main street in Bastrop, Texas, a small town A town is a community of people ranging from a few hundred to several thousands, although it may be applied loosely even to huge metropolitan areas. ... // The word village has many meanings relating to local government in the United States. ... The word borough has many meanings relating to local government in the United States. ... A Municipal Corporation is a legal defintion for a local governing body, including (but not necessarily limited to) cities, counties, and towns. ...


Township governments

Main articles: Civil township and New England town

Township governments are organized local governments authorized in state constitutions and statutes and established to provide general government for a defined area, generally corresponding to one of a set of areas into which a county is divided. The category includes those governments designated as towns in Connecticut, Maine (including organized plantations), Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire (including organized locations), New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Wisconsin, and townships in other states that have them. Depending on state law and local circumstance, a township may or may not be incorporated. A civil township is a widely-used unit of local government in the United States, subordinate to a county. ... The system of local government in use in New England is very different from that found throughout the rest of the United States. ...


School district governments

Main article: School district

School districts are organized local entities providing public elementary, secondary, and/or higher education which, under state law, have sufficient administrative and fiscal autonomy to qualify as separate governments. The category excludes dependent public school systems of county, municipal, township, or state governments (e.g., school divisions). School districts are a form of special-purpose district in the United States (amongst some other places) which serves to operate the local public primary and secondary schools. ... A school division is a geographic division of the U.S. state of Virginia over which a school board has jurisdiction. ...


Special district governments

Main article: Special-purpose district

Special districts are all organized local entities other than the four categories listed above, authorized by state law to provide only one or a limited number of designated functions, and with sufficient administrative and fiscal autonomy to qualify as separate governments; known by a variety of titles, including districts, authorities, boards, commissions, etc., as specified in the enabling state legislation. A special district may serve areas of multiple states if established by an interstate compact. Generally a special-purpose district, also known as a special district, is a type of district differing from general-purpose districts like municipalities, counties, etc. ... An interstate compact is an agreement between two or more U.S. states. ...


One of the most famous[citation needed] examples of a special district is the Reedy Creek Improvement District in Florida, but better known as the home of the Walt Disney World Resort. Two cities are located within the district: Bay Lake and Lake Buena Vista. The Reedy Creek Improvement District in Florida is the immediate governing jurisdiction for the land on the Walt Disney World Resort. ... Official language(s) English Capital Tallahassee Largest city Jacksonville Largest metro area Miami Area  Ranked 22nd  - Total 65,795[1] sq mi (170,304[1] km²)  - Width 361 miles (582 km)  - Length 447 miles (721 km)  - % water 17. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Bay Lake is a city located in Orange County, Florida and Osceola County, Florida. ... Lake Buena Vista is a city located in Orange County, Florida, U.S., at the 2000 census the population was 16. ...


County vs. municipal government

All the states are divided into counties excluding Alaska (boroughs) and Louisiana (Parishes); though Connecticut and Rhode Island have completely eliminated county government, and Massachusetts has partially eliminated it. These can exist both for the implementation of the state government's policies, and also as local governments in their own right. The locality which houses the county's main offices is known as the county seat. It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles. ... This article is about the U.S. State. ... This article is about the U.S. State. ... A county seat is a term for an administrative center for a county, primarily used in the United States. ...


Municipalities are generally formally incorporated entities in built-up areas. They usually operate with a degree of autonomy.


Both types of government often operate in the same area, albeit with different responsibilities. Generally in heavily urbanised areas the city government will have considerable powers, with the county government conversely having relatively few (or even none).


Unlike in some other countries, both types of government often have powers to tax both local residents and businesses and to incur public debt. In some areas this means the power to raise a local income tax. County governments in some states also have the ability to add a percentage to the state sales tax. In California, the taxation power of municipalities is strictly limited by Proposition 13, a 1978 amendment to the state constitution. A tax is an involuntary fee paid by individuals or businesses to a state, or to functional equivalents of a state, including tribes, secessionist movements or revolutionary movements. ... This page is a candidate to be copied to Wiktionary. ... An income tax is a tax levied on the financial income of persons, corporations, or other legal entities. ... A sales tax is a state or locality imposed percentage tax on the selling or renting of certain property or services. ... Official language(s) English Capital Sacramento Largest city Los Angeles Area  Ranked 3rd  - Total 158,302 sq mi (410,000 km²)  - Width 250 miles (400 km)  - Length 770 miles (1,240 km)  - % water 4. ... Proposition 13, officially titled the Peoples Initiative to Limit Property Taxation, was a ballot initiative to amend the constitution of the state of California. ... 1978 (MCMLXXVIII) was a common year starting on Sunday. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: California Constitution The California Constitution is the document that establishes and describes the duties, powers, structure and function of the government of the U.S. state of California. ...


Responsibilities of county governments generally include local highway maintenance as well as the provision of refuse collection and recycling facilities in unincorporated areas. Municipal governments are usually responsible for public safety (policing and the fire department).


In most states county and municipal governments exists side-by-side. There are exceptions to this, however; in Virginia, for example, a number of major urban areas exist as independent cities, which exist outside the county framework; similarly, some states have merged city and county governments for some of their biggest cities (examples of this are Carson City in Nevada, and San Francisco in California). In Connecticut, Rhode Island, and parts of Massachusetts, counties exist only to designate boundaries for such state-level functions as park districts (Connecticut) or judicial offices (Massachusetts). Official language(s) English Capital Richmond Largest city Virginia Beach Area  Ranked 35th  - Total 42,793 sq mi (110,862 km²)  - Width 200 miles (320 km)  - Length 430 miles (690 km)  - % water 7. ... An independent city is a city that does not form part of another general-purpose local government entity. ... Carson City redirects here. ... This article does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This page is a candidate for speedy deletion. ... Official language(s) English Capital Sacramento Largest city Los Angeles Area  Ranked 3rd  - Total 158,302 sq mi (410,000 km²)  - Width 250 miles (400 km)  - Length 770 miles (1,240 km)  - % water 4. ...


In areas lacking an incorporated municipal government, the county government is generally responsible for providing all services.


Institutions

The nature of both county and municipal government varies not only between states, but also between different counties and municipalities within them. Local voters are generally free to choose the basic framework of government from a selection established by state law.


In most cases both counties and municipalities have a governing council, governing in conjunction with a mayor or president. Alternatively, the government may be run by a city manager under direction of the city council. In the past the municipal commission was also common. Mayor-Council government is one of two variations of government most commonly used in modern representative municipal governments in the United States. ... The council-manager government is one of 2 main variations of representative municipal government (for contrast, also see Mayor-Council government). ... A city council is the most common style of legislative government in a city or town. ... City Commission government is a form of municipal government that was once common in the United States, but has fallen out of favor, most cities formerly governed by Commission having switched to the Council-Manager form. ...


In addition to elections for a council or mayor, elections are often also held for positions such as local judges, the sheriff (head of the county's police department), and other offices. Look up Sheriff in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Municipalities

Municipalities range in size from the very small (e.g., the Village of Lazy Lake, Florida, with 38 residents), to the very large (e.g., New York City, with about 8 million people), and this is reflected in the range of types of municipal governments that exist in different areas. Lazy Lake is a village located in Broward County, Florida. ... New York, NY redirects here. ...


Most municipalities have a planning department or planning commission. Whether they have other departments or contract out for services (such as accounting and legal services) depends upon the size of the municipality, its legal status (e.g., whether it's a city or village), and so on. San Francisco, for example, has a population of about 750,000 living in a compact geographical area, and has a merged city and county government with a significant budget that is used to provide services through various departments; in contrast, the City of Ypsilanti, Michigan, with a population of about 24,000, contracts its legal services out to a local law firm, and does not even have its own district attorney. This page is a candidate for speedy deletion. ... City of Ypsilanti The Water Tower and Statue of Demetrius Ypsilanti. ... A district attorney is, in some U.S. jurisdictions, the title of the local public official who represents the government in the prosecution of criminals. ...


The names given to the various types of municipal government don't necessarily correspond to usage of the same terms in other English-speaking countries; for example, in British English, a "city" implies an urban area with a large population, whereas in parts of the United States the term can be applied to communities of only a few hundred people. The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... British English (BrE) is a broad term used to distinguish the forms of the English language used in the United Kingdom from forms used elsewhere. ...


Most municipalities use either a mayor-council government or a council-manager government. A third type, the city commission government, was once prevalent but has since fallen out of favor. Mayor-Council government is one of two variations of government most commonly used in modern representative municipal governments in the United States. ... The council-manager government is one of two main variations of representative municipal government in the United States. ... City Commission government is a form of municipal government that was once common in the United States, but has fallen out of favor, most cities formerly governed by Commission having switched to the Council-Manager form. ...


Other types of government

New England town meeting

In New England, there is a tradition of local government presided over by town meetings - assemblies open to all voters to express their opinions on public policy. This article is about the region in the United States of America. ...


Indian reservations

While their territory nominally falls within the boundaries of individual states, Indian reservations actually function outside of their control. The reservation is usually controlled by an elected tribal council which provides local services. BIA map of reservations in the United States Tribal sovereignty: Map of the United States, with non-reservation land highlighted. ... Survivor can mean different things in different contexts. ...


Census of local government

A census of all local governments in the country is performed every 5 years by the United States Census Bureau, in accordance with 13 USC 161. The United States Census Bureau (officially Bureau of the Census as defined in Title ) is a part of the United States Department of Commerce. ...

Governments in the United States[2]

(not including insular areas) An insular area is United States territory that is neither a part of one of the fifty states nor a part of the District of Columbia, the nations federal district. ...

Type Number
Federal 1
State 50
County 3,034
Municipal (city) 19,429
Town or township 16,504
School district 13,506
Special purpose
(utility, fire, police, library, etc.)
35,052
Total 87,576

To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article may require cleanup. ... Look up city, City in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Ronda, Spain Main street in Bastrop, Texas, a small town A town is a community of people ranging from a few hundred to several thousands, although it may be applied loosely even to huge metropolitan areas. ... A civil township is a widely-used unit of local government in the United States, subordinate to a county. ... School districts are a form of special-purpose district in the United States (amongst some other places) which serves to operate the local public primary and secondary schools. ... Generally a special-purpose district, also known as a special district, is a type of district differing from general-purpose districts like municipalities, counties, etc. ... A Public Utility District (PUD) is an entity that provides, electricity, natural gas, sewer, waste collection, wholesale telecommunications, water, etc. ...

Examples of local government in individual states

The following sections provide details of the operation of local government in a selection of states, by way of example of the variety that exists across the country.


Alaska

Alaska calls its county equivalents "boroughs," functioning similar to counties in the Lower 48; however, unlike any other state, not all of Alaska is subdivided into county-equivalent boroughs. Owing to the state's low population density, most of the land is contained in what the state terms the Unorganized Borough which, as the name implies, has no intermediate borough government of its own, but is administered directly by the state government. Many of Alaska's boroughs are consolidated city-borough governments; other cities exist both within organized boroughs and the Unorganized Borough. Map of Alaska boroughs and census areas The Unorganized Borough is that part of Alaska not contained in any of its 16 organized boroughs. ...


California

California has several different and overlapping forms of local government. Cities, counties, and the one city and county can make ordinances (local laws), including the establishment and enforcement of civil and criminal penalties. Official language(s) English Capital Sacramento Largest city Los Angeles Area  Ranked 3rd  - Total 158,302 sq mi (410,000 km²)  - Width 250 miles (400 km)  - Length 770 miles (1,240 km)  - % water 4. ...


The entire state is subdivided into counties (e.g. Santa Clara County). The most important municipal entity is the city (e.g. Los Angeles). California cities are granted broad plenary powers under the California Constitution to assert jurisdiction over just about anything, and they cannot be abolished or merged without the consent of a majority of their inhabitants. For example, Los Angeles runs its own water and power utilities and its own elevator inspection department, while practically all other cities rely upon private utilities and the state elevator inspectors. San Francisco is unique in that it is the only consolidated city-county in the state. Santa Clara County is a county located in the San Francisco Bay Area of the U.S. state of California. ... Flag Seal Nickname: City of Angels Location Location within Los Angeles County in the state of California Coordinates , Government State County California Los Angeles County Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 1,290. ... The California Constitution is the document that establishes and describes the duties, powers, structure and function of the government of the U.S. state of California. ... A set of lifts in the lower level of a London Underground station. ... This page is a candidate for speedy deletion. ...


The city of Lakewood, California pioneered the Lakewood Plan, a contract under which a city reimburses a county for performing services which are more efficiently performed on a countywide basis. Such contracts have become very popular throughout California and many other states, as they enable city governments to concentrate on particular local concerns like zoning. A city which contracts out most of its services, particularly law enforcement, is known as a contract city. Lakewood City Hall Lakewood is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States. ... A contract city is a city in which a city has a contract with a county or parish to provide police services. ...


There are also thousands of "special districts", which are areas with a defined territory in which a specific service is provided, such as schools or fire stations. These entities lack plenary power to enact laws, but do have the power to promulgate administrative regulations that often carry the force of law within land directly controlled by such districts. Many special districts, particularly those created to provide public transportation or education, have their own police departments. A special-purpose district, also known as a special district, is a type of district differing from general-purpose districts like municipalities, counties, etc. ...


Revenue is raised through local property and sales taxes, and the issue of public bonds. Counties also receive revenue from the state Vehicle Licensing Fee (VLF). Unlike other states which allow counties and cities to levy separate taxes upon the ownership of motor vehicles, California has consolidated taxation of vehicle ownership into a single tax at the state level. This simplifies administration but also regularly leads to a flurry of fiscal emergencies in lean years when the state government withholds VLF revenue from local entities in order to balance the state budget.


Connecticut

Unlike most other states, Connecticut does not have county governments; government exists only at the state and municipal levels. Connecticut counties were mostly eliminated in 1960, with the exception of the sheriff system. In 2000, the county sheriff was abolished and replaced with the state marshal system, which is still divided by county. The judicial system is divided, at the trial court level, into judicial districts. The eight counties are still widely used for purely geographical purposes, such as weather reports. The primary political subdivisions of the state of Connecticut are its towns. ...


There are 169 towns across the state, which serve as the primary source of local government. There are also 21 cities, most of which are coterminous with their namesake towns and have a merged city-town government. There are two exceptions: City of Groton, which is a subsection of the Town of Groton and the City of Winsted in the Town of Winchester. There are also ten incorporated boroughs, nine of which provide additional services to a section of town. One, Naugatuck, is a consolidated town and borough.


District of Columbia

The District of Columbia is unique within the United States in that it is under the direct authority of the U.S. Congress, rather than forming part of any state. Actual government has been delegated under the District of Columbia Home Rule Act to a city council which effectively also has the powers given to county or state governments in other areas. ... The Congress of the United States is the legislative branch of the federal government of the United States of America. ... The District of Columbia Home Rule Act is an act of theU.S. Congress passed in 1973. ...


Georgia

The state of Georgia is divided into 159 counties (the largest number of any state other than Texas), each of which has had home rule since at least 1980. This means that Georgia's counties not only act as units of state government, but also in much the same way as municipalities. Devolution or Home rule is the pooling of powers from central government to government at regional or local level. ... 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday. ...


All municipalities are classed as a "city", regardless of population size. For an area to be incorporated as a city special legislation has to be passed by the General Assembly (state legislature); typically the legislation requires a referendum amongst local voters to approve incorporation, to be passed by a simple majority. This most recently happened in 2005 and 2006 in several communities near Atlanta. Sandy Springs, a city of 85,000 bordering Atlanta to the north, incorporated in December 2005. One year later, Johns Creek (62,000) and Milton (20,000) incorporated, which meant that the entirety of north Fulton County was now municipalized. The General Assembly also approved a plan that would potentially establish two new cities in the remaining unincorporated portions of Fulton County south of Atlanta, namely South Fulton and Chattahoochee Hill Country. Both proposed cities are set to vote on incorporation later in 2007. Special legislation (also called local legislation) is a legal term of art used in the United States which refers to acts of a state legislature which apply only to a specific municipality (or a group thereof) which is identified by name in the legislation. ... Type Bicameral Houses Senate House of Representatives President of the Senate Casey Cagle, R since November 7, 2006 Speaker of the House Glenn Richardson, R since November 7, 2006 Members 236 Political groups (as of November 7, 2006 elections) Democratic Party Republican Party Meeting place Georgia State Capitol Web site... State legislatures are the lawmaking bodies of the 50 states in the United States of America. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... Hotlanta redirects here. ... Note: This article title may be easily confused with Sandy Spring Sandy Springs (once known as Hammond) is a newly incorporated city (as of December 1st, 2005) located in Fulton County, Georgia, north of Atlanta and south of Roswell. ... Johns Creek (population approximately 63,000 to 70,000) is an area of Fulton County, Georgia which is proposed to be incorporated as a city (the only type of municipality in the state) in December 2006. ... Milton (population approximately 20,000) is an area of Fulton County, Georgia which will be incorporated as a city (the only type of municipality in the state) in December 2006. ... Fulton County is a county located in the U.S. state of Georgia. ... There are very few or no other articles that link to this one. ...


City charters may be revoked either by the legislature or by a simple majority referendum of the city's residents; the latter last happened in 2004, in Lithia Springs. Revocation by the legislature last occurred in 1995, when dozens of cities were eliminated en masse for not having active governments, or even for not offering at least three municipal services required of all cities. A revoke (also called a renege) is a violation of important rules regarding the play of tricks in trick-taking card games serious enough to render the round invalid. ... 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Lithia Springs is a town, formerly incorporated as city, located in northeastern Douglas County, Georgia. ... 1995 (MCMXCV) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


New cities may not incorporate land less than 3 miles (4.8km) from an existing city without approval from the General Assembly. The body approved all of the recent and upcoming creations of new cities in Fulton County.


Three areas have a "consolidated city-county" government: Columbus, since 1971; Athens, since 1991; and Augusta, since 1996. Columbus is a city in Muscogee County, Georgia, United States. ... 1971 (MCMLXXI) was a common year starting on Friday. ... Athens is a city in Clarke County, Georgia, U.S., in the northeastern part of the state, at the eastern terminus of Georgia 316. ... 1991 (MCMXCI) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Nickname: The Garden City (of the South), Masters City Augusta National Golf Club Motto: We feel Good Location of the consolidated areas of Augusta and Richmond County in the state of Georgia. ... 1996 (MCMXCVI) was a leap year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year for the Eradication of Poverty. ...


Florida

Hawaii

Hawaii is the only U.S. state that has no incorporated municipalities at all. Instead it has four counties plus the "consolidated city-county" of Honolulu. All communities are considered to be census-designated places, with the exact boundaries being decided upon by co-operative agreement between the Governor's office and the U.S. Census Bureau. This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Honolulu as seen from the International Space Station Honolulu is the largest city and the capital of the U.S. state of Hawai‘i. ... A census-designated place (CDP) is an area identified by the United States Census Bureau for statistical reporting. ... The factual accuracy of this article is disputed. ...


Kalawao County is the smallest county in the United States, and is often considered part of Maui County. Kalawao County is a county located in the state of Hawaii. ... Maui County is a county located in the state of Hawaii. ...


Illinois

Louisiana

In Louisiana, counties are called parishes; likewise, the county seat is known as the parish seat. The difference in nomenclature does not reflect a fundamental difference in the nature of government, but is rather a reflection of the state's unique status as a former French colony (although a small number of other states once had parishes too). Official language(s) de jure: none de facto: English & French Capital Baton Rouge Largest city Baton Rouge [1] Area  Ranked 31st  - Total 51,885 sq mi (134,382 km²)  - Width 130 miles (210 km)  - Length 379 miles (610 km)  - % water 16  - Latitude 29°N to 33°N  - Longitude 89°W... A parish is a type of administrative subdivision. ... A parish seat is the administrative center of a parish in the US state of Louisiana. ...


Massachusetts

Despite having fourteen counties, all of the land in Massachusetts is divided up among the cities and towns and there are no "unincorporated" areas or county governments.


New York

For details of local government in this state, see: Administrative divisions of New York. Administrative divisions of New York State differ from those in certain other countries and most U.S. states, leading to misunderstandings regarding the governmental nature of an area. ...


Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania has 67 counties. Its incorporated areas are known as cities, boroughs, and townships. Official language(s) English, Pennsylvania Dutch Capital Harrisburg Largest city Philadelphia Area  Ranked 33rd  - Total 46,055 sq mi (119,283 km²)  - Width 280 miles (455 km)  - Length 160 miles (255 km)  - % water 2. ...


With the exception of Philadelphia and Allegheny County (Pittsburgh), all counties are governed by three to seven county commissioners who are elected every four years; the district attorney, county treasurer, sheriff, and certain classes of judge ("judges of election") are also elected separately. Philadelphia has been a consolidated city-county since 1952. Allegheney County has had a council/chief executive government since 2000, while still retaining its townships, boroughs and cities. Nickname: City of Brotherly Love, Philly, the Quaker City Motto: Philadelphia maneto (Let brotherly love continue) Location in Pennsylvania Coordinates: Country United States State Pennsylvania County Philadelphia Founded October 27, 1682 Incorporated October 25, 1701 Mayor John F. Street (D) Area    - City 369. ... Pittsburgh skyline The Allegheny County Courthouse Allegheny County is a county located in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. ... Nickname: Steel City, Iron City, Steel Town, City of Champions, City of Bridges, City of Colleges, The Burgh Motto: Benigno Numine (With the Benevolent Deity) Location in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania Coordinates: Country United States State Pennsylvania County Allegheny County Founded November 25, 1758 Incorporated April 22, 1794 (borough)   March 18... A district attorney is, in some U.S. jurisdictions, the title of the local public official who represents the government in the prosecution of criminals. ... In many governments, a treasurer is the person responsible for running the treasury. ... Look up Sheriff in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Townships, the most basic municipal unit in Pennsylvania, are divided into one of two classes, depending on their population size. Townships of the "First Class" have a board made up of five to nine commissioners who are elected either at-large or for a particular ward, while those of the "Second Class" have a board of three to five supervisors who are elected at-large. Both commissioners and supervisors serve a four-year term.


However, some townships have adopted a home rule charter which allows them to choose their form of government. One example is Upper Darby Township, in Delaware County, which has chosen to have a "mayor-council" system similar to that of a borough. Devolution or Home rule is the pooling of powers from central government to government at regional or local level. ... Upper Darby Township is a township in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, USA. That split from Darby Township on August 30, 1736. ... Delaware County is a county located in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. ...


Boroughs in Pennsylvania are governed by a "mayor-council" system in which the mayor has only a few powers (usually that of overseeing the municipal police department, if the borough has one), while the borough council has very broad appointment and oversight. The council president, who is elected by the majority party every two years, is equivalent to the leader of a council in the United Kingdom; his or her powers are operate within boundaries set by the state constitution and the borough's charter. A small minority of the boroughs have dropped the mayor-council system in favor of the council-manager system, in which the council appoints a borough manager to oversee the day-to-day operations of the borough.


Cities in Pennsylvania are divided into three classes: Class 1, Class 2, Class 2A, and Class 3. Class 3 cities, which are the smallest, have either a mayor-council system or a council-manager system like that of a borough, although the mayor or city manager has more oversight and duties compared to their borough counterparts. Pittsburgh and Scranton are the state's only Class 2 and Class 2A cities respectively, and have mayors with some veto power, but are otherwise still governed mostly by their city councils. Nickname: Steel City, Iron City, Steel Town, City of Champions, City of Bridges, City of Colleges, The Burgh Motto: Benigno Numine (With the Benevolent Deity) Location in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania Coordinates: Country United States State Pennsylvania County Allegheny County Founded November 25, 1758 Incorporated April 22, 1794 (borough)   March 18... The City of Scranton is the county seat of Lackawanna CountyGR6 in Northeastern Pennsylvania, USA. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 76,415 (2003 estimate: 74,320). ...


Philadelphia is the state's only Class 1 city. It has a government similar to that of the state itself, with a mayor with strong appointment and veto powers and a 15-member city council that has both law-making and confirmation powers, although unlike its state-level counterpart (the General Assembly), it does not have the authority to override the mayor's veto. Certain types of legislation that can be passed by the city government require state legislation before coming into force. Capitol Building The Pennsylvania General Assembly is the U.S. state of Pennsylvanias legislative branch, seated at the states capital, Harrisburg. ...


Unlike the other cities in Pennsylvania, the Philadelphia city government also has oversight of county government, and as such controls the budget for the district attorney, sheriff, and other county offices that have been retained from the county's one-time separate existence; these offices are elected for separately than those for the city government proper.


Rhode Island

Rhode Island's five counties have no government and serve only to delineate regions of the state. All local government in Rhode Island is conducted by its 31 towns and eight cities.


Virginia

Virginia has special provisions relative to cities and counties. The Commonwealth is divided into 95 counties and 39 cities. Cities are independent cities, which mean that they are separate from, and independent of, any county they may be near or within. Cities in Virginia thus are the equivalent of counties as they have no higher municipal government intervening between them and the state government. The equivalent in Virginia to what would normally be an incorporated city in any other state, e.g. a municipality subordinate to a county, is a town. For example, there is a County of Fairfax as well as a totally independent City of Fairfax, which technically is not part of Fairfax county even though the City of Fairfax is the County seat of Fairfax County. Within Fairfax County, however, is the incorporated town of Vienna, which is part of Fairfax County. The political subdivisions of Virginia are the areas into which the U.S. state of Virginia is divided for political and administrative purposes. ... Official language(s) English Capital Richmond Largest city Virginia Beach Area  Ranked 35th  - Total 42,793 sq mi (110,862 km²)  - Width 200 miles (320 km)  - Length 430 miles (690 km)  - % water 7. ... An independent city is a city that does not form part of another general-purpose local government entity. ... Fairfax County is a county in Northern Virginia, in the United States. ... Location in the Commonwealth of Virginia Coordinates: Country United States State Virginia County Independent City Founded 1805 Mayor Robert Lederer Area    - City 16. ... Vienna is a town in Fairfax County, Virginia, United States. ...


West Virginia

West Virginia has 55 counties, which are themselves divided into districts and incorporated cities. The districts exist only for taxation purposes and are otherwise governed at the county level. The incorporated cities have home rule powers. Official language(s) English Capital Charleston Largest city Charleston Area  Ranked 41st  - Total 24,244 sq mi (62,809 km²)  - Width 130 miles (210 km)  - Length 240 miles (385 km)  - % water 0. ...


References

  1. ^ 2002 Census of Governments, Individual State Descriptions (PDF)
  2. ^ 2002 Census of Governments; Volume 1, No. 1, Government Organization. U.S. Census Bureau. http://www.census.gov/prod/2003pubs/gc021x1.pdf

PDF is an abbreviation with several meanings: Portable Document Format Post-doctoral fellowship Probability density function There also is an electronic design automation company named PDF Solutions. ...

External links

  • National League of Cities
  • National Association of Counties
  • American Public Works Association
  • National Association of County Engineers
  • Association of Development Organizations
  • National Association of Towns and Townships
  • National Center for Small Communities
  • International City Management Association (ICMA)
  • Municipal Research & Services Center of Washington (MRSC)
  • U.S. Census Bureau page for local government

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