Role of Municipal Government
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Role of Municipal Government



Summary of role and structures of Local Governments in Wisconsin

Summary of role and structures of Local Governments in Wisconsin



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Role of Municipal Government Role of Municipal Government Presentation Transcript

  • Philip J. Freeburg, J.D. Local Government Center,University of Wisconsin Extension- Madison
  • Objectives Roles and Relationship of Local Government to State and Federal Government Roles and Structures of Wisconsin Local Governments
  • We Know: Federal Government State Government Local Government
  • Federal and State Government Federal Government role:Constitution is the framework of federal powers  What are these powers?
  • Federal Government Powers Defense International and Native American Relations Regulate Interstate & Foreign Commerce Postal Service and Roads Currency and Regulation of Money Federal Court System Copyrights and Patents Taxation and Borrowing Money Provide for Common Defense & General Welfare
  • State PowersAmendment 10 – US ConstitutionPowers of the States and People.The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
  • Powers of Local GovernmentsThe US constitution does not mention County, Town, City, or other Municipal Government
  • Government Responsibility Because all other government responsibilities fall to the states, state governments create and control local governments. Local Government supply most of citizens daily services Local government is where most people see effective democracy at work
  • Relationships of Federal, State and Local Government in ActionYou live in a Town & your neighbor’s house is on fire. You call 911 for help. Where does help come from? The White House? Congress? Governor or the State Legislature? Your County? Your Town? The City?
  • To answer the question let’s followthe path of the Firefighters gearto the fire next door:
  • Fire fighters wear special insulatedand fire resistant protective gear
  • Your local Town Board decided: How to provide town fire protection How to fund it with taxes or grants Maybe entered an agreement with another local government to obtain or jointly provide fire protection
  • County : Provides the 911 Service to dispatch the fire department Through Emergency Government:  Coordinates emergency service in the county  Assisted with grants for equipment and training
  • State Government Sets requirements and standards for local governments to provide fire protection Sometimes assists or services grant funding
  • Federal Government  Through Department of Homeland Security grant programs provide funds for local fire departments, including funds for fire fighter gear
  • Can you think of other ways yourlocal government interacts withyou and other governments?
  • HighwaysLaw enforcementEducationSocial ServicesOther
  • Wisconsin Local Governments 72 Counties 1,265 Towns 402 Villages 190 Cities 426 School Districts 16 Wisconsin Technical College Districts
  • The Framework of Your Wisconsin Government Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance (2005)
  • Organizationof Wis. Local Government
  • County County Executive,County Administrator County Board or Administrative Coordinator Circuit Court
  • Central Administration County Executive County Administrator Administrative Coordinator
  • Elected County Officials Sheriff* District Attorney * Coroner* Register of Deeds*  *Positions named in State Constitution Clerk of Circuit Courts County Clerk Treasurer Surveyor
  • County Board of Supervisors Supervisors serve primarily a legislative role The legislative function is largely limited to policy making, law making, budgetary approval, and cooperative decision-making No operational control resides with individual supervisors
  • Home Rule Definition: the authority the state concedes to a local government to govern its own affairs within its own boundaries.
  • Home Rule Cities and Villages:  Permitted “to determine their local affairs and government, subject only to this constitution and to such enactments of the legislature of state-wide concern as with uniformity shall affect every city or every village.” Counties:  May exercise any organizational or administrative power, subject only to the constitution and to any enactment of the legislature which is of statewide concern and which uniformly affects every county.  “Administrative home rule.”
  • Towns Town Town BoardMeeting of Supervisors
  • Town Meeting Meeting of “Electors”  All persons eligible to vote Direct Powers - Examples:  Levy taxes  Fix compensation for town offices.  Combine certain town offices, or make some town offices part-time. Grants of Authority, Directives, Authorizations - Examples:  Delegate Tax Levy Authority  Exercise Village Powers  Purchase or convey town real property
  • Town Board of Supervisors 3 to 5 Supervisors Decision Making and Administration Chairman:  Presides over Board Meetings and Town Meetings  Signs Town documents  Sees to administration of Statutes  Act on Authorization of Board  Statute specified duties
  • Typical Town Services  Public Improvements, Road Building and Maintenance  Regulation & Enforcement as required by state and county  Parks and Recreation Facilities Some Towns :  Police  Land Use Regulation  “Village Powers”
  • Town Officials Clerk Treasurer Constable
  • Finer Point “Town” is a specific unit of government “Township” is surveyors geographic unit, typically 6 miles by six miles
  • Cities and Villages “Incorporated” Extensive “Home Rule” Usually more concentrated population May annex town area(s) Direct Legislation available to voters
  • Cities CityMayor Council
  • Mayor Veto power as to all acts of the council  except where it is expressly or by necessary implication not permitted Chief Executive Officer Oversees state and local law is observed and enforced Provide information and recommendation action to City Council Appoint citizens to Commissions and Boards Head of police and fire departments  Unless Police and Fire commission has management power
  • City Council Mayor presides but only votes to break a tie Most elected to represent districts Length of terms, Staggered terms determine by Charter Ordinance under Home Rule
  • City Council Alderpersons serve primarily a legislative role The legislative function is largely limited to policy making, law making, budgetary approval, and cooperative decision-making No operational control resides with individual Alderpersons
  • City Officials Clerk Treasurer Attorney* Police and Fire Chiefs Assessor* Engineer* Board of Public Works* Street Commissioner*  *Or provide otherwise for performance of their assigned duties
  • VillagesBoard ofTrustees
  • Village Board of Trustees 6 Trustees  3 Trustees in villages of 350 people or less Elected at Large Village President  Presides over Board Meetings  “Maintain Peace and Good Order”  Sees that “ordinances are… obeyed”
  • Village Board of Trustees As with County Supervisors and Alderpersons, a Village Trustee has no power to act unilaterally or speak for the village other than as part of a quorum No supervisory authority rests with individual Trustees
  • Village Officials Clerk Treasurer Assessor Police and Fire Chiefs
  • Third Branch Cities, Villages and Towns Municipalities may create Municipal Courts Hears, Decides and Imposes Judgments on Ordinance Violation Cases Municipal Judge(s) elected Judges supervised by Supreme Court
  • Manager Form of Government City Council-Manager or Village Board-Manager Plan Adopted by Charter Ordinance or Public Petition and Referendum Appoint a manager who then is:  the chief executive officer of the city [or village]  The head of the city [or village] administration 19 Cities and Villages have Managers Form of Government
  • Manager Form of Government Chapter 64 provides for the Council/Manager Plan Unique in that it provides for a City Manager to be the CEO and does not provide for a Mayor 11 Wisconsin Cities use this form
  • Other Local Governments Town Sanitary Districts Metropolitan Sewerage District Lake Districts Drainage Districts Wisconsin Technical College Districts School District
  • Questions
  • Find Out More Local Government Center  The Framework of Your Wisconsin Government  published by The Wisconsin Taxpayer Alliance The Changing World of Wisconsin Local Government by Susan C. Paddock in 97-98 Wisconsin Blue Book Officials Handbooks from Wis. Towns Association, Wis. Counties Association and League of Wis. Municipalities
  • Philip J. Freeburg, J.D. Local Government Center,University of Wisconsin Extension- Madison 234 Lowell Hall, 610 Langdon Street Madison, WI 53703 (608) 265-6273