Council Manager Form of Government

Nearly 2,500 U.S. cities operate under the council-manager plan, the most successful and popular form of government in cities with a population over 10,000.

Some of the strengths of the council-manager form of government as opposed to a strong mayor form of government include: all councilmembers have equal rights, obligations and opportunities, the power is assigned to the council as a whole, and the city manager must be responsive in providing day-to-day public services to citizens.

Role of City Council

  • Appoints city manager on administrative ability
  • Established Cty policy
  • Legislative body
  • Approves budget

 Role of City Manager

  • Manages day-to-day affairs
  • Enforces laws and ordinances
  • Appoints and removes employees
  • Prepares budget
  • Makes recommendations to the Council on general welfare of the city 


The Council-Manager Form of Government: Answers to Your Questions - Information was provided by the International City/County Management Association (ICMA).