A city council is an organization that is in charge of carrying out all the administrative tasks of which it has competence within a municipality.
The administration has several administrative levels, since the municipality is, depending on the country, the lowest or almost the lowest level.
The visible head of that municipality is the city council, which is the one who acts as the administrator of the territory. The municipality, as an administrative territory, is also called a local entity. The municipalities have a very well defined bureaucratized hierarchical structure.
At the head of the municipal corporation is the mayor, and below him the government councilors (holders of a government area), who are usually from the same party as the mayor, all of them form the Governing Board.
In addition, the plenary session is made up of those mentioned above plus the councilors without a council, and their number depends on the size of the municipality and what is dictated by the law developed by the local government.
The plenary session is the one with the regulatory authority. You can also create other committees for specific issues, these will have one or another composition depending on the nature of it.
In turn, a wide variety of civil servants work in the town hall, some are within the town hall itself, doing the administrative tasks related to their municipality. And, on the other hand, there are all those who carry out their work outside the town hall, such as local policemen or librarians. For other functions, such as waste collection, outsourcing is often practiced.
City council powers
The powers that a city council has are very diverse, both legislative and executive. The executives are carried out by the councilors (also called councilors or councilors) in the exercise of their functions.
For example, the mayor of security will have powers over the local police of the municipality. At the legislative level, depending on the country and the law that regulates the local administration, it will grant one or another freedom to legislate.
At the legislative level, the tool that the city council has is the regulation, but its provisions cannot contradict the laws and norms that are above the regulations.
It should also be noted that powers can be exclusive or delegated. The exclusive ones are those powers that are directly included in the law that regulates the local administration, and the delegated ones are those that a higher entity (Autonomous Community, State, Province or Central Government) attributes to the city council, the power being originally theirs.
The municipalities also have on the legislation and collection of local taxes that help to its financing. Examples of these would be the IAE (Tax on Economic Activities) in Spain, the cigarette consumption tax in Colombia, or the property tax in countries such as Mexico or Venezuela.
As concrete examples of competences developed by municipalities we have:
- Public road.
- Local taxes.
- Cleaning and garbage.
- Local security.