A county-council can be simply defined as an elected administrative body that is responsible for governing a specific area. In the United States of America, the majority of the individual states have counties as a form of local government. As mentioned by Fred Glynn nine states of the US are headed by the county council. Glynn himself was elected to the Hamilton County Council in 2014. He represents the District 1 region, which includes almost all of Carmel, as well as the western edge of Fishers. He currently works as a Mortgage Loan officer, and had opened his own insurance agency subsequent to the tragic incident of 9/11
Fred Glynn sheds light on the duties and responsibilities of county council representatives
Town, city, as well as county council-members and county commissioners basically are legislators. They make up a legislative body together that is provided with the authority to make local law by the state constitution and state law. Fred Glynn is often found to mention that local legislative authority is typically limited to what the relaxant state specifically grants to towns, cities, and counties. However, charter cities, code cities, and charter counties do have “home rule” powers that enable them to exercise authority, provided that the state has specifically not prohibited them from doing so.
Taking about county council purposes, Fred Glynn focuses on the Hamilton County of Indiana. He mentions that the Hamilton County Council has been provided with financial powers, which serves as a check on the Board of Commissioners. The county has been additionally divided into four distinct districts, for the purpose of election. One council member is elected subsequently from each of these districts. Glynn himself had been elected from District one. In addition to these four members, there are three more council members elected from the county at large, thereby making seven members on the whole.
Here are some of the key responsibilities of the Hamilton County Council highlighted by Fred Glynn:
- They have the exclusive power to fix the tax rate related to county purposes, as well as various other tasks, where the rate has not been fixed by the law and is needed to be uniform
- They hold the exclusive power of making appropriates that have to be paid out of the treasury of the county
- The members of the Hamilton county are majorly responsible for creating the annual budget subsequent to receiving estimates that have been submitted by diverse county agencies through the relevant county auditor
- They incur county indebtedness within the constitutional limitations
- They are responsible for the appropriation of additional funds that arise after the budget is adopted
The City Council members also have certain responsibilities and powers when it comes to real estate. Any sale of real-estate property with an appraised value of $10,000 or more should be approved by the County Council, and so should be the lease of property for which the total annual rental payments are $3,000 or more.