Stepping into a leadership role on the City Commission is a serious, but worthwhile endeavor. If you are considering running for office, the information contained on this page will provide you with valuable insight to help you make your decision.
The City of Abilene has two different terms for the City Commission; the two candidates receiving the most votes in the General Election receive four-year terms, and the candidate receiving the third most votes receives a two-year term. This is the only major difference between members of the City Commission. Every member of the City Commission is considered an equal with the other members. Even the Mayor is on equal terms as the other members.
City Commissioners are considered the democratic "voice of the people" and exercise the public's will by concentrating on issues that are responsive to the needs of the community. The City Commission accomplishes this by:
- enacting ordinances (law) and resolutions (policy or policy guidance);
- appointing a City Manager to oversee the day-to-day operations of the City;
- appointing individuals to serve of advisory boards and commissions;
- reviewing and approving the annual budget, setting the tax rate, and approving the financing of municipal operations;
- establishing municipal fees and utility rates;
- authorizing and approving contracts on behalf of the City; and
- monitoring the municipal programs and services to ensure they are meeting the public's expectations.
In April, the City Commission selects one of its members to serve as Mayor. The Mayor presides over all meetings of the City Commission, serves as a spokesperson for the community, facilitates communication and understanding among fellow elected officials, and acts as a community ambassador. A Vice-Mayor is also selected to serve as Mayor when the Mayor is unable to fulfill the duties of the position.