The City of Bakersfield operates according
to the Council-Manager form of government which vests authority
in an elected City
Council which, in
turn, hires an appointed executive. The City Council is composed
of seven members elected from the seven wards of the City on a
nonpartisan basis to serve overlapping four-year terms. The Mayor is
elected at-large to serve a four-year term as presiding officer
at City Council meetings and as the official head of the City for
legislative and ceremonial purposes. The City
Manager is appointed by the City Council and serves at the
pleasure of that body.
The City Council is
the City's legislative and policy-making body. Acting as
a whole, the City Council is responsible for passing ordinances
and orders necessary for governing the City, as well as for setting
the direction of City policy. The City Manager is responsible
for the overall administration of the City. This responsibility
includes implementation of the general policies set by the City
Council in addition to the day-to-day operation of all City functions. The
City Manager, with the help of the staff, provides the City Council
with the information needed to fulfill its policy-making role.
form of government separates legislative and executive responsibilities
in a manner similar to state and federal governments. This
system provides "checks and balances" of both policy
and administrative branches of government by limiting the power
More than a third
of America's communities currently operate under the Council-Manager
form of government. As the issues involved in municipal management
have grown more complex, the number of communities which hire professional
managers has also increased.
In the State of California,
there are nearly 500 cities, of which more than 400 are the Council-Manager
form of government. These include such large cities as Sacramento,
Oakland, San Jose, San Diego, Long Beach and Anaheim.
Copyright @ 1998 - 2014 - City of Bakersfield. All rights reserved. Mailing Address: 1600 Truxtun Avenue., Bakersfield, California 93301
Phone: (661) 326-3000 | Business Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. | Monday through
Friday except Holidays.