City Governance

Advisory boards and commissions provides for citizen participationin issues concerning the City and its residents. The City Council values the comments and recommendations from the various advisory boards and commissions. Advisory board and commission meetings are usually held at Bloomington Civic Plaza, 1800 West Old Shakopee Road.

Advisory Board of Health—Researches and evaluates issues of health and environment which affect the City. Members include providers and consumers of health services.

Charter Commission—Studies issues and makes recommendations on proposed changes to the City Home Rule Charter on municipal governance.

Creative Placemaking Commission—Advises the City Council in the use of arts, design, culture and creativity to help accomplish the City’s goals for change, growth and transformation in a way that also builds character and quality of place in Bloomington.

Housing and Redevelopment Authority Commission—governs the activities of the Bloomington Housing and Redevelopment Authority.

Human Rights Commission—Aids and advises the City Council in ensuring that all residents have equal opportunity in employment, housing, public accommodations, public services and education and in other affairs that affect the social well-being of the community. Members includes youth members ages 16 – 23.

Local Board of Appeal and Equalization—Conducts hearings and makes final property classification and assessment determinations. Members have experience as an appraiser, realtor, real estate attorney or property manager, or are otherwise familiar with real estate valuation in the city. At least two of the members shall have experience in commercial, industrial and/or apartment valuation.

Merit Board—Oversees the administration of the City’s merit system for City employees and establishes and maintains rules and policies for human resource administration.

Parks, Arts and Recreation Commission—Advises the City Council on matters related to the capital development, improvement and maintenance of City parks as well as recreation and cultural arts programs. Members include at least one young adult member, age 16 to 23.

Planning Commission—Advises the City Council on development proposals, development standards, long-range planning and transportation issues.

Port Authority—Coordinates orderly commercial and industrial development throughout the City. Current efforts are concentrated on the McGough transit-oriented development, Mall of America Phase II and surrounding lands in the South Loop Development Area.

Our City operates under a Council-Manager form of government and has done so since 1932. The two major components to this system of government are the City Council; and a City Manager.

The City Council is the legislative body, establishing City policies, while the City Manager is the administrator, designated to carry out the directives of the Council. Our City’s City Council consists of a Mayor elected at large and six Council Members elected by district. The Mayor and Council Members serve 4 year terms.


The Mayor serves as a member and presiding officer of the Council. In addition to officiating at all City ceremonial functions, the Mayor takes an active role in promoting the City. The Mayor also appoints members of the Planning Board, Civil Service Commission and Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee, among others.

City Council

The City Council, under the City Charter, is given certain specific duties: to set policy, to appoint the City Manager and the City Clerk, to approve the budget, and to enact local laws, resolutions and ordinances. Enactment of a local law must be preceded by a public hearing. A majority vote of the Council is required to pass such a law. Council members also make appointments to certain citizen advisory committees.

City Manager

The City Manager, appointed by the Council, is the chief administrative officer of the City. It is the Manager’s responsibility to supervise and coordinate the work of the departments, prepare and submit to Council an annual budget estimate, enforce City ordinances and state laws, and execute all contracts, leases and deeds authorized by Council. The City Manager keeps Council informed about the fiscal condition and future needs of the City and has the sole power to appoint and remove all heads of departments in the administrative services of the City.

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