About City Council

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Charlottesville voters elect a five member Council to serve at large as the City's legislative and governing body. The members serve four year terms, and they select one Councilor to serve as Mayor and one as Vice Mayor for two years. Municipal elections are held in November in odd-numbered years. The terms of Council members are staggered so that three are elected in one year and two are elected two years later. If a vacancy occurs, Council elects a new member to serve out the unexpired term.

The Mayor presides over meetings, calls special meetings, makes some appointments to advisory boards and serves as the ceremonial head of government. The Vice Mayor substitutes whenever the Mayor is not available. The Mayor holds open office hours monthly on the Wednesday following the first regular Council meeting from 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.  Walk-ins are welcome, but appointments are encouraged to ensure a time slot. Please call or e-mail the Clerk to make an appointment.

City Council appoints the City Manager, the Director of Finance, the City Assessor, the Clerk of the Council and members of major policy-making Boards and Commissions. The Clerk represents Council to the public during regular business hours, notifying citizens of Council meetings and maintaining public records of the meetings. Council makes policy in the areas of city planning and finances, human development, public safety and justice, public utilities, and transportation. It has specific powers to pass ordinances, levy taxes, collect revenues, adopt a budget, make appropriations, issue bonds, borrow money, and provide for the payment of public debts.

To learn more about individual Councilors, CLICK HERE.