The City Council is the legislative branch of our local government. Here's the basics on how Council governs:
How is City Council elected?
Every two years, Albany voters elect at least one councilor from their ward and a mayor to the City Council, Albany’s legislative branch of government.
The city of Albany is split into three areas of similar population called wards. You can use the search box in the map below to find your ward.
What does the City Council do?
- Conducts public hearings
- Sets laws (ordinances) and policies (resolutions)
- Adopts a balanced budget
- Levies taxes, sets fees, and approves franchise agreements
- Appoints the City Manager to carry out Council directives
- (Known as the Council-Manager form of government)
- Appoints the Municipal Court Judge
- Appoints members to citizen advisory groups
There are 3 types of meetings...
|Meeting||Day/Time||Purpose||Open to the public?|
|Discussion and deliberation||Yes|
|Action and decision-making||Yes|
|Executive Session||as needed||Discussion only; no action may be taken in executive session.||No, ORS 192.660 protects discussion about privledged matters such as personnel, labor or property negotiations, and pending litigation.|
When are meetings?
The City Charter requires that the Council hold at least two regular meetings per month. You can find a complete calendar of public meetings on our website at cityofalbany.net/calendar.
City Council Work Session
Monday, December 11, 2023, 4:00pm
Council Chambers, City Hall
City Council Meeting
Wednesday, December 13, 2023, 6:00pm
Council Chambers, City Hall
Four members of the Council must be present at a meeting to take any final action. This is known as a quorum.
The Mayor presides over Council meetings. The Mayor can only vote in case of a tie.
How can you make your voice heard?
During Business from the Public:
Most meetings include an agenda item called Business from the Public. You may sign up to speak online ahead of time or at the meeting in-person.
The mayor then calls on those signed up to give brief remarks about issues they think the council should consider in the future.
Remarks may also be submitted in writing to the City Clerk for distribution to the council. For more information, click here.
During public hearings:
Public hearings are held for certain issues before the council such as land use, property sale and other matters. Some public hearings have specific rules of testimony, which are read at the beginning of the hearing.
Contact your councilors or the mayor:
You can find email and phone contacts for your councilors and the mayor at cityofalbany.net/council.
Councilors may choose to bring your concerns to the attention of the entire council during the meeting. Councilors may also attend outreach events held throughout the year.
Serve on a citizen advisory group or task force:
Over 100 positions are available on citizen advisory groups that recommend action to the council on topics including art, transportation access and safety, land use policy, parks, and much more.
Vacancies are filled year-round, with an annual recruitment during November and December for January appointment. More details are available at council.cityofalbany.net/groups.