Chapter 11: Local Government

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Terms in this set (...)

Council of governments (COG)
A regional organization of local government units brought together for the purpose of reviewing proposals, planning, and cooperation.
In Texas, these regional planning bodies coordinate government activities on major issues.
Help local governments meet their service delivery responsibilities.
General-law city
Most cities in Texas, especially those with fewer than 5,000 people, are classified as this type, with limited governing abilities.
Bonds
In Texas, both the state and certain local governments have the power to raise revenue to fund projects through the issuing of these items.
Special districts
This form of government is often classified by whether or not it relates to education.
The state of Texas has many of these units of local government that exist to provide specific services or functions.
The most numerous of all local governments in Texas.
Sometimes called hidden governments because the actions of the district officials and employees are less visible than if a county or city provided the services.
"at large"
Candidates elected in this manner run citywide and, once elected, represent the entire city as opposed to a specific district, or part of the municipality.
Nonpartisan
All city elections in Texas are of this type, operating without labels of identification.
Annexation
This term applies to the process through which an outlying area is made a part of the jurisdiction of a city.
Charter
This term describes a document that establishes and organizes city government.
School districts
The state of Texas has more than 1,000 of these independent special districts related to education.
Commissioners court
The governing body of Texas counties that consists of a county judge and four county commissioners.
The policy-making body of a county.
County clerk
The official who keeps county records, handles paperwork, and preserves election results.
Assessor-collector
The county official who is responsible for collecting county and state taxes and fees.
County judge
The official who presides over the commissioners court in Texas counties for a 4-year term.
Sheriff
The powerful elected official that has a position that includes keeping the peace as the county's chief law enforcement officer and operating the county jail.
Council-manager
A city manager, hired by the city council, coordinates budgetary matters.
Mayor-council
The municipality is governed by a mayor and a city council.
A sole executive and a legislative body are each separately elected to govern a city.
Commission
A group of elected officials collectively form a policymaking board to run the city.
One set of officials is elected to legislate and execute the law.
Strong-mayor system
The system that typically grants the mayor greater veto authority and greater appointment powers over the council.
Weak-mayor system
The system that the mayor typically shares appointment and other administrative powers with the city council.
Unitary system
The relationship between states and local governments follows from the fact that states have this system of government.
Initiative
Texas cities use this to determine whether or not a city should impose a cap on the property tax rate which forced reluctant representatives to place the proposed ordinance on the ballot.
At-large place system
An electoral system in which candidates run citywide for a particular seat on the city council.
Rollback elections
Deal specifically with the issue of limiting property tax rate increases.
Constable
Serves as the process officer of justice of the peace courts.
County auditor
A key county official who is appointed rather than elected
A professional engineer
The unit road system concentrates on the day-to-day responsibility for roads in the hands of this person.
Spoils system
In Texas, elected county officials hire county employees using this system.
Dependent agency
A crime control and prevention district is an example of this