AJC explains: What does the Atlanta mayor, City Council do?

Atlanta mayor-elect Andre Dickens celebrates with supporters just before the close of polls Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021 in Atlanta.  (AP Photo/Ben Gray)
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Atlanta mayor-elect Andre Dickens celebrates with supporters just before the close of polls Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021 in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Ben Gray)

Credit: AP

Atlanta city government is made up of administrative and legislative branches. The council president is a member of City Council but has unique duties and responsibilities. Here’s a look at each:

Mayor

Atlanta is served by a strong mayor form of government, in which the mayor is the administrative leader in charge of all city departments The mayor’s duties include general management of the city, providing the city council with a draft annual budget that is balanced, and ensuring all laws and ordinances are enforced. The mayor cannot sponsor ordinances or resolution but can direct administrative actions through executive orders, and veto ordinances or resolutions passed by the city council.

Salary: $202,730.

Council president

The Atlanta City Council President is responsible for presiding over all city council meetings and the appointment of chairs and members of various council committees. The council president assumes mayoral duties if the mayor is disabled, resigns, or is removed from office. The council president cannot sponsor ordinances or resolutions, and only votes on legislation in the event of a tie.

Salary: $74,400.

City Council

There are 15 council members, 12 of whom represent specific areas of the city and three who are elected to citywide at-large posts. Council members write and vote on ordinances, which have the effect of law, and resolutions, which are non-binding but express legislative intent. Council members also develop policies that serve as operational standards and serve on committees which consider legislation before it is voted on by the full council. Council members can override a mayoral veto with a two-thirds majority vote.

Salary: $72,360.

Salaries based on raises that will take effect in January, 2022.

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