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Mayor / City Commission

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Bay City Michigan Ward mapThe City of Bay City operates under a Commission-Manager form of government. Under this system, all corporate authority is vested in the commission, consisting of nine commissioners elected by ward and a mayor elected at large on a nonpartisan ballot. The commission is similar to a board of directors of a corporation, in which all policy-making or legislative functions that are part of a city's government are the exclusive domain of the commission. The commission's primary business is the passage of laws in the form of ordinances or resolutions. Their terms last four years and are staggered to ensure experienced legislators at all times. Commissioners of Wards 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9 are elected at the same time, and Wards 2, 4, 6, and 8 are elected at the same time.

The mayor serves as the chief executive officer and presides at the commission meetings. He or she may vote in case of a tie and has veto authority. The mayor is elected for a four-year term. Election of the mayor is held in November in odd-numbered years.

A commissioner is responsible for representing the concerns of the ward from which he or she was elected. In addition, commissioners have a responsibility for the overall health, welfare and safety of the city as a whole. While an individual commissioner has no specific authority, together as a group (functioning as the commission), they possess all the authority and power vested in a local government.

Commission Meetings

Commission meetings are held every first and third Monday of the month (with some exceptions) at 7:30 p.m. in the commission chambers of City Hall, 301 Washington Ave. Meetings are open to the public.

The mayor and commissioners encourage the interest, attendance and participation of the public at commission meetings. The public is invited to speak on issues during public hearings and general audience participation.