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The City of Carbondale has a council-manager form of government. The Mayor and six City Council members are elected at-large for four-year staggered terms in non-partisan elections. The City Council acts as the policy making body for the City and hires a City Manager as the Chief Administrative Officer. The Mayor is the official head of the City.
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The City Manager is responsible for the following:
The City Manager makes policy recommendations to the Mayor and Council, but the Mayor and Council may or may not adopt and/or modify the recommendations. The City Manager is bound by whatever action the Mayor and Council takes.
The City of Carbondale welcomes citizen participation in the decision-making process. Because professional local government management offers government of the people, by the people and for the people, it sets the stage for citizen activism by encouraging open communication between citizens and their government. Examples range from visioning, in which citizens play a major role in determining the future of their community to community-service activities. Citizens also have the opportunity to present issues to the Mayor and Council at committee meetings; talk one-on-one with council members; or express their concerns at a Public Hearing or Council Meeting. In addition, citizens are encouraged to become members of boards and commissions.