What is a County Commissioner and how do you get to be one?
Starting in colonial times, the County Commission is one of the America’s oldest forms of county government . The Clay County Commission is comprised of five members, Commissioners, who are elected by district in partisan elections for a four year term. A commissioner’s term is limited to two consecutive terms for a total of eight years. Each Commissioner must be a resident of the district for which he or she seeks election and is responsible to the members of his or her district. Our commissioner for District 2 will reach his eight year limit in 2014 and I am seeking your support to win that seat.
The Clay County Board of County Commissioners is the legislative branch of County government. Individual Commissioners are both lawmaking officers and fiscal representatives of Clay County. The County Manager and County Attorney are appointed by the Commissioners to oversee daily operations, personnel and legal matters.
Have you ever wondered what a County Commissioner does?
The duties and powers of the County Commission are contained in the County Charter and Florida Constitution examples or their responsibilities include: Fl
- levy taxes and fees for county purposes
- provide and maintain county buildings
- provide fire protection and ambulance services
- provide health and welfare programs
- provide parks, preserves, playgrounds, libraries
- prepare and enforce comprehensive plans for development in the county
- establish and enforce zoning and business regulation
- adopt and enforce building codes
- establish programs for community redevelopment, conservation, flood and pollution control
- provide and regulate waste and sewage collection, water supply, and conservation programs
- provide and operate public transportation systems, roads, bridges, and related facilities
The County Commission adopts an annual budget which includes appropriations for services provided by county offices, i.e. the Sheriff, Property Appraiser, Tax Collector and Supervisor of Elections. The budget also includes appropriations in support of the Circuit and County Attorney, Public Defender, and Clerk of the Court. The Board of County Commissioners governs all unincorporated areas of the county directly; incorporated municipalities (Orange Park, Green Cove Springs, Penny Farms, and Keystone Heights) may call upon the County for specialized services. The County Manager and County Attorney are appointed by the Commission to oversee the County’s daily operation, personnel and legal matters.
The Commission does not have control of the budgets or policies of the Clay County School Board.
Acting individually a single County Commissioner is pretty much just a regular citizen who knows a lot about your local government. Under Florida’s Sunshine law, commissioners are prohibited from discussing most issues with each other in private, but when acting as a group during a publicly advertised open meeting, the Clay County Commission can have a big impact on your day to day life here in Clay County!