City Manager’s Office
Council-Manager Form of Government
The City of Mesquite adheres to the Council-Manager form of government, combining the political leadership of the Mayor and Council with the professional management capabilities of a City Manager. The City Manager, whom is appointed by the City Council, oversees the City’s day-to-day operations as chief executive officer of 20 departments and over 1,100 employees.
Home RuleTexas cities fall in one of two categories: home rule or general law. The Texas Municipal League summarizes the two forms best:
General law cities are smaller cities whose powers are limited; they operate according to specific state statutes that define their powers and duties. They are restricted to doing what the state directs or permits them to do. If a general law city has not been granted the express or implied power by the state to initiate a particular action, none may be taken.
Home rule cities are cities with populations of more than 5,000 in which citizens have adopted home rule charters. A charter is a document that establishes the city’s governmental structure and provides for the distribution of powers and duties among the various branches of government. In order to be implemented, the charter must be approved by the people at an election. Likewise, changes in the charter must be approved by a vote of the people.
The legal position of home rule cities is the reverse of general law cities. Rather than looking to state law to determine what they may do, as general law cities must, home rule cities look to the state constitution and state statutes to determine what they may not do. Thus, if a proposed home rule city action has not been prohibited or pre-empted by the state, the city generally can proceed.”
-TML 2010 Handbook for Mayors and Councilmembers, p. 7
As a home rule city, Mesquite operates under a City Charter. Although the City is still subject to a number of state and federal laws, the Charter enumerates the City’s powers and provides details about its form of government. This includes the administrative and political structure of the City as well as governing procedures of the City Council and other boards and commissions.