Government

FORM OF GOVERNMENT

The Town of Sumrall follows a mayor-board of alderman form of government, also known as a “code charter”. It is used today by approximately 95 percent of Mississippi’s nearly 300 municipalities.

GOVERNING BODY

Under the mayor-board of alderman form of government, the governing body is comprised of a mayor and either five or seven alderman: five if the municipality has fewer than 10,000 inhabitants, and seven if it has 10,000 or more.

QUALIFICATIONS AND SELECTION OF MAYOR AND ALDERMAN

The mayor and all the members of the board of alderman must be qualified electors of the municipality and must be chosen by election. The mayor is elected from the municipality at-large, while the alderman are elected either at-large, by ward, or by some combination of ward and at-large voting. (all alderman elected from and by wards must be residents of their wards) If an alderman moves from his ward, or if the mayor or an alderman elected at large moves from the municipality, the office is automatically vacated and is filled in the manner set in Code, § 23-15-857.

POWERS AND DUTIES OF MAYOR

The mayor is vested with the “superintending control” of all the officers and affairs of the municipality and is charged with seeing that the laws and ordinances are executed. He/She presides over all meetings of the board of aldermen (and thus recognizes its members for the purpose of making motions, speaking to motions, and so on) but is allowed to vote only in the case of a tie. The mayor has the power to veto any ordinance, resolution, or orders adopted by the board of aldermen by returning the measure to the board, together with a written statement of his/her objections to all or part of it, within ten days of its receipt.

POWERS AND DUTIES OF BOARD

Although the mayor presides over all meetings of the board of aldermen, only members of the board may make motions and cast votes (except in cases of equal division, where the mayor may cast the deciding vote). The board of aldermen is required to elect from among its members a mayor pr tempore to preside over its meetings and otherwise serve in the place of the mayor in case of his/her “temporary absence” or “disability.” The board is required to submit all its ordinances, resolutions, and orders to the mayor for approval or veto; and in the event the mayor vetoes any measure, the board may override the veto by a vote of two-thirds of the members.