Rock Island, IL Government

Rock Island Municipal Government

The task of making life flow smoothly in Rock Island is granted to a number of talented and hard working people. Elected officials, professionals and appointed directors all contribute to the daily task of meeting the needs of Rock Island residents.

Rock Island is administered under a council-manager form of local government. This type of government was established in Rock Island in 1952 to reduce the role of politics in the administration of city services and the planning of future development. By leaving the appointment of department heads up to a non-partisan professional, a council-manager municipal government provides more balanced and consistent services to its citizens.

Rock Island Elected City Officials

At the top of Rock Island city government is the mayor, who acts as the executive head of the city council. The mayor serves a four year term. Working with the mayor are the seven aldermen of the city council. These aldermen are also elected to four year terms.

The city council works with the mayor to set policy for the city and provide service goals for citizens of Rock Island. Together, the mayor and the aldermen of the city council develop the city budget and oversee taxation. The elected officials also are in charge of hiring a professional city manager.

Non-Elected Rock Island City Officials

The day to day operations of Rock Island’s municipal services are overseen by a professional city manager. The city manager also hires the heads of city departments according to the guidelines set by the elected Rock Island officials.
Below the city manager, the employees of 12 city departments directly watch over the services that Rock Island citizens use every day. From the public works worker to police officer, these hard-working men and women maintain the safety and quality of life in Rock Island.

In addition to the city manager and city departments, Rock Island also utilizes over 20 administrative boards and commissions to fully cover the needs of its residents. These administrative organizations are focused on a specific area of community service. For example, future community development is administered by the Planning Commission, a group of appointed citizens who serve three year terms making recommendations for city expansion and development.