Mayor Duties & Relationship with an Administrator

About the Mayor


The mayor is the chief executive officer of the city. In this role, the mayor is responsible for the general welfare of the city. This responsibility is exercised in the two roles of the mayor. They mayor takes on a policy-making role by recommending policies to the council, breaking tie votes, and vetoing legislation. The mayor also fulfills an executive role by seeing that laws are enforced and that city officers and employees properly do their jobs.

The responsibilities are mandated by state statute (Chapter 62.09 (8)) and consequently apply to mayors in municipalities with and without administrators. The difference is in the manner in which the mayor exercises his/her executive responsibility.

Municipalities Without Administrators


In municipalities without administrators, the mayor exercises this responsibility directly by supervising the day-to-day conduct of city activities. Department heads report directly to the mayor and receive their assignments from the mayor.

Municipalities With Administrators


In municipalities with an administrator, the mayor exercises the executive responsibility indirectly by monitoring the activities of the administrator and the various departments of city government. The administrator is responsible for the day-to-day operations of government, including supervision of the department heads.

Duties of a Mayor with an Administrator


The duties of a mayor in a municipality with an administrator are as follows:
  • The mayor shall serve as the chief executive officer of the city, performing executive responsibilities by monitoring the activities of the administrator and the various departments of city government to see that city ordinances and state laws are enforced. This requires knowledge of city ordinances and state laws and a procedure for monitoring municipal activities.
  • The mayor shall serve as the policy leader for the community, providing policy information and recommendations to the council.
  • The mayor shall preside over the city council.
  • The mayor shall vote in the event of a tie vote by the council.
  • The mayor shall have the authority to veto ordinances passed by the council.
  • The mayor shall serve as the chief representative of the city in relations with the media.
  • The mayor shall represent that city in meetings with and presentations to other governmental units, businesses, community groups, and other groups.
  • The mayor shall work with residents of the community in receiving their comments and complaints and seeking appropriate responses, in conjunction with the administrator and, if desired, the council.
  • The mayor shall perform any other duties not specified here that are defined in Chapter 62.09 (8).

More Information


For more information, please fill out our contact form or contact WCMA Executive Director Dawn Peters at contact@wcma-wi.org or 815-753-0923.