City Council

Our Government

The City of Des Plaines was incorporated in 1857 and operates under the statutory Mayor-Manager form of government.  The City Manager serves as the City’s Chief Administrative Officer and is responsible to the Mayor and City Council for the efficient management and operation of all of the affairs of the City and its departments. 

The City Council is comprised of ten elected officials: the Mayor, City Clerk and eight Aldermen.  The City is divided into eight wards, with the residents of each ward electing an Alderman to represent the ward.  The Council is the legislative body of the City, setting policy direction and enacting legislation affecting the City.

The City is a full-service City and its operations are concentrated within six major operating departments—City Manager’s Office, Community & Economic Development, Finance, Fire, Police, and Public Works & Engineering. 

Strategic Planning 

Governing decisions are best driven by a shared vision, or Strategic Plan, which helps define an organization's strategy and long-term direction. In municipal government, strategic planning is the preferred approach to guiding a community's future.

In order to determine where it is going, a municipality needs to know exactly where it stands, then determine where it wants to go and how it will get there. Rather than making ad-hoc decisions on an issue-by-issue basis, a Strategic Plan assists and guides a municipality to best secure its financial stability and longevity as a community and government.

More about the Budget

On an annual basis, the City Manager’s Office prepares and submits a budget for consideration by the City Council. The annual budget establishes the spending parameters for city government operations. Click here to view the City's past and present budgets and financial reports.

PLEASE NOTE: All City Council Meetings are broadcast live on the Local Government Access Channel 17 and on our website. Recorded meetings are available to view from the convenience of your computer 24/7. View the City Council meeting procedures.