Office of the City Secretary
“Functioning much like the Secretary of State, the City Secretary is the local official who maintains the integrity of the election process, ensures transparency and access to city records, facilitates the city’s legislative process, and is the recorder of local government history. The City Secretary acts as the compliance officer for federal, state, and local statutes, including the Open Meetings Act and the Public Information Act, and serves as the filing authority for campaign finance reports and financial disclosure statements."
The City Secretary is a statutory position required by State law and the City Charter. The City Secretary serves as an Officer of the City and is appointed by the City Manager, with approval of City Council. In addition to the statutory duties of the position, the City Secretary is responsible for the executive leadership, direction, and management for the City Secretary Department, including the City of Angleton’s Records Management Program, City Council Administration, Boards & Commissions Administration, Elections Administration, Public Information Administration, and General Administration of the City.
The mission of the City Secretary’s Office is to support, facilitate and strengthen the City of Angleton governmental process by:
- Assisting the City Council in fulfilling its duties and responsibilities;
- Improving public access to municipal records and other information;
- Enhancing public participation in municipal government processes;
- Safeguarding and enriching the municipal election and records management processes;
- Providing continuity for Bryan city government by recording its legislative actions, both contemporary and archival, and serving as historian for the City;
- Serving as local registrar for Bryan residents by proper recordation and filing of birth and death records; and
- Providing daily assistance to all administrative departments of the City of Bryan government.
As in many other cities, the City Secretary’s Office serves as a resource for citizens and a link between citizens and the City organization.
What is a City Secretary?
In 1934, the eminent political scientist, Professor William Bennett Munro, writing in one of the first text books on municipal administration about the municipal clerk/city secretary’s office stated: “No other office in municipal service has so many contacts. It serves the mayor, the city council, the city manager (when there is one), and all administrative departments without exception. All of them call upon it, almost daily, for some service or information. Its work is not spectacular, but it demands versatility, alertness, accuracy, and no end of patience. The public does not realize how many loose ends of city administration this office pulls together.”
Many people might ask the about the City Secretary, "Just what is a City Secretary, and what is the City Secretary’s place in government?"
The City Secretary serves as secretariat to the City Council, the official keeper of records, and the local elections administrator. The official functions and duties of the City Secretary are outlined in the Functions section above. In this section we hope to provide you with a more esoteric view of the City Secretary’s role, and the background and history of this office.
The City Secretary functions much like the Secretary of State or the County Clerk. In Angleton, the City Secretary is responsible for the legislative operations of the City and is directly accountable to the City Council and the City Manager. The City Secretary has direct signature authority and whose signature is required on all Ordinances, Resolutions, and other official documents of the City. The City Secretary’s Office is a citywide information and document resource, and is the official records management office for the City. Every municipality in the United States has a City Secretary or someone who functions as one. Little occurs within the municipality that the City Secretary’s office does not touch, either through leadership; by recording, archiving or providing information; preparing and posting or publishing notices and information; and organizing and facilitating policies, programs and events.