The City of Falls Church operates under the Council-Manager form of government as provided by the City Charter and adopted by the Virginia General Assembly in 1950. Political authority is vested in the seven-member City Council, which enacts ordinances and resolutions, approves City budgets, sets tax rates, and establishes policy. In formulating decisions and policy, the Council Members act as a group. The City Manager is appointed by the Council as full-time administrator of the City government.
Current Falls Church City Council. Seated, left to right: David Snyder, Mayor David Tarter, Vice Mayor Marybeth Connelly. Standing, left to right: Letty Hardi, Dan Sze, Phil Duncan, Karen Oliver.
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The seven Council Members are elected at-large for four-year terms and are not affiliated with any national political party. Elections of City Council Members are held in November of odd-numbered years for staggered terns. With the seating of a new Council, the Council members elect the Mayor and Vice Mayor for a two-year term.
Council Members are often career professionals holding down full-time jobs. In addition to attending 22 Council meetings and 22 work sessions each year, they attend meetings of local boards and commissions and regional organizations. Members also serve on committees of state and regional organizations and participate in the Virginia Municipal League.