is an administrative entity composed of a clearly defined territory and its population and commonly denotes a city
, or village
, or a small grouping of them. A municipality is typically governed by a mayor
and a city council
or municipal council
The notion of municipality includes townships but is not restricted to them. A municipality is a general-purpose district, as opposed to a special-purpose district.
In most countries, a municipality is the smallest administrative subdivision to have its own democratically elected representative leadership. In some countries, municipalities are referred to as "communes" (for example, French commune, Italian comune, Swedish kommun and Norwegian/Danish kommune). The term derives from the medieval commune. In some countries, especially in the Middle East, the term "municipality" is also used to refer to the municipal administrative building known elsewhere as the town hall or city hall.
The largest municipalities can be found in Canada, Greenland and Australia.
Municipalities as lower-level entities
- In Albania, a municipality is either part of a city or a province such as The Municipality of Tirana which, in 2005, earned the international price of "most efficient municipality in Europe."
- In Algeria, a municipality (commune) is part of a daïra, which is part of a wilaya; there are 1,541 communes in Algeria.
- In Argentina, a municipality (municipalidad) is a city, town, or township, which is part of a province. The provinces organize the municipalities in their territories according to their own municipal regime.
- In Australia, municipalities are subdivisions of a state or territory. (See Local Government Areas in Australia).
- In Austria, a municipality (Gemeinde) is part of a district (Bezirk), which is in turn part of a state (Bundesland).
- In Belgium, a municipality (gemeente/commune) is either part of a province (provincie/province) or of the Brussels-Capital Region
- In Bolivia, a municipality (municipio) is part of a province, which is part of a departamento.
- In Bosnia and Herzegovina, a municipality (općina or opština) is
- In Brazil, a municipality (município) is part of a state (estado) and the it's smallest political-administrative division.
- In Canada, a municipality is a city, town, township, district, county, or regional municipality which has been incorporated by statute by the legislatures of the provinces and territories. It is also a specific designation for certain municipalities in Quebec, Nova Scotia and Ontario. Certain areas of Saskatchewan and Manitoba are designated as rural municipalities, while equivalent areas in Alberta are designated as municipal districts and some in British Columbia are designated as district municipalities.
- In Chile, a municipality (municipalidad) is a legal entity which administers one or more communes (comuna) which are the third-level division of the country. The first division are regions which a next divided into provinces (provincia). These provinces are next divided into comunas which are assigned to a municipality for administration. In most cases the municipality and the comuna have the same name, but the constitution permits a single municipality to be responsible for more than one commune.
- In Colombia, a municipality (municipio) is part of a department (departamento). It also subdivided into Corregimientos and Veredas.
- In Croatia, a municipality (općina) is part of a county (županija)
- In the Czech Republic, a municipality (obec) is part of a kraj (kraj)
- In Denmark, a municipality (kommune) is part of a region. Counties (amter) were abandoned in Denmark on January 1, 2007.
- In the Dominican Republic a municipality (municipio) is a subdivision of a province (see municipalities of the Dominican Republic).
- In Estonia, a municipality (omavalitsus) is the smallest division.
- In Finland, a municipality (kunta / kommun) co-operates with municipalities nearby in a sub-region (seutukunta / region) and region (maakunta / landskap); a region belongs to a province (lääni / län) of the state. A municipality can freely call itself a "city" (kaupunki / stad).
- In France, a municipality (commune) is part of a department (département) which is part of a region (région)
- In Germany, a municipality (Gemeinde) is part of a district (Kreis). Larger entities of the same level are called towns (Stadt). In less populated regions, municipalities are often put together into collective municipalities (Verbandsgemeinde)
- In Greece, a municipality is either demoi or koinotetes (demoi with little population) which is then part of a prefecture (nomos) and then a larger region known as a periphery. Municipalities are third-level administrative divisions and their heads (mayors in demoi, presidents in koinotetes) are appointed via popular vote held every four years.
- In Haiti, a municipality (commune) is part of an arrondissement, which is part of a department (département).
- In Hungary, a municipality (települési önkormányzat) is part of a county (megye).
- In India, a municipality is often referred to town. It is neither village nor big city. Usually, a municipality would have 100,000 or more people, but if it exceeds one million, it becomes a corporation.
- In Italy, a comune is part of a province (provincia) which is part of a region (regione). The term "municipality" is reserved for subdivisions of larger comuni (in particular, the comune of Rome).
- In Japan, a municipality is the sphere of government within the prefectures, the sub-division of the state.
- In Kenya, a municipality is one of four types of local authorities. Nearly 50 major towns are given the municipality status.
- In Latvia, a rural municipality (sing.:novads, plur.:novadi) is part of a district (sing.:rajons, plur.:rajoni). A rural municipality normally consists of amalgated parishes (sing.:pagasts, plur.:pagasti). An urban municipality is called rajons.
- In Lebanon, a municipality is part of a district (Arabic: Qadaa) which is part of a Governorate (Region or Province, Arabic: Mouhafazah).
- In Lithuania, a municipality (savivaldybė) is a part of a district (apskritis) and is subdivided into elderates (seniūnija).
- In Luxembourg, communes are the lowest divisions.
- In Mexico, a municipality (municipio) is a subdivision of a state (estado) and a borough (delegación) is a subdivision of the Federal District (see municipalities of Mexico and boroughs of the Mexican Federal District).
- In the Netherlands, a municipality (gemeente) is part of a province (provincie).
- Every part of mainland New Zealand is part of either a "city" (mostly urban) or a "district" (mostly rural). The term "municipality" has become rare in New Zealand since about 1979 and has no legal status.
- In Nicaragua, a municipality (municipio) is subdivision of a department (departamento) or of one of the two Autonomous Regions, Región Autónoma del Atlántico Norte and Región Autónoma del Atlántico Sur.
- In Norway, a municipality (kommune) is part of a county (fylke). There are 431 municipalities in Norway (2006).
- In the Palestinian National Authority, municipalities are localities with populations over 4,000 and have 13-15 council members. There are 105 municipalities in the PNA.
- In Peru, a municipality (municipio) is another term for district (distrito) and is the lower-level administrative subdivision. It is part of a province (provincia), which is part of a department (departamento). As of 2002 a department is now called a region (región).
- In the Philippines, a municipality (bayan) is a town with a popularly elected administration including a mayor, and is part of a province (lalawigan) — except for the independent municipality of Pateros, Metro Manila in the National Capital Region — and is composed of barangays.
- In Poland, a municipality (gmina) is a part of a county (powiat).
- In Portugal, a municipality (município) is a directly elected local area authority generally consisting of a main city and surrounding villages, with wide-ranging local administration powers. It is also a subdivision of a district for central government purposes(distritos).
- In Puerto Rico, a municipality (municipio) is a town or city with a popularly elected administration, including a mayor.
- In Romania, a municipality (municipiu) is a town or a city ranked by law at this level. A commune is the lowest subdivision of a judeţ.
- In Russia, several types of municipalities ("municipal formations") exist; see subdivisions of Russia
- In Serbia, a municipality (opština) is part of a county (okrug)
- In Slovakia, a municipality (obec) is part of a district (okres). There are 2 891 municipalities in the state.
- In South Africa, district municipalities and metropolitan municipalities are subdivisions of the provinces, and local municipalities are subdivisions of district municipalities.
- In Sweden, a municipality (kommun) is part of a county (län).
- In Switzerland, a municipality (commune/Gemeinde/comune) is part of a canton (canton/Kanton/cantone) and defined by cantonal law.
- In the United Arab Emirates, a municipality is part of an emirate, and is defined by the law of the specific emirates.
- In the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, a municipality is governed by official political borders, such as that of the Greater Belfast area in Northern Ireland. As is the same for the Greater London area and not just the City of London. The term municipality and the word municipal in general is not commonly heard. Greater x area or county would be the most common in usage.
- In the United States, the entities that have status as a municipality vary from state to state. Cities, towns, boroughs, or villages are common terms for municipalities. Townships, counties, and parishes are not generally considered to be municipalities, although there are exceptions. In some states, towns have a non-municipal status similar to townships. Likewise, some townships have full municipal status.
- In Venezuela, a municipality (municipio) is part of a state, as well as a subdivision of the Capital District (estado).
First-level entities and other forms of municipalities
- In the People's Republic of China, a direct-controlled municipality (直辖市 in pinyin: zhíxiáshì) is a city with equal status to a province: Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, and Chongqing (see Municipality of China)
- In the Republic of China on Taiwan, a municipality (直轄市 in Wade-Giles: chi-hsia-shih) is a city with equal status to a province: Taipei and Kaohsiung. (see Municipality of China)
- In Jersey, a municipality refers to the honorary officials elected to run each of the 12 Parishes into which it is subdivided. This is the highest level of regional government in this jurisdiction.
- In Macedonia, 84 municipalities (opštini; singular: opština) were established in 2004, reduced from 123 created in 1996.
- In Portugal, a municipality (município/concelho) is the primary local administrative unit. Although it is a part of a district (distrito) for certain national administrative purposes, the municipality is not subordinate to the district and decentralization is doing away with the districts. A municipality contains one or more freguesias.
- In Puerto Rico, there are no first order administrative divisions, and the municipalities (municipio) serves as second-order, but first level, administrative divisions.
- In Montenegro, a municipality (opština) is the topmost regional division
- Municipalities of Libya, some very large.
- In Slovenia, a municipality (občina) is the primary local administrative unit. There are 210 of them, 11 of which have a special "Urban" status with additional autonomy.
- In Spain, a municipality (municipio) is the primary local administrative unit. It is a part of a province (provincia) for all national administrative purposes. In the Galicia region, the municipalities are called concellos, and in the Principality of Asturias region, a municipality is called conceyu. In these two regions a municipality contains one or more parroquias.
The Michigan Municipal League