Utah allows four forms of county government, with one very interesting variation. The links are to relevant state code.
  • County commission form of government is our current form. Three county commissioners are elected at large. The three commissioners are both the executive and legislative body.
  • Expanded county commission form of government. Five or seven county commissioners are elected either at large, or by district, or a mix of at large and by district. The five or seven commissioners serve as both the executive and legislative body.
  • County executive-council form of county government. The county executive is elected and is the executive body. Council members are elected and serve as the legislative body. Size of the council is not specified and members can be elected at large, by district, or a mix.
  • Council-manager form of county governmentThe council is elected and is the legislative body. The council appoints a manager who serves as the executive body, with some limitations. Size of the council is not specified and members can be elected at large, by district or a mix.
  • Urban county structural form of county government. This variation apparently requires a council form with at least three council members as the legislative body. As I understand it, it allows for the formation of "districts" in the unincorporated areas and "...empowered to exercise within the unincorporated territory of the county all powers and duties which, by general law, are conferred upon cities whose population is equal to that of the unincorporated territory of such county." In other words, instead of law being required to follow state code for county law making, the council can create law for the unincorporated areas under state code that applies to the bigger towns of West Haven and Washington Terrace.
In the first four forms, elections MUST BE partisan and MUST NOT subject officials to recall. In the structural form the Plan must specify how council members are removed from office.


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