The mayor of Chicago, the city’s chief executive officer, directs city departments and appoints department heads, with the advice and consent of the City Council. Chicago’s mayor is elected for a four-year term in the year preceding each presidential election year; this election is held on the last Tuesday in February. If no candidate receives more than 50 percent of the vote, a runoff election is held on the first Tuesday in April.
The mayor submits a proposed budget to the City Council, which must be approved by the end of each calendar year; he/she also regularly presides at City Council meetings and can vote in the event of a tie. Chicago’s chief executive must approve or veto all ordinances passed by the City Council and has the power to veto whole ordinances or parts of appropriations bills.
The mayor also appoints members to city boards and commissions, and to the boards of “sister agencies,” including the Board of Education, City Colleges of Chicago, Chicago Housing Authority, Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Library, four members of the Chicago Transit Authority, six members of the Chicago Public Building Commission, four members of the International Port District and seven members of the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority board.
A Chronology of Chicago’s Mayors »
This chronological listing of Chicago’s mayors offers access to biographical information and inaugural speeches.