Form of Government

City Manager


The City of Kearney adopted the Council-Manager form of government in 1950. Under this system, the City Council acts as Kearney’s legislative and policy-making body and appoints the City Manager as their chief executive officer.


The City Manager is the administrative official responsible for implementing Council policies. The City Manager:
  • Directs the City work force
  • Prepares the annual budget for Council action
  • Recommends to the Council measures considered important
  • Appoints department heads and staff
  • Undertakes a wide range of other necessary tasks
Additionally, the City Manager attends all the City Council meetings and advises the Council on the technical implications of its decisions.

City Council


Under the Council-Manager form of government, the City Council acts as Kearney’s legislative and policy-making body.

Its five members are elected at large on a staggered basis for four-year terms. From within the Council, one member is elected as President of the Council and is recognized as Mayor. The Mayor presides over Council meetings and represents the City in ceremonial functions.

Budget Review and Adoption

One of the most important actions the Council undertakes is the review and adoption of the annual budget. The budget is a thoroughly researched plan developed by the City Manager that represents in detail the priorities of the City.

Through the budget, the City guides its operations to meet the demands and requirements of the community.