Government

In this section you will find useful information about the Government of the City of Griffin and also a brief history of how the City Government was established. Please refer to the links on the left for the information contained in this section.

In the Beginning

In 1840, the first city government of Griffin was founded by General Lewis Lawrence Griffin, and was authorized in 1843 when the General Assembly of Georgia granted it a charter. The charter was accepted locally in 1844 and the first municipal government was established in 1845.

This new municipal government consisted of a Board of Commissioners with Major Henry Moor, an attorney, acting as chairman. After serving later as mayor, Major Moore, with William Dewberry, represented Spalding County at the Secession Convention where both men voted to secede from the Union.

The form of government changed in 1850 to Mayor and City Council with Alexander Moore designated as the first mayor of Griffin. This form of government was followed until December 10, 1918 with J. Woods Hammond being the last mayor.

At that time, Griffin inaugurated a three member commission with one member serving as chairman and providing for a city manager to be employed by the Board of Commissioners. The first city commission was composed of J. W. Gresham, Chairman, R. F. Strickland, Vice-Chairman, and B. B. Brown, Commissioner. The first City of Griffin City Manager was E. P. Bridges.

Profile of the Government

The City of Griffin, was incorporated in 1843, is located in the central portion of the state and currently occupies a land area of 14.1 square miles and a population of just over 23,000 people. The City of Griffin is empowered to levy a property tax on both real and personal properties location within its boundaries. It is also empowered by the State to extend its corporate limits by annexation, which occurs periodically when deemed appropriate by the governing Board.

The City of Griffin operates under a City Manager/Board of Commissioners form of government. Policy making and legislative authority are vested in the governing council, which consists of seven Commissioners. The governing council is responsible, among other things, for passing ordinances, adopting budgets, appointing committees, and hiring both the City's manager and legal council. The City Manager is responsible for carrying out the day to day operations of government and for appointing the heads of the various departments. The Board is elected on a non-partisan basis, and serves staggered terms. Elections are held every two years with three Commissioners on one cycle and four Commissioners the next cycle. The Chairperson is elected by the Board and serves for one year.

The City of Griffin provides a full range of services, including police and fire protection; the construction and maintenance of highways, streets, and other infrastructure; and recreational and cultural activities, including an eighteen hole golf course; and a municipal airport. Also, the City provides water, wastewater, electric, sanitation and stormwater runoff services through its enterprise funds, which function, in essence, as departments of the City.