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Role of the County Commission


Members of the Shelby County Board of Commissioners work to serve constituents and the county through a myriad of duties that include enacting legislation through resolution or ordinance, approving the county's fiscal budget, setting the County property tax rate, establishing policy, and serving as a voice for the people.  

The chairman of the County Commission serves from September 1 – August 31 and is elected by majority vote of the Commission. Generally, the Commission Chairman is elected in August of each year.  The chairman then assigns commissioners to serve on standing committees of the Shelby County Board of Commissioners with each of the fourteen standing committees having one chairman, one vice-chairman and other designated commissioner members.

The Shelby County Commission consists of thirteen Shelby County Commissioners. Each commissioner serves in Single Member Districts 1 - 13. Districts are assigned representatives based on the district's population, and each commissioner serves their district on the same level.

Commission Terms

The current election term is September 1, 2014 - August 31, 2018. Commissioners are elected for four years and may serve no more than two consecutive terms due to term limits.

Board Responsibilities

Commissioners’ duties are outlined in the Shelby County Charter and Permanent Rules of Order of the Board of County Commissioners of Shelby County, Tennessee. All motions made in committee and all parliamentary or procedural motions made in a meeting of the Commission shall require a majority vote of the Commissioners present and voting yea or nay on such motions for approval. Abstain and recusal votes have no bearing in calculating if an item passes or fails. All motions made to amend or approve items in a Commission meeting or for adoption or disposition of any item shall require a majority vote of the County Commission, unless otherwise required by the Charter of Shelby County or other applicable law.

Citizen Involvement

Shelby Countians are encouraged to be involved. Citizens may write letters or send emails to their County Commissioners to share ideas and concerns. This input helps commissioners know what constituents want and expect from Shelby County Government.  

Committee and Commission meetings are open to the public. The public is welcome to attend meetings and may speak on any agenda item by completing and submitting a Request to Speak Card.

You may contact the County Commission staff to inquire or share information with the Commission. The Commission office's phone number is (901) 222-1000.

Vasco A. Smith, Jr. County Administration Building • (901) 222-2300
160 North Main Street Memphis TN 38103
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