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Durham, North Carolina

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Durham, North Carolina
Durham Flag.png
General information
Bill Bell1.gif
Mayor:Bill Bell
Mayor party:Nonpartisan
Last mayoral election:2013
Next mayoral election:November 3, 2015
Last city council election:2013
Next city council election:November 3, 2015
City council seats:7
2014-15 FY Budget:$389.9 million
City website
Composition data
Population in 2013:245,475
Gender:52.5% Female
Race:African American 41.0%
White 37.9%
Asian 5.1%
Two or More Races 2.7%
Ethnicity:Hispanic or Latino 14.2%
Median household income:$48,241
High school graduation rate:86.6%
College graduation rate:46.6%
Related Durham offices
North Carolina Congressional Delegation
North Carolina State Legislature
North Carolina state executive offices
Durham is a city in Durham County, North Carolina. As of 2013, its population was 245,475.[1]

City government

See also: Council-manager government

The city of Durham utilizes a council-manager system. In this form of municipal government, an elected city council, which includes the mayor and serves as the city's primary legislative body, appoints a chief executive called a city manager to oversee day-to-day municipal operations and implement the council's policy and legislative initiatives.[2]

City manager

The city manager is the city's chief executive. The responsibilities of the city manager include overseeing the city's day-to-day operations, planning and implementing the city's operating budget and appointing departmental directors and other senior-level positions.[3]


The mayor is a member of city council. He or she presides over council meetings and official city ceremonies. The mayor also represents the city on the state, national and international levels. Bill Bell is the current Mayor of Durham.[4]

City council

The Durham City Council is the city's primary legislative body. It is responsible for adopting the city budget, approving mayoral appointees, levying taxes and making or amending city laws, policies and ordinances.[2]


The Durham City Council is made up of seven members. Three members are elected from the city's three districts, while the mayor and three other members are elected at-large.[2]

A current list of council members can be found here.

Boards and commissions

Twenty-four advisory boards and commissions that are made up of non-elected citizens, whom city council members have appointed and approved, advises the Durham City Council. The roles of these boards and commissions are to review, debate and comment upon city policies and legislation and to make recommendations to the city council.[5]

For a full list of Durham city boards and commissions, see here.



See also: Durham, North Carolina municipal elections, 2015

The city of Durham, North Carolina, will hold elections for mayor and city council on November 3, 2015. A primary will take place on October 6, 2015. The filing deadline for candidates wishing to run in this election is July 2, 2015. Three of the six city council seats are up for election.[6]


Durham's adopted operating budget for fiscal year 2014-15 was $389.9 million.[7]

Contact information

City Council
Office of the City Council
101 City Hall Plaza
Durham, N.C. 27701
Email: Council@DurhamNC.gov

To contact individual council members, see here.

Ballot measures

See also: Durham County, North Carolina ballot measures

The city of Durham is in Durham County. A list of ballot measures in Durham County is available here.

Initiative process

See also: Laws governing local ballot measures in North Carolina

As a charter city, Durham follows the initiative and referendum process dictated by North Carolina General Statutes 160A-104.[8]


As of October 2014, information on Durham's federal lobbying related expenses is unavailable.

City website evaluation

Budget Y
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Elected Officials Y
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Administrative Officials Y
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Permits, zoning Y
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Audits Y
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Contracts Y
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Lobbying N
600px-Red x.png
Public Records P
Local Taxes Y
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School district websitesGuide.png
Transparency grading process

See also: Evaluation of North Carolina city websites

This information was last reviewed: 12/18/12.

The good

  • Budget
    • The current budget is published and previous budgets are available for the last three years[9]
  • Meetings
    • The calendar of meetings and meeting agendas are published,[10]
    • Meeting minutes and agendas are archived dating back to 2006, as are meeting videos.[11][12]
  • Elected officials
    • Names of elected officials, individual email address, individual phone numbers, and a physical address is available[13]
  • Administrative officials
    • Names of administrative officials, individual email address, individual phone numbers, and a physical address is available[14]
  • Planning
    • Permit applications are available for download[15] and zoning ordinances are available
  • Audits
    • The current audit is published and previous audits are available for the last three years[16]
  • Purchasing
    • Bids are posted, including approved contracts over $10,000[17]
  • Taxes
    • Tax revenues and rates are available[18]

The bad

  • Lobbying
    • If the county engaged in lobbying actives or if it's a member of government sector lobbying associations are not disclosed. Nor is the total cost lobbying activities or membership dues for associations available.
    • Although references to lobbying are available in council minutes, employed lobbyists, memberships to lobbying organizations, and associated fees are not available.
  • Public records
    • The public information officer is not identified. Sunshine Review requires a mailing address, phone number and personalized email be listed with this position.
    • Public records request policies and downloadable forms are unavailable, although retention and disposition schedule is available.

See also

Suggest a link

External links