Information for Newly Elected Officials

Congratulations!  You’ve been elected to serve as a municipal official in Oregon. 

While it’s certainly an exciting time and you’ve been given an opportunity to serve your community, you probably have a few questions:

What are your responsibilities as a local elected official in Oregon? 

Are there municipal best practices you should be aware of and follow?

Does state law require you to conduct yourself in any particular manner? 

Are you required to follow federal law in any manner? 

Don’t panic.  LOC is here to help you and your city.

First and foremost, if you have any questions about your role and responsibilities as a municipal official in Oregon, please contact the LOC.  Our staff are seasoned municipal experts who can provide you guidance and support.  And - if our staff doesn’t know the answer, we can find someone who can assist.

Second, spend some time surfing the LOC website.  It’s full of resources that can help you understand your new role and give you guidance on how to successfully maneuver in the municipal world.  Pages that may be of most help to you right away include the Oregon Municipal Handbook, TrainingMember Legal Inquiry Line, and Legislative Advocacy.  To learn more about the LOC, visit the Who We Are to learn about our mission, strategic plan, and meet the Board of Directors; and What We Do for an overview of LOC programs and services. 

Be sure to also check out the guide, Local Government - The Basics.  It is a resource the LOC published covering the 13 essentials for city officials.  Additional publications, including guides, models, FAQs and research reports can be found in the Reference Library.  The Oregon City/County Management Association Civic Education Toolkit provides an overview on the basics of local government and city operations.

Third, sign up for LOC trainings.  There are two training programs geared specifically for newly elected officials. 

  • The Elected Essentials training program provides newly elected officials, experienced elected officials, and city staff with free training on the basics of municipal governance in Oregon.  
  • The Fundamentals training program is a half-day program that provides municipal officials with a low-cost training that covers the basics of municipal governance in Oregon.  The program is almost entirely lecture based and is held at 6 locations across the state.  Fundamentals course are held in years in which Elected Essentials is not offered.

Fourth, attend one of LOC’s highly respected conferences.  LOC hosts a one-day conference each spring and a multi-day conference each fall.  These events are a great opportunity to learn about the issues facing Oregon’s cities, identify solutions to common problems, and network with peers.

Finally, stay in-the-know by subscribing to our weekly LOC Bulletin email newsletter, reading the quarterly Local Focus magazine and following us on Facebook and Twitter.

The LOC is a member organization designed to serve and protect Oregon cities and their elected and appointed officials.  Your LOC staff welcomes you to Oregon local government and encourages you to contact us with any questions.

Looking for municipal resource materials?

The LOC offers a wide variety of resources to help municipal officials support their cities effectively and legally.  Documents include guidebooks, models, FAQs, white papers, and research reports.

Visit the Resource Library