City Government Departments & Offices
The Alexandria City Council is composed of a Mayor and six Council members who are elected at-large for three-year terms. The Mayor, who is chosen on a separate ballot, presides over meetings of the Council and serves as the ceremonial head of government. Council members traditionally choose the person receiving the most votes in the election to serve as Vice Mayor. The Council's functions include, but are not limited to: reviewing and approving the annual budget; establishing long and short-term objectives & priorities for the City; establishing tax rates and borrowing funds; passing ordinances and resolutions; responding to constituent needs and complaints; and representing the community.
The City Attorney is appointed by the City Council and is the legal advisor to the City Council, City Manager, and all departments, boards, commissions, and agencies of the City. The City Attorney renders opinions, on request; is responsible for drafting ordinances, deeds, affidavits, bonds, leases, and other legal papers; represents the City as counsel in civil cases; and institutes and prosecutes legal proceedings on behalf of the City.
The City Clerk is appointed by Council and serves as its secretary. The Clerk prepares and distributes the docket for Council meetings and keeps minutes. The City Clerk keeps a record of the proceedings of meetings of Council and keeps a record of all approved ordinances and resolutions and reports presented to Council for consideration. All of these records are public records and open to inspection. The Office of the City Clerk is responsible for the production and distribution of dockets and supporting materials for Council meetings.
The Alexandria City Manager is appointed by the City Council to be the chief administrative officer of the City. The City Manager carries out the policy directives of the City Council and manages the daily operations of City government. The City Manager oversees the preparation of the annual operating and capital budgets, an annual report and other such periodic financial and administrative reports as may be required for submission to the City Council. The City Manager appoints all heads of departments and employees of the City, except those in elected, judicial and school positions.
The Department of Code Administration works in partnership with our customers (residents, architects, engineers, contractors, developers, business and building owners) as part of a team dedicated to ensuring the safety of our built environment. Our objective is to work in concert with our customers to administer the provisions of the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Codes (USBC) including the Virginia Construction Code, the Virginia Rehabilitation Code and the Virginia Maintenance code. In addition, we are responsible for ensuring compliance with the City Code nuisance and development provisions. We achieve this by providing world class customer service, efficient and timely plan review; consistent inspections, and proactive education and training of our customers on requirements and purpose of the code.
The mission of the Office of the Commonwealth's Attorney (OCA) is to protect the safety of the community and the rights of its citizens by just enforcement of the law. In protecting the rights of the citizenry and the interests of the community, the office endeavors to exercise prosecutorial discretion in service of the law and not for factional purposes. The office of Commonwealth's Attorney is established by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Virginia. The Code of Virginia states that the Commonwealth's Attorney is a member of the department of law enforcement of the City in which he is elected, and that his primary duty is the prosecution of all criminal and traffic offenses committed against the peace and dignity of the Commonwealth.
The Office of Communications & Public Information fosters open, accountable and effective government by developing, coordinating and delivering meaningful and responsive communications for the community and for City employees.
The Department of Community and Human Services provides effective and essential safety net services that measurably improve or maintain the quality of life for Alexandrians and promote self-determination, recovery and resiliency. The vision of the Department is of a community in which all residents enjoy a sense of well-being, safety and self-sufficiency.
The Clerk of the Circuit Court serves as the keeper of records for all Circuit Court matters, which involves being the "Court of Record" for the City of Alexandria. The department is divided into three divisions, each with their own unique tasks. The Customer Service division handles case intake, issues licenses and permits, processes court related papers and staffs a Customer Service counter. Court Support division processes court orders and criminal case related matters, is the liaison with Circuit Court Judges' Chambers and performs customer assistance duties. The Land Records division records all City real estate transactions and collects transfer-related taxes as well as the collection of court costs and fines. A staff member of each division serves as a Courtroom Clerk for the Circuit Court and has the responsibility of generating a worksheet used for drafting court orders in Criminal proceedings, which is also used by other City departments. All tasks of this department are mandated and performed in compliance with the Code of Virginia.
The Department of Emergency Communications (DEC) ensures the effective delivery of routine and emergency calls for service to the City of Alexandria public safety departments. The mission of DEC is to serve the public by saving lives, protecting property, and providing assistance to the public. Every day, the Emergency Communications staff strives to accomplish this by receiving and dispatching 9-1-1 emergency and non-emergency calls for the Police Department, Fire Department, and Emergency Medical Services in an efficient and professional manner.
The Department of Finance is responsible for the assessment, collection and enforcement of all City taxes; the management of cash flow and investments, accounting for and reporting the City's financial position, processing payroll, executing a fair and competitive procurement environment, assessing all real and personal property in the City, managing the City's risk and safety programs and managing the City's pension plans. The goal of the Finance Department is to treat all employees, citizens and business owners professionally, with fairness and compassion.
The mission of the Alexandria Fire Department is to plan for and deliver responsive and caring emergency service, mitigate emergencies and disasters, prevent the loss of life, protect property and enforce applicable construction, fire, and building maintenance codes for the City residents and the general public in order to maintain and enhance public safety.
Our mission is to provide exceptional management of the City's facilities, fleet, surplus real estate and other support services for all our customers. The Department of General Services staff strives to provide both internal and external customers with unmatched services by responding to service requests in a timely manner, listening to our customers, and ensuring that our customers are satisfied with the resolution.
Alexandria Health Department's (AHD) mission is to protect and promote health and well-being for all Alexandria communities. AHD Public Health Specialty Clinics are essential elements of Alexandria's safety net system. The Prenatal Clinic offers pregnancy and post-partum care and the Nurse Case Management Program serves high-risk pregnant women, infants and children. Preventive Clinic services and programs, unique to AHD, include the Nutrition/WIC Program, Immunization Clinic, Family Planning, Sexually Transmitted Infection Clinic, HIV/AIDS services, and the Tuberculosis Program. The Teen Wellness Center provides health services to Alexandria youth. AHD's Environmental Health Division operates Food Safety, Vector Control and Aquatic Health programs. AHD's Public Health Emergency Management helps Alexandria communities prepare for, respond to and recover from public health emergencies and includes the Medical Reserve Corps. AHD's Epidemiology Program investigates, and offers guidance to prevent and control, communicable diseases; it also analyzes and interprets data to guide program and policy development. AHD's Community Partnerships Program provides research, policy development, and public health leadership to Alexandria organizations and communities so all Alexandrians have an equal opportunity for health.
The Office of Historic Alexandria (OHA) is responsible for the stewardship and promotion of the historic City through the preservation of the City's historic and archaeological sites, artifacts and records, and for the use of these resources in accordance with professional standards of scholarship and museum procedures.
The Office of Housing coordinates and administers City housing and housing-related programs and services. The Office makes recommendations to the City Manager and City Council on housing policy and potential affordable housing opportunities and investments. Major programs administered are Homeownership Assistance, Home Rehabilitation, Energy Efficiency, Landlord Tenant Relations, and Affordable Housing Development. The major policy initiative that the Office is working is the implementation of City's first Housing Master Plan approved in 2013, setting a goal of developing or preserving 2,000 affordable housing units through 2025.
The mission of the Human Resources Department is to be a fair, objective, and strategic partner with the stakeholders of the City of Alexandria, striving for excellence in the work that we do. We support the City in all efforts to recruit, retain and motivate its greatest asset – employees.
The Office of Human Rights is responsible for enforcing the Alexandria Human Rights Code, along with federal and state anti-discrimination laws, and can receive, investigate, mediate, make findings on, and conciliate complaints of discrimination. Through the Enforcement Program and the Community Inclusiveness and Awareness Program, the Office staff strives to enable everyone to share equally in Alexandria's quality of life, to provide services to make the City more welcoming to all people, and to make City government more reflective of the community. The Director works closely with the Human Rights Commission, and coordinates the staffing of the Commission on Persons with Disabilities. The ADA Program Manager ensures that the City's programs, services, policies, and procedures are in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended, by collaborating with City departments, businesses, and nonprofits.
The City's ITS Department is responsible for the centralized operation of the City's information technology services, support and IT infrastructure. The ITS department is organized to provide a flexible, efficient and effective structure to manage information technology operations and investments to support the City's strategic goals, business processes and enterprise-wide information needs.
The nature and purpose of the Office of Internal Audit is to perform independent appraisals of City programs and activities directed toward improving program efficiency, compliance with applicable rules and regulations; and, the prevention of fraud, waste and abuse. Office of Internal Audit staff observe program conditions, analyze and evaluate the operational effectiveness of City and/or State financial management programs, formulate corrective actions for rectifying observed deficiencies, and make written recommendations to the responsible operating officials. Office of Internal Audit staff also supports City departments that are undergoing Federal and State monitoring visits and financial audits. Finally, the Office of Internal Audit administers the City's Ethics and Fraud Hotline.
The Library provides access to information in a variety of formats, as well as various programs and services which contribute to customers' educational, informational, and recreational needs. The Library also builds a better community by providing the opportunity for customers to create, explore, learn, and connect.
The Office of Management & Budget (OMB) prepares the annual operating budget, the capital improvement program, and performs on-going fiscal and management analyses of City programs while conducting research and analysis in such areas as improving operational efficiency and cost effectiveness, performance measures, and organizational structure and processes.
The City of Alexandria is committed to data-driven decision making to deliver efficient and effective services to the community. The Office of Performance and Accountability (OPA) leads this effort by analyzing issues and tracking performance to inform decisions.
The Department of Planning and Zoning works closely with the community in each area of the city to carry out City Council's Strategic Plan for vibrant, amenity-rich neighborhoods, protected historic resources, and vital local businesses. With the community as our partner in developing neighborhood plans and reviewing proposals for development projects and businesses, we continue to deliver on the vision we have developed together.
The Alexandria Police Department is one of the most progressive Police Departments in the country. We are dedicated to provide competent, courteous, professional and community oriented police services. We are committed to maintaining and enhancing a strong and productive partnership with the community to continue to reduce crime and improve the quality of life in all of Alexandria's neighborhoods. Through the use of community-oriented policing, modern technology, and crime analysis, the police department has been able to maintain historic crime lows. Alexandria maintains a modern, highly trained, technically skilled, energetic, diverse and well-equipped police department, with a current authorized strength of 304 sworn and 118 civilian employees. Our technological innovation and applications assist in providing the highest quality service to the communities we serve. The Alexandria Police Department has been internationally accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) since 1986 and was reaccredited in 1991, 1996, 2001, 2004, 2007, 2010 and 2013.
The Department of Project Implementation focuses on the delivery of the City's growing portfolio of complex capital infrastructure projects, shortening the delivery time of these projects through the application of best-practice project management methods. The department is responsible for the implementation of capital infrastructure projects, as well as coordinating and planning complex, multi-departmental projects such as the Waterfront Small Area Plan Implementation and the Potomac Yard Metrorail Station. Project types include multimodal transportation (roadways, transit, bicycle/pedestrian improvements, and bridges), storm water system and water quality improvements, sanitary sewer improvements, flood mitigation and park design.
The Department of Recreation, Parks, and Cultural Activities is comprised of six operating Divisions: Recreation Services; Leadership & Management; Office of the Arts; Park Operations & Natural Resources, Park Planning & Capital Development; and Marketing, Special Events & Waterfront Operations. These six Divisions work to offer the full range of programs, facilities and parks.
The Alexandria Sheriff's Office is responsible for the operation of the Detention Center, courthouse and courtroom security, service of all court legal documents, execution of court orders, transportation of prisoners, execution of arrest warrants, and general public safety and law enforcement.
The Department of Transportation and Environmental Services (T&ES) strives to improve the overall quality of life within the City of Alexandria through the development of a superior infrastructure. In order to contribute to the physical, social and economic growth of the City of Alexandria, the T&ES employee team provides services of the highest quality in the areas of engineering, environmental quality, traffic control, transit, construction, inspection and surveying, street, sewer and fire hydrant maintenance, and, trash, recycling and yard waste collection.
The Office of Voter Registration and Elections is responsible for conducting accurate, fair and transparent elections in Alexandria in accordance with the Constitution and laws of the United States and the Commonwealth of Virginia, and providing Alexandria voters the opportunity to participate in the democratic process. This includes maintaining an accurate list of registered voters, offering convenient absentee voting opportunities, recruiting and training election officers, preparing ballots and voting equipment, managing polling places, and certifying all election results within the City. The Office also verifies candidate nominating petitions and ensures that candidates for local office file on-time campaign finance reports and provide full disclosure of the campaign's financial activities to the public.