The Charter is the Operations Manual for the City’s Government.

  • It empowers the ability to issue debt.
  • It empowers the ability to write local laws (ordinances)
  • It empowers the ability to form departments to take care of the City, including things like:
    • Police
    • Fire
    • Public Works
    • City Clerk
    • Planning
    • Board of Education
    • Permits
    • Parks
    • Tax Collection
  • It defines the selection and roles of the Mayor, the Common Council, and other elected officials, and how they work together.
  • It defines how the City controls land use.
  • It defines how various Boards and Commissions operate, and whether members are elected or appointed (and by whom).
  • It defines the boundaries for property taxation, and which services are funded within those areas.
  • It allows for the formation of governmental Authorities, which take on specific responsibilities and operate semi-independently from the City of Norwalk. Norwalk’s five Authorities are:
    • Parking Authority (Municipal Parking Facilities)
    • Oak Hills Park Authority (Municipal Tennis, Golf and the Park)
    • Water Pollution Control Authority (Sewage Treatment Plant)
    • Maritime Authority (Maritime Aquarium)
    • Housing Authority (Subsidized and Affordable Housing and some Education Services)