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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A municipality is an administrative entity composed of a clearly defined territory and its population and commonly denotes a city, town, or village, or a small grouping of them. A municipality is typically governed by a mayor and a city council or municipal council.

The notion of municipality includes townships but is not restricted to them. A municipality is a general-purpose district, as opposed to a special-purpose district.

In most countries, a municipality is the smallest administrative subdivision to have its own democratically elected representative leadership. In some countries, municipalities are referred to as "communes" (for example, French commune, Italian comune, Romanian comună, Swedish kommun and Norwegian/Danish kommune). The term derives from the medieval commune. In some countries, especially in the Middle East, the term "municipality" is also used to refer to the municipal administrative building known elsewhere as the town hall or city hall.

The largest municipalities can be found in Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Australia and Brazil.

Municipalities as lower-level governance structures

  • In Brazil, states (estados) are directly divided into municipalities (municípios), and the latter are the smallest political-administrative divisions; there is no equivalent to a county level. A city (cidade) is defined in Brazilian law as the urban seat of a municipality, and a municipality always has the same name as the corresponding city. Brazilian law establishes no difference between cities and towns; all it takes for an urban settlement to be called a "city" is to be the seat of a municipality, and some are very small. Other settlements have no form of local government and are under the authority of the municipality they are in, although in some cases the municipal government may set up local administrative offices there. The Federal District (the area of the national capital city, Brasília) has special status and is not divided into municipalities. The Fernando de Noronha and St. Peter and St. Paul archipelagos together comprise a unique case of a "state district" under the direct administration of the state government of Pernambuco. Apart from these exceptions, all land in Brazil, even the remotest wilderness areas, is in the territory of some municipality, and hence technically under the jurisdiction of a "city." No point in the country is in a non-incorporated area, and this is why some municipalities in sparsely populated areas such as the Amazon region can be larger than many sovereign countries.

First-level entities and other forms of municipalities

See also

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Source material

Up to date as of January 22, 2010

From Wikisource

Municipal
by Rudyard Kipling
Information about this edition
From "Departmental Ditties" (1886)

     "Why is my District death-rate low?"
          Said Binks of Hezabad.
     "Well, drains, and sewage-outfalls are
          "My own peculiar fad.
     "I learnt a lesson once, It ran
          "Thus," quoth that most veracious man: --


It was an August evening and, in snowy garments clad,
I paid a round of visits in the lines of Hezabad;
When, presently, my Waler saw, and did not like at all,
A Commissariat elephant careering down the Mall.

I couldn't see the driver, and across my mind it rushed
That that Commissariat elephant had suddenly gone musth.
I didn't care to meet him, and I couldn't well get down,
So I let the Waler have it, and we headed for the town.

The buggy was a new one and, praise Dykes, it stood the strain,
Till the Waler jumped a bullock just above the City Drain;
And the next that I remember was a hurricane of squeals,
And the creature making toothpicks of my five-foot patent wheels.

He seemed to want the owner, so I fled, distraught with fear,
To the Main Drain sewage-outfall while he snorted in my ear --
Reached the four-foot drain-head safely and, in darkness and despair,
Felt the brute's proboscis fingering my terror-stiffened hair.

Heard it trumpet on my shoulder -- tried to crawl a little higher --
Found the Main Drain sewage outfall blocked, some eight feet up, with mire;
And, for twenty reeking minutes, Sir, my very marrow froze,
While the trunk was feeling blindly for a purchase on my toes!

It missed me by a fraction, but my hair was turning grey
Before they called the drivers up and dragged the brute away.
Then I sought the City Elders, and my words were very plain.
They flushed that four-foot drain-head and -- it never choked again!

You may hold with surface-drainage, and the sun-for-garbage cure,
Till you've been a periwinkle shrinking coyly up a sewer.
I believe in well-flushed culverts. . . .
   This is why the death-rate's small;
And, if you don't believe me, get shikarred yourself. That's all.



musth -- Mad.
shikarred -- Hunted.

PD-icon.svg This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1936, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 70 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.


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