​​​​​Assembly 101


What We Do​

Similar to the U.S. Congress and the Alaska Legislature, we are the Municipality of Anchorage's legislative body. We're a twelve-member body elected by the voters of the Municipality of Anchorage, representing districts from Eklutna to Girdwood​. The Assembly:

  • ​Sets municipal policy through enactment of laws (ordinances) and approval of resolutions.
  • Approves annual budgets and appropriates money. 
  • Confirms all appointments to municipal boards and commissions. 
  • Certifies municipal elections. 
  • Evaluates the overall efficiency and effectiveness of municipal operations
  • Listens to concerns and suggestions from citizens of the Municipality. Contact us

Each Assembly Member is elected by district and serves a three-year term. There are established six election districts, each with representation from two Assembly members. The geographic boundaries of the districts are described in AO No. 2022-37(S-1), As Amended, the latest ordinance providing for reapportionment of the Assembly election districts (AMC 2.25.010).

The Municipality of Anchorage derives its powers from its 1975 Home Rule Charter and operates under the Anchorage Municipal Code and Code of Regulations, and the Constitution of the State of Alaska and its laws. Alaska Statute Title 29 establishes the policy of maximum local self-government and as a home-rule municipality, the legislative power of the Municipality of Anchorage is vested in the Anchorage Assembly. The Municipality of Anchorage has a system of checks and balances that is written into its Charter. The Assembly is separate from the Mayor's administration but is an equal partner in how our Municipality is run. So, for example, while the Mayor has the option of vetoing items approved by the Assembly, the Assembly can override the Mayor's veto with a super-majority of 8 votes. 


Assembly Priorities and Vision

As the legislative branch of the Municipality of Anchorage, the Anchorage Assembly is charged with setting policy for the Municipality.​ Every year, the Assembly sets a vision and workplan for the year and issues a report of the past year's accomplishments. Learn more about the current priorities and recent actions​.

Regular Assembly Meetings

The Anchorage Assembly meets in regular session at least twice a month. All Assembly meetings are open to the public. Regular Meetings are held in the Assembly Chambers at Loussac Library, typically on Tuesday evenings beginning at 5 p.m. View the Assembly Calendar. Meeting agendas and documents and recordings of past meetings can be found here. Copies of the agenda and addendum may also be obtained in advance at the Municipal Clerk's Office on the Friday afternoon before the Tuesday meeting. On the evening of the meeting, copies of the current agenda may be found near the doors to the Assembly Chambers.  

Special Meetings and Executive Sessions

The Chair of the Assembly, five Assembly Members, or the mayor may call a special meeting outside of the regular meeting schedule. Special meetings are called when the amount of business needed to complete exceeds the time allowed for a regular meeting, or when a specific topic needs to be addressed in a timely manner.

By ordinance, the Assembly must conduct the Municipality's business in public; however, either the Assembly or the mayor may call an "executive session" to address certain issues confidentially. Issues which warrant an executive session are pending litigation, personnel matters which tend to defame or injure the reputation of persons, or issues that, if immediately disclosed, would tend to adversely affect Municipal finances (AMC 2.30.030K). The Assembly may take no official action in an executive session.

 

Worksessions and Committee Meetings

Most of the Assembly's legislative work happens in committee meetings and worksessions. 
  • Worksessions are a chance for the full Assembly to take a deep dive on a specific topic and often include subject matter experts from the municipal administration or community. 
  • Committees are organized around topics such as Public Safety, Community and Economic Development, and Budget and Finance. Committees discuss proposed ordinances, receive updates from agency representatives, and hear feedback from community members like you. 
Work sessions and committee meetings are open to the public and typically take place at the Assembly Conference Room at City Hall (632 W. 6th Ave, Ste. 155), at municipal facilities, or online on Microsoft Teams.

Participate

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​Meeting Agendas

​Guide to Testimony

Co​​mmittees

Worksessions

Rules of Assembly Meetings

The Anchorage Assembly runs meetings using Robert's Rules and Title 2 (the Legislative Branch) of the Municipal Code. The Assembly is also governed by the Alaska Government Meetings Public Statute, known as the Open Meetings Act. The benefits of these rules:

  • They ensure that meetings are run efficiently and fairly.
  • They protect the public's right to know and their opportunity to be heard.
  • They keep the body nonpartisan, ensuring that all Assembly Members have a forum to speak and suggest actions to be taken, even if their views are not supported by the majority.
The Open Meetings Act dictates that no more than three Assembly Members can hold a meeting or email each other on a specific topic without creating a public meeting that is posted for public notice and open to the public. This means that they cannot count votes or coordinate with more than two members outside of their scheduled meetings, which is why so much of what seems like routine internal business is conducted out in the open in public meetings.

All business of the Assembly is conducted through parliamentary procedures. A motion is made by an Assembly member and seconded by another member. Once a motion has been seconded, it may be discussed and then approved or disapproved. For a motion to pass, at least seven of the possible twelve votes must be in favor. A motion may be postponed for a definite period or tabled for an indefinite period. In order to override the Mayor's veto of an Assembly action, eight votes are needed. The first motion to adopt an ordinance, memorandum, or resolution is called the main motion. Additional motions to change or amend the main motion are considered separately. Passage of any ordinance, memorandum, or resolution may require several votes of the Assembly, as amendments which attempt to change the original document are passed or defeated.    

Actions of the Assembly

The following is a summary of documents that the Assembly takes action on:    

  • ASSEMBLY ORDINANCE (AO)  - Changes Municipal law, appropriates funds for annual operating and capital budgets, and sets the mill levy.
  • ASSEMBLY RESOLUTION (AR) - Appropriates and revises funding, and formalizes an expression of policy or recognition.  
  • ASSEMBLY MEMORANDUM (AM) - Approves recommendations (i.e. bid awards) and summarizes the intent of ordinances and resolutions.   
  • ASSEMBLY INFORMATIONAL MEMORANDUM (AIM)  - Provides the Assembly with requested information and reports.​​

Please go to the Public Portal to Assembly Documents for approved Assembly legislation.

Our History

The​ Municipality of Anchorage is a unified home rule municipality, established in 1975 after a majority of voters in the City of Anchorage and the Greater Anchorage Area Borough (which included Eagle River, Girdwood and Glen Alps) voted to merge. “A home rule municipality is a municipal corporation and political subdivision. It is a city or a borough that has adopted a home rule charter, or it is a unified municipality. A home rule municipality has all legislative powers not prohibited by law or charter." AS 29.04.010. Anchorage encompasses 1,961.1 square miles and contains 40% of Alaska's population. Learn more Assembly historyPast Anchorage Assembly Members.


​​Watch & Learn​

Want to learn more about the Assembly? Check out our Assembly 101 video series​. Education in all things Assembly!

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​​907-343-4311 PO Box 196650, Anchorage, AK 99519-6650​​