Detroit City Code & City Ordinances

DESCRIPTION OF PROCESS FOR ENACTMENT
AND POSTING OF CITY ORDINANCES

 

The 2019 Detroit City Code is posted online by the Municipal Code Corporation at https://library.municode.com/mi/detroit/codes/code_of_ordinances.  The City’s Page contains both the 2019 Detroit City Code (The Table of Contents is on the left) and “Adopted Ordinances Not Yet Codified” (As new ordinances are enacted they are posted on the right.)  A user is able to access the 2019 Detroit City Code by clicking on the applicable portion of the Table of Contents on the left-hand side of the City’s Page.  Further, a user is able to access the provisions of any newly-enacted ordinance that is not yet inserted into the 2019 Detroit City Code by clicking on the ordinance as listed on the right-hand side of the City’s Page under “Adopted Ordinances Not Yet Codified.”             

The enactment of a City ordinance involves many entities and persons, including the City Council and its divisions, the Mayor and his departmental personal, the Corporation Counsel and his staff, the City Clerk and her staff, the Detroit Legal News, and the Municipal Code Corporation.  As a result, the actual time that is required for an ordinance to be enacted as City law varies.  However, once an ordinance is enacted as City law, the time that is required for an ordinance to be posted online is approximately four weeks.   

Generally, these are the necessary steps for enactment and posting online of a City ordinance:    
(1)       Once the drafting of a proposed ordinance is completed, the proposed ordinance is approved as to form by the Corporation Counsel;

(2)       The proposed ordinance is transmitted to the City Clerk and referred to the City Council for placement on the Body’s Formal Agenda;  

(3)       At a formal session, the City Council refers the proposed ordinance to the appropriate City Council Standing Committee for discussion and consideration;

(4)       After discussion and consideration, the City Council Standing Committee moves the proposed ordinance to the City Council’s Formal Agenda for introduction and scheduling a public hearing at the Standing Committee;

(5)       A notice is for the public hearing is published by the City Clerk in the Detroit Legal News at least 5 days prior to the public hearing, except for zoning ordinances, which by state law are required to be published 15 days prior to the public hearing;

(6)       After the public hearing at the Standing Committee, the Committee moves for the proposed ordinance to be placed on the City Council Formal Agenda for a vote;

(7)       At the Formal Session, the City Council may pass the ordinance by a vote of at least a majority of members present;

(8)       Within four days of passage, the proposed ordinance is transmitted by the City Clerk to the Mayor for his approval or veto, which must be made within seven days of his receipt;

(9)       In the event that the Mayor vetoes the proposed ordinance, the City Council may reconsider the ordinance at a regular or special meeting that must held within one week of receipt of the veto from the Mayor.  The City Council by a vote of two-thirds of members serving may pass the proposed ordinance over the Mayor’s veto;       

(10)     Where the Mayor approves and returns the proposed ordinance to the City Clerk, or where the Mayor’s veto is overturned, a Committee Clerk assigns a number to the proposed ordinance, prepares a “Notice of Enactment,” which contains the complete text of the ordinance, and causes the proposed ordinance to be published in the Detroit Legal News;

(11)     Where the City Council passes the ordinance by a two-thirds vote of members present, the ordinance will become immediately effective upon publication but where the City Council passes the ordinance by less than a two-thirds vote of members present, the ordinance will not become effective when published until 30 days after passage;

(12)     After publication of the Notice of Enactment, the Committee Clerk proofreads the galleys of the published ordinance to ensure correctness.  Upon completion, the Committee Clerk provides the Detroit Legal News with an “Okay to Print;”

(13)     After receipt of an “Okay to Print,” the Detroit Legal News prints 50 copies of the ordinance in pamphlet form, which are shipped to the Office of City Clerk for storage, filing, and distribution as requested, to City elected officials, appointees and employees, and to members of the Public.  Simultaneously, the Detroit Legal News forwards a copy of the ordinance in pamphlet form to the Municipal Code Corporation, which, within 24-48 hours after receipt, posts the ordinance on the City’s Page on the right-hand side under “Adopted Ordinances Not Yet Codified;” and

(14)     Three times a year, the Municipal Code Corporation prepares a supplement, which codifies ordinances that were enacted, respectively, during at the Months of January through April, May through August, and September through December and are contained on the right-hand side of the City’s Page.  Each supplement updates the online and printed versions of the 2019 Detroit City Code.  All ordinances that are codifies into the 2019 Detroit City Code are removed from the list that is contained under “Adopted Ordinances Not Yet Codified” but retained on the City’s Page under the City’s “Ordbank.”