Government and politics

Learn how to contact your elected officials and participate in local and regional government. Use online resources to explore the issues.

Your government

Use your address on My Reps to identify and contact your city, county, state, and federal elected officials.

If you need help identifying your local officials Ask Us.

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Hennepin County is made up of 45 cities. Search a city's website to learn about the mayor, city council, park board, and opportunities to participate in citizen advisory boards and commissions.

Find your city on this list

Public school boards

Hennepin County has 22 independent school districts, with each district supported by a school board made up of five to seven community members who serve four-year terms. These boards hire and evaluate the superintendent, approve budgets, set spending priorities, approve textbooks and other curriculum materials, adopt the annual school calendar, make decisions regarding opening and closing schools, and more. 

Find your school district on this list and then look for information about the school board on the district website.

Metropolitan Council

The Met Council is responsible for supporting the economic and strategic growth for the seven county Twin Cities metro area. The governor appoints 17 residents to represent 16 districts for four-year terms. This regional council makes policies, plans projects, and provides essential services. It manages Metro Transit, wastewater collection and treatment, regional parks, affordable housing, and other public services. 

Find your district council member using your address.

Three Rivers Park District

The Park District is governed by an independent seven-member board of commissioners who generally serve four-year terms. Five members of the board are elected from districts in suburban Hennepin County, and two members are appointed by the Hennepin County Board of Commissioners. The park board promotes environmental stewardship through recreation and education in over 27,000 acres of parks and trails, and sets goals, formulates policies, and establishes services to meet the current and future needs of the community.

Learn more about the board of commissioners.

Board of commissioners

Hennepin County has seven commissioners who serve four-year terms. The board enacts and enforces local ordinances, approves budgets, oversees spending, and hires county employees. Their duties are defined by the state constitution and state statutes.

Find your commissioner using the district map.

Elected officials

The sheriff is elected to a four-year term and manages the county jail and secures the district court, while also developing broader initiatives to build community.

The county attorney is elected to a four-year term and manages the largest public law office in Minnesota, grouped into the Civil Division and Criminal Division.

Office of the county administrator

The mission of county administration is to implement county board policies, promote county interests with other government agencies and partners, and provide direction to departments to achieve the county's overarching goals. The county administrator, appointed by the Hennepin County Board of Commissioners, makes recommendations to the board, implements its policies, provides leadership to the organization and assures effective delivery of county services.

Learn more about county administration, including all appointed officials.

Citizen advisory boards

Members of the public and local officials can be appointed to serve on more than 15 county advisory boards, task forces and committees. These groups advise county commissioners on issues and programs, help set policy, and deal with a variety of topics of concern to the county. You can subscribe to get email alerts about new openings.

Learn more about county advisory boards, task forces and committees.

Senators and representatives

Senators are elected for four-year terms in years ending in 2 and 6, and for two-year terms in years ending in 0, serving in what is known as the upper house. There is one senator for each of Minnesota's 67 Senate districts. Senators have more constituents than representatives do. They create bills, approve laws, trial impeached public officials, and confirm executive appointments. 

Representatives serve two-year terms and represent 134 districts, serving in what is known as the lower house. A Senate district is divided in half to create a Representative's district. Representatives can create bills, initiate revenue-generating bills, and impeach public officials. 

Districts are redrawn after the decennial United States Census in time for the primary and general elections in years ending in 2

Find your state representative and state senator using your address.

State officials and organizations

The Minnesota Government Portal identifies the governor, the secretary of state, the attorney general, the state auditor, and Minnesota members of Congress, as well as state-supported institutions, and agencies, boards and commissions. Explore their websites to learn more about what they do and how to contact them. 

Find information on elected officials and state agencies.

Tribal government

In Minnesota, there are seven Anishinaabe (Chippewa, Ojibwe) reservations and four Dakota (Sioux) communities. Tribal nations are sovereign governments, which means that each relates to the U.S. as a separate and independent nation with all the rights and powers of self-government. Each tribe determines their own governance structure, passes laws, and enforces those laws through their own police departments and tribal courts. They often provide programs and services for their communities, including social programs, first-responder services, education, workforce development, energy and land management, and the building and maintenance of infrastructure such as roads, bridges, and public buildings.   

Find the elected leaders for each community under MN Tribal Nations on the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council site.

Governor’s citizen advisory boards

Minnesota residents can apply to be on one of over 130 boards, commissions, task forces and advisory councils. Some groups advise the state on policy areas while others regulate key industries and professions. You can subscribe to get email alerts about new openings.

Learn more about participating in boards and commissions.

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Online resources

Catalog of U.S. Government Publications

Print and electronic publications from all branches of the U.S. Government.

CQ Magazine

Full-text articles covering each week in Congress including bill status, vote reports, and updates on all committees. Goes back to October 1983.

CQ Researcher

Current and controversial issues with detailed discussions of pros and cons, summaries, bibliographies, and links to related stories. Goes back to 1923.

Gale In Context: Opposing Viewpoints

Social issues covered by pro/con viewpoint essays, topic overviews, primary sources, biographies, court-cases, articles, statistics, charts and graphs, images, and podcasts.


Official Federal Government documents and publications available online in multiple digital renditions or file formats.

Points of View Reference Source

Essays on controversial topics that examine multiple sides of current issues. Includes charts, graphs, and research guides. Middle/high school level.

ProQuest Congressional

Full-text of bills available. U.S. Congress publications indexed and abstracted. Goes back to 1789.

Book lists

A selection of titles in the library collection.