Iowa residents living in rural areas outside of incorporated cities and towns rely on their local township government to provide vital functions such as fire protection. In addition, townships are responsible for public cemeteries and resolving fence disputes.
Each township is responsible for filing their annual budget with the County Auditor's office, as well as an Annual Financial Report.
Click on the township name below for the names of that township's trustees and clerk.
Iowa Code § 359.17 states that the board of township trustees in each township shall consist of three registered voters of the township. Iowa Code § 39.2(2) states that in townships which include a city, the officers shall be elected by the voters of the township who reside outside the corporate limits of the city, but a township officer may be a resident of the city.
The board of trustees shall meet not less than two times per year, and at least one of those meetings shall be scheduled to meet the requirements of preparing and adopting the township budget. (§ 359.17)
Township trustees are a public body and their meetings must be in compliance with Iowa's open meetings laws, Chapter 21, and records laws, Chapter 22.
|Best practice -- The township should ensure minutes are taken and the clerk and a trustee sign all meeting minutes.
Iowa Code § 359.20 states that the township clerk shall keep a record of all the proceedings and orders of the trustees, and of all acts done by the township clerk. Generally, clerks are required to keep township records and documents for at least five years.
Each clerk shall receive, collect and disburse, under the orders of the township trustees, all funds belonging to the township. A claim shall not be paid until it has been audited by the trustees. (§ 359.21)
Best practice - Functions of receipts, disbursements and reporting should be segregated between the clerk and the Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees should review bank statements, perform reconciliations and examine accounting records on a periodic basis.
A township shall prepare and adopt a budget annually. Notice of the proposed budget must be posted by the county auditor no less than ten nor more than 20 days before the meeting on the proposed budget. After the meeting, the trustees shall adopt a budget and the clerk shall certify the necessary tax levy for the next fiscal year to the county auditor by March 15. (§ 359.49) For late township budgets, the township will be held to the prior year's total property tax dollars (not rate).
On or before September 30 of each year, the clerk shall prepare a statement showing all receipts and disbursements, which shall be certified as correct by the trustees. (§ 359.23)