Minnesota cities are often looking for more effective and efficient ways to provide services to citizens. An agreement on common powers can be a way for cities to achieve efficiency gains. A Joint Powers Authority (JPA) is an entity authorized by the laws of certain U.S. states, where two or more public bodies (for example, local governments. B, or utility or transportation districts) that are not necessarily located in the same state may jointly exercise common authority. Authorities with common powers may be used if: an authority with common powers is different from the member authorities; They have separate works councils. These organizations may be given all the powers inherent in all participating organizations. The authorization agreement specifies the powers that the new authority may exercise. The duration, composition and rules of procedure of the management board of the authority must also be indicated. The joint authority may employ staff and set policies independently of the constituent authorities. Authorities with common powers receive existing powers from governments in formation; This distinguishes them from the special districts, which receive new delegations of sovereign power from the state. It is important to note that an entity with shared powers is not a party covered by the city`s LMCIT liability coverage, unless special agreements have been entered into.
Cities must ensure that each jointly authorizing entity in which they are involved has liability coverage. If this is not the case, the city may end up with a coverage gap if it is sued for something that the Joint Powers Board has done, or if bodily injury or property damage arises from the activities of the Joint Powers Entity. —For more information, see the LMCIT Civil Liability Coverage Guide (pdf) The Joint Powers Act allows Minnesota cities to offer a wide range of services in cooperation with nearby cities, townships, counties, tribes, school districts and others. —Learn more about shared powers and other forms of cooperation in Chapter 16 of the Minnesota Cities Handbook (pdf) If your city sends emergency aid out of state, the city attorney must review the written agreement before using aid. In addition, LMCIT will review the agreements free of charge to ensure that appropriate liability provisions are included in the agreement. —Learn more about the provision of emergency assistance by the government Joint government bodies are statutory entities that allow two or more public bodies to jointly exercise joint powers. The establishment of such bodies can not only provide a creative approach to the provision of public services, but also enable public authorities to provide services more efficiently and cost-effectively. The Joint Exercise of Powers Act, as codified in California Government Code Section 6500, governs JPAs. By law, JPAs are limited to use by public bodies. However, the concept of a public body is very broad. A public authority may include, but is not limited to, the federal government, state or state departments, mutual water companies, public districts, and recognized Native American tribes. The law approves two types of JPA agreements.
The first allows two or more public bodies to conclude contracts in order to jointly exercise common powers. The second allows two or more public bodies to form a separate legal entity. This new company has independent legal rights, including the ability to enter into contracts, hold property, and sue or be sued. The formation of a separate entity may be advantageous because the debts, liabilities and obligations of the APP belong to that entity and not to the parties. To conclude an APA (either to exercise common powers or to form a separate legal entity), public authorities must conclude an agreement. This agreement must specify both the powers of the JPA and the manner in which it is exercised. The governing bodies of all contracting public bodies must approve the agreement. A 2007 report by the Senate Committee on Local Government found that JPAs have played an increasing role in California`s government departments, with more than 1,800 JPAs and more. .