Types of Government in New Jersey

All 565 municipalities in New Jersey, regardless of their form of government, can be classified as belonging to one of five types of municipal government: 1) Borough 2) Township 3) City 4) Town 5) Village.

Forms
All 565 New Jersey municipalities, regardless of type, can be classified under one of the 12 forms of government:

1)
Borough
7)
Council-Manager Act of 1923
2)
Township
8)
OMCL Mayor-Council Plan
3)
City
9)
OMCL Council-Manager Plan
4)
Town
10)
OMCL Small Municipality Plan
5)
Village
11)
OMCL Mayor-Council-Administrator Plan
6)
Commission
12)
Special Charters


The first five forms are associated with a particular type of municipality. Each of these five types has a unique form of government historically associated with it. The next seven forms are "optional" forms of government available for adoption, with the exception of the OMCL Small Municipality Plan (which is available only to municipalities with a population of under 12,000), by all 565 municipalities.

Additional Resources

NJLM Publications

NJLM publishes a printed guides on this topic:

  • NJ 5 Traditional Forms of Government
  • Faulkner Act - NJ Optional Charter Law

Please visit the publication page for information on ordering these guides.

Forms of Government - Everything You always wanted to know, but were afraid to ask

An article authored by Michael Cerra, then Senior Legislative Analyst, which appeared in the March 2007 issue of NJ Municipalities.

Change in New Jersey Municipal Organization

Authored by the Center for Government Services Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy Rutgers University. A discussion of the motivation and methods of changing a form of government and the work of a charter study commission. Click here to view.

New Jersey Databook

This database of information includes statistics on New Jersey's municipalities, legislative districts, counties, schools, elections and people. Published by the Rutgers' Center for Government Services (CGS), registration is required but free.