The Clerk-Treasurer is the Chief Financial Officer for the municipal government. No other elected municipal duties are as specifically defined by the law as those of the Clerk-Treasurer. This person is responsible for the overall collection and disbursement of funds, the administration of accounting system, the signing of checks or warrants, the preparation of periodic reports to Council, and will serve as the investment coordinator.
In Indiana, all Clerk-Treasurers are elected for a four-year term of office. Specific duties are defined by the Indiana Code, Municipal Code of Ordinance, directives of the municipal governing body, within the law, and, to some extent, the individual skills and capabilities of the office holder. The Clerk-Treasurer has broad powers to hire and supervise employees and oversee the operation of the municipal budget. The ranking status of the Clerk-Treasurer is on an equal level with the Council and Mayor. The only area in which the Clerk-Treasurer does not have complete authority is setting wages and final approval of budgets.
Frequently, the Clerk-Treasurer and/or staff is a purchasing agent, payroll agent, budget officer, insurance administrator and personnel director.
The office of Clerk-Treasurer has evolved dramatically from bookkeeper and secretary to a “Financial Manager” whose responsibilities impact the financial well-being of the local government.