Difference between City and County

Key difference: A city is a large and permanent settlement. A county is geographically larger than a city. Counties contain cities, villages, towns, townships or other municipal corporations.

Cities and counties are mainly just ways of dividing up land geographically for political reasons. It is a method of managing the land’s resources and the population. It is also a way to delegate responsibility. While, there are various ways to distinguish between a city and a county, the easiest is to remember that a county is geographically larger than a city. Usually, the boundaries of a county contain various cities, villages, towns, townships or other municipal corporations.

A city is a large and permanent settlement. It covers a significant area of land that has a shared historical background. Cities may have a particular administrative, legal, or historical status based on local law. Cities usually have their own court systems, law enforcement, fire departments, sanitation services and medical care centers. The chief executive of a city is the Mayor. A city council is a legislative body composed of nine council members. Geographically, the largest city in the world is Tokyo, Japan, while the largest city in the United States is Los Angeles, California.

In modern terminology, county stands for an administrative division of national government. There are counties are all over the world, however, the most commonly known and termed as counties are in the United States. The counties are headed by Commissioners. Counties have a council that is usually made up of seven members, four of which represent the district while the other three represent the entire county. Counties may also have medical centers, a fire department, sanitation services and law enforcement officers. However, these provide services to the entire county as oppose to just a particular city. These services are mainly for use by the small cities that don’t have these necessities or for the areas that lie outside of city jurisdiction. The largest county in the United States is the Los Angeles County in California, which holds the City of Los Angeles.

 

Image Courtesy: aeroplanes.com, co.thurston.wa.us

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