The Pilgrims brought the Township form of government to America in 1620 and Townships are found in twenty-two states today. In Ohio, Townships predate state government and townships were typically five or six miles square in size.
Today, the township remains a political subdivision of the state. To keep pace with the demands of changing times, the functions, duties and obligations of townships have changed over the years. Demands for increased or different services have prompted the state legislature to grant Ohio’s 1,308 townships the authority to fulfill these changing needs. Ohio was admitted to the Union in 1803 then in 1804, Townships were established as the basic form of local government.
Champion Township operates under the township form of government, which is the oldest form of government in the United States and the one closest to the people.The township is governed by a three-member board of trustees two of which are elected in November of the year after the presidential election. One is elected in November of the year before the presidential election. There is also an elected Township Fiscal Officer, who serves a term beginning on April 1st of the year after the election, which is held in November of the year before the presidential election. The three Trustees have the legislative authority of the township, and the Fiscal Officer, has all of the fiscal responsibilities of the Township.
The Trustees decide issues of township policy and are responsible for all expenditures of funds. Some of the duties of the board include adopting the annual budget, serving as a board of finance and approving township contracts. Township trustees do not hold regular offices hours. They fulfill their duties on a part-time basis. However, because they live in the community, they are more readily available to their constituents. They are more able to deal with problems that arise in the township because of their intimate knowledge of the community, its needs and its people.
The Fiscal Officer is an elected, non-voting, independent member of the Board of Trustees. The Fiscal Officer has all of the fiscal responsibilities of the Township, including paying bills, payrolls, and receiving revenue as it is distributed to the Township and must comply with all legal requirements set forth in the Ohio Revised Code for the duties of this office. The Fiscal Officer's responsibilities also include keeping accurate record of the proceedings of board of township trustee meetings.
Township government offers more personal service, more attention to individual needs, and a better understanding of local problems than any other unit of government. It is able to do this at low cost and with a minimum of red tape because it is closest to those it serves.