FAQs about Joining ICMA

Following are some common questions about ICMA and its membership application process.

Membership Categories

Who can be a member of ICMA?

Any individual with an interest in local government leadership and management can join ICMA. Nature of employment and position determine your membership category, dues rate, and benefits.

What are ICMA's membership categories?

Full membership is designated for chief administrative officers (CAOs) whose scope of responsibility meets these six criteria: appointment, policy formulation, budget, appointing authority, organizational relationships, and qualifications; assistant/deputy chief administrative officers; and other senior-level staff in local government who have significant administrative duties and report to a CAO whose position meets the six aforementioned criteria.

Affiliate membership is for any person who does not meet the qualifications for the above full membership category, including entry- to mid-level local government employees, local government department heads, and full-time interns.

Academic membership is for full-time professors and full-time students not working for a local government.

Other/Non-Local Government membership is for private and nonprofit sector employees, federal/state government employees, honorary members, and Life members.

ICMA membership is for individuals and is not transferrable.

Honorary membership is conferred by the ICMA Executive Board and recognizes individuals outside the local government profession who have contributed to the improvement of local government. Individuals can not join under this category.

Membership Dues

  • New memberships will not be established without dues payment in full.
  • All payments must be made in U.S. currency (VISA, MC, AMEX accepted).
  • Purchase orders are not considered payment. However, if your local government requires a purchase order prior to payment, please contact our Finance Department at 202-962-3678.
  • Membership may not be transferred from one person to another. ICMA is a professional association and membership belongs to the individual, not the employer.
  • ICMA will not refund dues if a member leaves current employment; membership travels with the individual to his or her next position.

How are annual dues calculated?

United States

  • Local Government Professionals
  • Academics
    • Full-time students (whose primary occupation is going to school) and who do not work full time for a local government, nonprofit, or private sector: $25 (or join for free through a participating student chapter).
    • Full-time college or university professors: $165.
  • Others
    • Private sector, nonprofit, federal, and state employees: $200.
    • Retired: $50.
    • Life  (may not join at this level): Complimentary membership, with the option of paying a $25 annual service charge to receive the printed version of Public Management magazine.

Outside the United States (International Membership)

Dues below apply regardless of member category:

  • Canada
    • CAMA Member: US$135.
    • Non-CAMA Member: US Fees.
  • United Kingdom
    • SOLACE Member: US$105.
    • Non-SOLACE Member: US$135.
  • High-income Countries: US$135.
  • Low- and middle-income Countries: US$70.
  • Full-time students/local government interns: US$25.
  • Retired: US$50.
  • Life (may not join at this level).

Check out the World Bank website to determine if your country is a low- or high-income country.

What is meant by deferred compensation?

Deferred compensation includes pre-tax contributions made by your employer on your behalf to a qualified 457 B plan.

What about dues refunds?

Since membership is not transferable, ICMA will not provide a dues refund if a member leaves current employment.

What are the payment options?

  • Check or money order: Download a member application from icma.org/join. Mail the completed application and payment in U.S. currency to: ICMA Membership Payments, P.O. Box 79403, Baltimore, MD 21279-0403. This address is a bank lockbox and should be used for membership dues and renewal payments only. Mailed payments should include your membership application.
  • Credit card (American Express, Visa, or MasterCard): You can join or renew online with a credit card at icma.org/join.

Who does ICMA membership belong to?

As a professional association, ICMA membership belongs to you as an individual, not your employing organization. Membership is not transferable. Your ICMA membership travels with you throughout your career and into retirement.

My membership lapsed - How do I reinstate my membership?

To rejoin ICMA after a lapse in membership, complete the Member Reinstatement application and send with check payment to ICMA. Dues can be made with credit card by calling Membership at 202-962-3680 or 1-800-745-8780.

Professional and Demographic Information 

Can I attach a resume in place of listing my employment history?

Yes, positions should be in reverse chronological order, starting with your current employer. Include start and end dates, year, month, and day for each position listed. These dates determine voting and service award eligibility. Work history is used to ensure a complete and accurate listing in Who's Who, our online directory. You can update your job history by logging into your ICMA account on the website.

How does this information help ICMA?

Better data helps us make better decisions. In an effort to help us provide you with the programs, services, and resources you need, we want to know a little more about you. We also collect data that helps ICMA measure the progress of our efforts to build a more diverse profession and association. Data on gender, race, ethnicity, and age is private. This data will not appear in your public profile nor is it shared externally. It is only used in the aggregate.

Will my membership information be kept confidential?

Each member’s professional and educational history and home telephone number are published in the Who’s Who online directory. Any demographic statistics regarding ICMA members are only published in aggregate form. You can opt to hide your birth date from public view.

Code of Ethics

What is the significance of the ICMA Code of Ethics?

The Code has governed members' professional and personal conduct since 1924 and is a foundation of the association and the local government management profession. ICMA provides ongoing education regarding the Code of Ethics, which is aggressively enforced by a peer review process that involves investigating complaints and recommending sanctions for Code violations. By signing the membership application, you agree to abide by the ICMA Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Enforcement.

Do I have to endorse the ICMA Code of Ethics?

ICMA encourages all members to actively endorse the Code of Ethics by providing an endorsing signature on their membership application. However, all members are bound to the Code of Ethics and the Rules of Procedure for Enforcement. Members working for local government in appointed positions are subject to the provisions of Tenets 1 through 12; members working outside of local government are subject to the provisions of Tenets 1 and 3.

Effective Date

When will I receive new member material?

Expect e-correspondence from ICMA regarding your new membership within one week of joining. New members will receive information about ICMA’s resources at 30, 60, and 90 days to orient them with ICMA membership. However, members are encouraged to reach out to membership@icma.org for any membership-related questions. Non-student members residing in the United States will also receive a welcome packet via mail.

Will I be listed in Leadership Matters?

Applicants for full membership are listed in Leadership Matters, ICMA's weekly membership e-newsletter, and if no written objection has been received after 60 days, the applicant will be formally admitted to membership.

 

Contact Us!

 

ICMA (Headquarters)

777 N Capitol Street, NE, Suite 500, Washington, DC 20002-4201

Phone: 800-745-8780 or 202-962-3680 

Email: membership@icma.org

ICMA (Bank Lockbox)

ICMA Membership Payments, P.O. Box 79403, Baltimore, MD 21279-0403

Join Online at www.icma.org/join

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