Departments & Officials

The Department of Aeronautics manages and operates the Gerald R. Ford International Airport and maintains its own police, fire and maintenance departments.

The Board of Commissioners is responsible for approving general annual budgets of other County officials, raising money to fund County operations, and representing the County through the adoption of rules, regulations and policies; among many other services.

The Bureau of Equalization carries out both property appraisal and mapping functions on behalf of taxpayers and municipalities in Kent County.

The Central Services department provides the following services to County departments: printing, microfilming, messenger, mail processing, and a secure records storage space.

The Community Development Department is responsible for distributing the Federal Community Development Block Grant program to most communities in Kent County. The Community Development Department is responsible for splitting the grant money between communities.

The Administrator's Office is responsible for assisting the Board in meeting identified goals; developing annual budget recommendations; preparing agenda items for the Board of Commissioners; developing procedures to accompany Board policies; providing legal counsel in all legal County matters; conducting program, departmental, and management analyses; coordinating the pursuit of the Board's legislative agenda; and providing general administrative support.

The Clerk issues, indexes, and records vital records, such as marriage licenses, birth certificates, and death certificates. As Register of Deeds, this position is responsible for receiving, recording and reproducing all documents affecting real property ownership. The Clerk is also responsible for all election activities in Kent County. As Clerk of the Court, the County Clerk receives, indexes & maintains all Circuit Court files and collects all court fines, costs and victim restitution payments.

The Office of the Drain Commissioner maintains the Kent County drains and storm water detention ponds. They also assist in watershed studies.

The County Clerk oversees all elections conducted in Kent County with respect to Michigan and Federal election law.

Facilities management provides technical and managerial support for Kent County buildings and properties. They are also involved in the sale and purchase of County property and real estate.

Fiscal Services manages County accounting, budgets and payroll; the department provides the County's annual financial report and audit.

The department manages many County department vehicles, mostly related to law enforcement or court functions. Fleet Services provides scheduled vehicle maintenance, provides fuel and maintains vehicle and parts inventory.

A geographic information system (GIS) integrates hardware, software, and data for capturing, managing, analyzing, and displaying all forms of geographically referenced information. A GIS helps us visualize, question, analyze, interpret, and understand data to reveal relationships, patterns, and trends.

The Health Department provides information and services to citizens of Kent County in an effort to promote public health. The Health Department provides preventative services, such as vision and hearing screening for citizens.

The department provides rental assistance for low income families through the Section 8 Housing Choice program. The Housing Commission also provides the Family Self-Sufficiency program, which assists welfare participants in obtaining and keeping employment.

Human Resources is responsible for hiring, and providing services for, County employees; the department maintains efforts to sustain a diverse work force, and provides training and development programs for employees.

The Department of Human Services (DHS) is Michigan's public assistance, child and family welfare agency. DHS directs the operations of public assistance and service programs through a network of over 100 county offices around the state.

The Information Technology (IT) department provides and manages software, hardware and telecommunication systems for use by County departments.

The John Ball Zoological Garden is a unique, educational experience where visitors can learn about the world's amazing wildlife and wild places. It is open daily from March 1 - October 31.

The Michigan State University Extension provides information relating to locally-identified issues. The Kent/MSU Extension provides Agriculture, Horticulture, and Natural Resource programs, as well as education programs including waste management, financial planning and farm management information.

The Parks Department manages and maintains the 37 county parks; the department provides detailed park information, including shelter types and availability, park operation hours, admission and reservation fees.

The Prosecutor's Office is a representative for the State or County in Circuit or District Court cases.

The Department of Public Works provides solid waste management services, and also provides permits and inspections for residential water and sewer systems. The department maintains the solid waste disposal sites, recycling facilities and the waste-to-energy facility.

The Purchasing Department is responsible for procuring goods and services for the County departments. The department provides requests for bids, proposals and quotes, and is also responsible for the sale of surplus county goods.

The Register of Deeds (who in Kent County, also serves as the County Clerk) records and indexes all documents related to property in Kent County; the department provides real property records dating back to 1970 for purchase online.

The Kent County Road Commission is responsible for maintaining County roads; the Road Commission provides road closure and construction information.

The Treasurer collects lodging and delinquent real property taxes and manages other County funds received.

The Kent County Department of Veterans Affairs provides financial assistance to veterans or their widow/widower.