Rio Dell has a City Council - City Manager form of government. The City Council sets policy while the City Manager carries out the day-to-day business of the City. The Mayor is selected by the City Council and serves as the presiding officer at city council meetings and as the official head of the city for legislative and ceremonial purposes.
City Council Members are elected to four year terms. Terms are staggered and every two years either 2 or 3 members are up for re-election.