Author: ARDELEANU KONSTANTIN
Until 1877 the local administration of Constanţa functioned within the framework of Ottoman laws. Since 1878 the Romanian authorities imposed a provisional organisation in the province of Dobrudja, including in the town of Constanţa. Dobrudja was initially divided into three counties, but it was rapidly reorganised into only two counties – Tulcea and Constanţa. Until 1880, when a special “Law for the Organisation of Dobrudja” was introduced, the prefects appointed by the central government enjoyed full political and administrative powers in these two counties. The prefect appointed the mayors of all urban and rural communes from among elected communal councillors, he could revoke them, dissolve the Communal Councils (Consiliu comunal) and organise new elections, and he approved the budgets of all Communal Councils.
The urban commune of Constanţa was the capital of the homonymous county. Public administration was led by a Communal Council, and its actual management was entrusted to a mayor (primar). The Communal Council consisted of members elected by Romanian citizens who paid due taxes to the state. The mayor had a double quality: chief of the communal administration and representative of the central administration. He chaired the meetings of the Communal Council, communicated to the prefect cases beyond the Council’s competence, and as chief of the local administration was responsible with the communal budget, the administration of the communal proprieties, the control of local administration etc. He was also entrusted with the police, the preservation of public tranquillity and the imposition of measures of public wellbeing for all inhabitants .
The domestic affairs of the county of Constanţa were decided by the County Council (Consiliul Judeţean). It had 12 members among whom the government appointed a president for a term of a year. The general administration of the county and the direct representation of the central government at a local level were entrusted to the prefect. The County Council was summoned in an ordinary session once a year, and in extraordinary sessions whenever necessary .
Dobrudja was only fully united administratively to Romania in the early 1910s, when all local institutions became similar to those from the rest of the country. It was only then that Romanian citizens from this province were allowed to vote for parliamentary elections and to send their representatives to the Romanian Parliament.
 Istoria dreptului românesc, edited by Dumitru Firoiu and Liviu P. Marcu, vol. II, part 1 (Bucharest: Editura Academiei Republicii Socialiste România, 1984), 81; Mariana Cojoc, Constanţa – port internaţional. Comerţul exterior al României prin portul Constanţa 1878–1939 (Bucharest: Cartea Universitară, 2006), 44–49; details in Georges G. Angelesco, Etude sur la Dobrogea au point de vue de l’organisation des pouvoirs public (Paris: Arthur Rousseau, 1907).
 Istoria dreptului, II/1, 82–83; details also in Sorin Plopeanu, Emanuel Plopeanu, “Unele consideraţii privind legislaţia procesului de integrare a Dobrogei la România”, in vol. Dobrogea 1878–2008. Orizonturi deschise de mandatul european, edited by Valentin Ciorbea (Constanţa: Ex Ponto, 2008), 213.
Official site of the Prefecture of Constanţa
Official site of the Municipality of Constanţa
Serviciul Judeţean Constanţa al Arhivelor Naţionale (The National Archives, Constanţa Branch), Prefectura Judeţului Constanţa (The Prefecture of Constanţa County), files starting with 1897.
Serviciul Judeţean Constanţa al Arhivelor Naţionale (The National Archives, Constanţa Branch), Primăria municipiului Constanţa (The Municipality of Constanţa), files starting with 1878.
Angelesco, Georges G., Etude sur la Dobrogea au point de vue de l’organisation des pouvoirs public (Paris: Arthur Rousseau, 1907).
Cojoc, Mariana , Constanţa – port internaţional. Comerţ exterior al României prin portul Constanţa 1878–1939 [Constanţa – International Port. Romania’s Foreign Trade through the Port of Constanţa 1878–1939] (Bucharest: Cartea Universitară, 2006).
Coman, Virgil, “Studiu de caz: regulamentul pentru administraţia interioară a Constanţei din 1879” [Case Study: The 1879 Regulation for the Interior Administration of Constanţa], in vol. Studii istorice dobrogene [Historical Studies on Dobrudja], edited by Valentin Ciorbea (Constanţa: Ovidius University Press, 2003), 95–103.
Firoiu, Dumitru, Liviu P. Marcu (editors), Istoria dreptului românesc [History of Romanian Law], vol. II, part 1 (Bucharest: Editura Academiei Republicii Socialiste România, 1984).
Plopeanu, Sorin, Plopeanu, Emanuel, “Unele consideraţii privind legislaţia procesului de integrare a Dobrogei la România” [Some Remarks Regarding the Legislation of the Process of Dobrudja’s Integration to Romania], in vol. Dobrogea 1878–2008. Orizonturi deschise de mandatul european [Dobrudja 1878–2008. Open Horizons by the European Mandate], edited by Valentin Ciorbea (Constanţa: Ex Ponto, 2008), 209–216.