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Every city in the United States requires the services of local officials. In some cases, the services of a small town or suburb may be overseen by the government of a larger city or by the county government. According to the National Association of Counties, 48 states have operational county governments—a total of over 3,069 counties. (Conn. and R.I. are the only two states without counties.) Counties range in size from the 82 residents in Loving County, Tex., to the more than 9.8 million residents of Los Angeles County in Calif. There are also about 40 governments that are consolidations of city and county governments; New York, Denver, and San Francisco are among them.

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