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Ayuntamiento is the general term for the council of a municipality, or sometimes the municipality itself, in Spainmarker and Latin America. Historically Ayuntamiento was often preceded by the word excelentísimo (English: "most excellent"), when referring to the council. This phrase is often abbreviated

In the Catalan speaking parts of Spain, municipalities generally use the Catalan cognate, Ajuntament, whereas in the Galician ones it is used the word Concello and in Asturleonese language Conceyu. Ayuntamiento is mainly used in Spainmarker; in Latin America Alcaldía is also used to describe municipal governing bodies, especially the executive ones, where the legislative body and an executive one are two separate entities.

In Latin America several terms exist for the legislative bodies of municipalities. The term consejo is used in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, and Peru. In Mexico the term ayuntamiento is used to describe the council. Puerto Rican municipalities have a Legislatura Municipal . Executive functions in most of these countries is handled by an executive alcalde (not to be confused with the historic alcalde, who was a magistrate).

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