General Responsibilities of Boards, Committees and Commissions
- Advisory boards serve in an advisory capacity to the Mayor and City Council. The information that members provide to the City Council about the community’s needs and interests can have a significant effect on City policies and programs. Most advisory boards do not create or administer policy, programs or services, unless the power is granted to them by City Council.
- Decision-making boards have been established to render decisions on behalf of the Mayor and City Council. They also advise the Mayor and City Council on policy or legislative issues.
For more information about each board please refer to their web pages.
Desirable Characteristics in Applicants
While membership on most City boards and commissions requires no specific qualifications, there are desirable characteristics for which the Council will be looking as they review applications:
- Familiarity with community
- Familiarity with major issues and City initiatives
- Knowledge of the commission - During the application process, applicants should become familiar with the responsibilities and role in the City’s policy-making structure of the board for which they are applying. Agendas and minutes from meetings are available on the web.
- Commitment to serve - When appointed, members are expected to serve their term of office. Members are expected to attend and be well prepared for each meeting. Meeting times are posted on the City’s website. Time commitments vary and members may be requested to serve on sub-committees or participate at City-sponsored events.
- Relationship with the community - Members are required to relate to the community with impartiality and courtesy.
Tips for Applying for a City Board or Commission
- The City receives more applications than the number of vacancies. The appointment process is competitive. These tips can help to make your application stand out.
- Answer all questions on the application. Staff liaisons and City Council review your application to gain an understanding of your background and experience, and what skills and talents you believe you could bring to a particular board, committee or commission.
- Attend one or two meetings of the board, committee or commission for which you are applying. Find out what the current issues are, and what issues may be coming in the future. Review the minutes of past meetings (available on the web).
- Sign up to receive email updates from the board or commission that you are interested in. Meeting agendas and minutes are posted to the web and a reminder of upcoming meetings can be emailed to you.
- Talk to a current member. Current members can share with you their experience, give you an estimate of the time commitment involved, and discuss what they see as current and future issues.
- Talk to the board and commission liaison(s) to the board, committee or commission. Listed on the above-mentioned rosters are City staff members who are assigned to work with the boards, committees and commissions and who can also help you learn more about the function and role of members.
- Find out the City’s priorities and interests. Attend City Council meetings and review meeting minutes. Council meetings are aired on public access television and can be viewed on the City’s website.
- Volunteer to serve on a board and commission sub-committee. Contact the staff liaison to determine where you may be a good fit. Sub-committee volunteers do not require appointment by City Council and volunteers gain an understanding of the board and its function.
- How long does the appointment process take?
- Will I be contacted if I am not appointed?
- After an appointment is made, how will the new member be contacted?
- When can a new member begin their service?
- Can I apply for more than two boards?
- If I am already serving on a board or commission do I need to reapply?