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Boards, Commissions, and Committees Overview

Latest Update - September 26, 2011: Click here to learn about opportunities to serve on a Redwood City Board, Commission, or Committee!

The following are overview descriptions of the various City boards, commissions, and committees that currently have vacancies.

Complete descriptions, qualifications, and requirements for serving are available by calling the City Clerk’s office at 650-780-7220, visiting the Clerk’s office at City Hall, 1017 Middlefield Road, or by visiting the City Clerk’s website. The basic requirements are that applicants must have an interest in civic involvement, are 18 years of age or older, a United States citizen, and a resident of incorporated Redwood City (some board or commission positions may have additional requirements or preferred areas of expertise).


Architectural Advisory Committee

The Architectural Advisory Committee consists of five members appointed by the Planning Commission. The Committee advises the Planning Commission on matters concerning building and landscape architecture, site design, and signs. All Committee members need tohave experience in a relevant architectural or a design-related field. The Committee focuses on large or sensitive projects where architectural elements are significant and community input is important.

The Architectural Advisory Committee meets as needed on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month from 4 - 6 PM for working sessions that include applicants and City staff members. Committee members also occasionally attend joint study sessions with the Planning Commission (Tuesday evenings) for consideration of larger scale projects. Visit the Architectural Advisory Committee web page.


Board of Building Review

The role of Board of Building Review members is to act as the “Board of Appeals” for all matters regulated by the Redwood City Building Code, in addition to reviewing and making recommendations to the City Council regarding proposed Building Code amendments. When a developer or any other party disagrees with an interpretation or application by the Building Codes by the Building Official, they may appeal the matter to the Board of Building Review.

The City receives very few appeals; in fact, there have been no appeals filed in the last ten years. The City considers code adoptions on a four-year cycle. The next code cycle will be in 2013.

At a minimum the Board meets on an annual basis to perform administrative tasks and to elect officers.Visit the Board of Building Review web page.


Civic Cultural Commission

The Redwood City Civic Cultural Commission, on behalf of the City Council of Redwood City, is responsible for supporting and enhancing cultural life in our community. The commission believes that the following principles and values are the foundation for all our work:

  • Celebrate the diversity of the Redwood City Community
  • Encourage exceptional quality and excellence in programs
  • Support community building through cultural activities
  • Recognize that art, in all its forms, including visual, dramatic, music, dance, film, literature or other artistic expression, is essential to a vital community

The Civic Cultural Commission consists of seven members who meet on the first Thursday of the month at 7 pm at the Community Activities Building. The Commission’s goal is to meet every other month although they may meet more frequently depending on the timing of business items brought before them. Commission meetings normally last about two hours and it takes approximately 20 minutes to review their packet prior to a meeting.

The Commission has an annual budget which funds grants to support non-profit groups to provide cultural events or activities in Redwood City for the community. The Commission’s June and July meetings will last about three hours to allow for all large grant presentations and for the Commission to deliberate and approve these grant requests. The review of the large grant application packet will take several hours to review. Visit the Civic Cultural Commission web page.


Historic Resources Advisory Committee

The Historic Resources Advisory Committee consists of five members appointed by the Planning Commission. The Committee’s purpose is to advocate for the preservation and appropriate rehabilitation of historically significant properties and structures as set forth in the Historic Resources Chapter of the Redwood City General Plan. The Committee makes recommendations to the Planning Commission related to the City's Historic Preservation Ordinance.

Committee members must receive annual training on relevant aspects of historic resources in the context of the California Environmental Quality Act and the oversight of the City’s inventory of resources. Redwood City is a Certified Local Government (CLG) and as such the members of this Committee must be adequately trained in order to fulfill the duties of a CLG.

The Historic Resources Advisory Committee meets on the second Thursday of each month. Additional meetings  include sessions at properties being considered in the context of historic preservation. Visit the Historic Resources Advisory Committee web page.


Housing and Human Concerns Committee

The Housing and Human Concerns Committee (HHCC) advocates for the improvement of the quality of life of Redwood City citizens to assure that housing and a spectrum of social issues are given adequate consideration in decision making.

The HHCC members participate in the analysis of community needs, advocate for social and economic changes and recommend policies and strategies that are adopted in the Consolidated Plan and Housing and Human Services Elements of the General Plan. The HHCC provides oversight for the use of Community Development Block Grant and Human Services Financial Assistance Funds for public service programs, housing and community development and assures citizen input in the determination of use of those funds.

This committee meets quarterly, holds approximately two additional special meetings and convenes ad hoc work groups as needed. Regular meetings are generally two hours and held at 7pm on the 4th Tuesday of the month in each quarter. Agenda materials and meeting preparation averages one hour per meeting. The HHCC holds one annual retreat on a Saturday. Visit the Housing and Human Concerns Committee web page.


Library Board

The Library Board consists of seven members, appointed by the City Council for terms of four years. Board Members are passionate about the mission of our Library as the learning center of our community and the place where people turn to for the discovery of ideas, the joy of reading and the power of information. Their general duties and responsibilities include:

  • Ensure that literacy remains a core value and a long-term guiding principle
  • Help create, approve and review the strategic plan
  • Act as a community liaison and Library advocate by actively soliciting community input and providing feedback to the public concerning Library policies and services, as well as issues being considered by the City
  • Seek collaborative opportunities to cultivate partnerships, raise funds and recruit volunteers
  • Enthusiastically represent the Library at the community and regional level
  • Review and comment on the Library Director’s proposed budget prior to submission to the City Manager and City Council

The Library Board meets regularly on the second Wednesday of each month from 7 to 10 pm. Additional work sub-committees may be formed around specific library issues and would meet outside the regular meeting times. Board members should expect to spend 2 or more hours a month reviewing materials, along with attending community events. Visit the Library Board web page.


Senior Affairs Commission

The role of the Senior Affairs Commission members is to advise the City Council and City Manager, and work with other commissions, providing research on issues relating to seniors while advocating for our community's senior constituents. The commission provides support and feedback to the program staff at both the Veterans Memorial Senior Center and Fair Oaks Community Center while promoting these programs to the community at large.

The commission meets the second Tuesday of every other month at 1 pm in various senior locations such as the Veterans Memorial Senior Center, Fair Oaks Community Center, Woodside Terrace, and Casa de Redwood. This gives both the seniors and other participants an eye and ear to current problems, activities, and opportunities.

Members typically spend two hours reviewing materials in preparation for each meeting and commissioners are expected to bring and discuss information and topics related to senior citizens.Visit the Senior Affairs Commission web page.


Planning Commission

The responsibilities of the members of the Planning Commission include making recommendations to the City Council and otherwise reviewing and acting upon a variety of complex issues critical to the future growth and maintenance of the Redwood City community. Areas of responsibility include the City's General Plan and its amendments, neighborhood and specific area plans, environmental impact reports and negative declarations, tentative subdivision maps, planned development permit applications for developments of one acre or more, appeals from actions taken by the Planning Director or the Sub-division Committee regarding applications for minor subdivisions, zoning and subdivision ordinance amendments, and other areas.

The Commission is also responsible for appointing members to the Historic Resource Advisory Committee (HRAC) and the Architectural Advisory Committee (AAC).

Planning Commissioners must periodically attend training sessions, which may involve workshops, a weekend seminar, or similar commitments. Serving on the Planning Commission also demands reading and comprehending high volumes of material. Prior to every meeting, the commissioners receive a meeting agenda and associated materials, which they are responsible for reading and understanding, and being prepared to discuss in a public meeting format.

The Planning Commission meets on the first and third Tuesday of the month at 7 PM. Additional meetings may be added to the schedule as necessary.

Visit the Planning Commission web page.




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