Boards and Commissions

The City of Palo Alto has eight Boards, Commissions and Committees. The City Council appoints each to focus on specific areas within the City. Board/Committee Members and Commissioners volunteer their time and expertise to review items. The items are then reviewed by the City Council. For more details, please review our Boards, Commissions and Committees Handbook(PDF, 2MB). Visit our City Meetings Agendas page to explore other meeting groups.

If interested in applying to a Board, Commission or Committee, the City always accept applications to have on file for the next open recruitment. Applicants will be notified when recruitment opens to confirm their continued interest. Applications can be completed on our Boards and Commissions Recruitment page.


Boards, Commissions and Committees Workplans

On November 30, 2020, the City Council adopted the Boards, Commissions and Committees (BCC) Handbook, which implemented an annual review and approval of BCC workplans. Each BCC is required to prepare an annual workplan for review and approval by the Council by second quarter of the calendar year.

2022-2023 Council Approved Workplans

Regular Meeting Schedule

Architectural Review Board Monthly on the first and third Thursdays at 8:30 a.m.
Historic Resources Board Monthly on the second and fourth Thursdays at
8:30 a.m.
Human Relations Commission Monthly on the second Thursday at 6 p.m.
Parks &
Recreation Commission
Monthly on the fourth Tuesday at 7 p.m.
Planning &
Transportation Commission
Monthly on the second and last Wednesday at 6 p.m.
Public Art Commission Monthly on the third Thursday at 7 p.m.
Stormwater Management
Oversight Committee
Even numbered months on the first Thursday at 1 p.m.
Utilities Advisory Commission Monthly on the first Wednesday at 6 p.m.

Wondering how to join a City meeting and provide public comment?
Take a look at our Resources for Hybrid Attendance and Public Comment Policy(PDF, 409KB)

Board and Commission Resources

Board Members and Commissioners can use these resources to learn best practices for conducting and participating in public meetings.

Boards, Commissions and Committees Handbook

On November 30, 2020 the City Council adopted a Boards, Commissions and Committees (BCC) Handbook. The handbook standardizes and streamlines the BCC protocols. The work of the BCC supports and clarifies the City Council’s priorities and expectations. For more information, please review the Boards, Commissions and Committees Handbook(PDF, 2MB).

Brown Act

The California State Legislature passed the Brown Act in 1953. The Brown Act ensures the public's rights on attending and participating in meetings of local legislative bodies.

Meeting Management

The City of Palo Alto strives to have effective discussion in public meetings. Understanding the roles and procedures in a meeting are important for informed discussion and action.

Ethics Training

Local officials in California are required by law (AB 1234, Chapter 700, Stats. of 2005) to complete an ethics training. The Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) has made the AB 1234 Local Ethics Training available to satisfy the local officials ethics training requirement.

Statement of Economic Interest Form (FPPC Form 700)