What is a Neighborhood Council?

The City of Los Angeles is comprised of diverse neighborhoods with different strengths, issues and concerns.  Because neighborhoods are best understood by people who live, work and play there, City leaders created Neighborhood Councils through the City Charter in 1999 as a mechanism to better support the City’s diverse neighborhoods.

Neighborhood Councils act as your community’s voice to City leaders. 

Participants of Neighborhood Councils are empowered to advocate for real change in their communities.  They act to bring attention to issues that need to be dealt with, including crime, repair and maintenance of roads and streets, gang activities and the economy.

Neighborhood Councils are headed by a Board which consists of members elected by the residents/stakeholders of their respective community.   Stakeholders are defined per Council action on December 18, 2007 (Council File # 05-0894-S3) as:

. . . those who live, work, or own property in the neighborhood and also to those who declare a stake in the neighborhood and affirm the factual basis for it.

The number of Boardmembers for each Neighborhood Council varies depending on the needs of the community.  Boardmembers are also responsible for the management of an annual budget; each Neighborhood Council may receive up to $37,000.00 each year.

Since Neighborhood Councils are mandated by the Los Angeles City Charter, they are subject to applicable federal, state and local laws that govern other City departments.  These laws include the following:

  • Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Brown Act
  • Conflict of Interest Laws
  • Los Angeles City Charter
  • The Plan for a Citywide System of Neighborhood Councils
  • Public Records Act
  • Local ordinances

To learn more about Neighborhood Councils, please click on the links below (from DONE’s website):

Click on the link below to read the July 2, 2012 Los Angeles Times article (op-ed) by Jim Newton on LA’s Neighborhood Councils 10 years after after the establishment of the first Neighborhood Council: