There are twelve Community Boards in the Borough of Manhattan— 59 across all of New York City— charged with representing community interests on crucial issues of development and planning, land use, zoning and City service delivery, such as sanitation and street maintenance. Members of these boards are pivotal designers of their communities who work to enhance and preserve the character of the city’s many unique neighborhoods. Each board is equipped with 50 volunteer members generally serving staggered two-year terms, a budget, a district manager and staff that enable it to be the independent and representative voice of its community. Please click here if you are interested in serving on a Community Board.
Community Board members are appointed by the Manhattan Borough President. Half of the members of these boards are appointed unilaterally by the Manhattan Borough President; the other half with the nomination of the City Council Members who represent the district. Please click here to learn more about the Community Board appointment process.
All Community Board members must be residents of New York City and must have a residence, business, professional or other significant interest in the district. In addition, the Manhattan Borough President’s office looks for applicants with histories of involvement in their communities, expertise and skill sets that are helpful to community boards, attendance at community board meetings, and knowledge of issues impacting their community. No more than 25 percent of the members of any board may be New York City employees.
Manhattan’s Community Boards are based on a parliamentary structure much like the City Council or U.S. Congress. Every Board has an Executive Committee elected by the Board that includes a Chair, Vice Chairs, a Secretary and a Treasurer. Community Boards create additional subcommittees based off the needs of their districts; examples include committees for Land Use and Zoning, Parks and Waterfront, Health and Human Services, Nightlife and Business Applications, Transportation, Landmarks and Preservation, and Education and Youth Services. Boards are empowered to establish their own committee structure and procedures. Please click here for an illustration of the structure of a typical Community Board.
All Community Board meetings are open to the public. The full Community Board of each district meets once a month. Meetings rotate locations but stick to the same monthly times. Subcommittees meet more frequently to discuss their individual areas of responsibility. Community Board committees often take up matters including discussions on the City's budget, on land use matters, and other major issues, providing community members the opportunity to express their opinions. To attend a meeting, please see your individual Community Board section here for details.
Borough Board and Borough Service Cabinet
Manhattan Borough President Stringer chairs two Boards that bring the chairs of each Community Board together with other important stakeholders in Manhattan each month. The Borough Board, consisting of Manhattan’s City Council Members and Community Board Chairs, focuses on issues dealing with land use, development, public policy, budget, and other important matters with potential borough wide implications. The Borough Service Cabinet, chaired by Manhattan Borough President Stringer with the district managers of Manhattan’s Community Boards and representatives from City agencies, focuses on city service delivery and agency responsiveness across the borough. Please click here for information on the Borough Board and Borough Service Cabinet.
Office of Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer • 212.669.8300
1 Centre Street, 19th Floor • New York, NY 10007 • © Copyright 2006
The Manhattan Borough Presidentís Office is an Equal Opportunity Employer.