City Organization & Roles

Who Does What in City Government? 

To understand how Lakewood can efficiently and effectively serve its residents, it's important to know what services the city provides and how a Lakewood Plan city operates.

Lakewood is a general law city. It is a municipal corporation under the general laws for cities enacted by the state legislature.

City Council

The five members of the city council are elected by districts to serve a four-year term of office. Each year, the city council reorganizes, selecting one council member to serve as mayor and another as vice mayor. 

In addition, the council appoints the Community Safety Commission, the Planning and Environment Commission, and the Recreation and Community Services Commission. 

The city council appoints a city manager and a city attorney  

City Manager

Lakewood is also a council/manager city with a city manager appointed by the city council.

The city manager administers Lakewood’s municipal programs under the policies set by the council.

City Manager 

Department responsibilities

City Clerk Maintains and provides access to public records and oversees city elections.
Personnel Has information on city job openings.
Community Development Building Section: Construction permits and inspection.
Housing Section: Home improvement loans and fair housing help.
Planning Section: Zoning and planning.
Community Conservation Section: Resolve unsightly property conditions (code enforcement issues).
Administrative Services Oversees the city budget, water and trash billing, purchasing, business licenses, parking control officers and computer systems.
Public Works Supervises contracts for highway maintenance, street sweeping, trash collection, animal control, street light maintenance, street tree maintenance, and traffic signal repair, as well maintenance of municipal buildings and equipment.
Water Resources Manages the city's water utility, which serves more than 20,000 households west of the San Gabriel River. The department also operates the city's reclaimed water system, which saves over 140 million gallons of drinking water a year--enough to satisfy the needs of 900 Lakewood families.
Recreation & Community Services Manages more than 160 acres of recreational open space, the recreation programs at 10 major parks, and human service programs at three community service centers. Also supervises the city's DASH specialized transportation service and provides landscape maintenance for parks and city facilities.


Council Meetings

Lakewood City Council meetings are held twice each month--on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month--in the City Council Chambers at The Centre at Sycamore Plaza. City Council meetings are open to the public. They begin at 7:30 p.m.

City Council meetings are broadcast live on the web, CityTV channel 31 on both cable and FIOS. Meetings are repeated following the council meeting.

City Commissions

Lakewood residents serve on Lakewood’s three advisory commissions. Each is composed of five members appointed by the city council to a two-year term. Commission meetings begin at 7 p.m. in the City Council Chambers. They are open to the public.