Duarte is a general law city under a Council/Manager form of government. The five City Council Members are elected for four-year terms. The Mayor is selected by the Council and serves for a one-year term. The City Council appoints the City Manager and City Attorney. The City Council also appoints all City Commissioners including: Economic Development Commission, Parks and Recreation Commission, Planning Commission, Public Safety Commission, Public Services Commission and Traffic Safety Commission. The City Council also sits as the successor agency to the dissolved redevelopment agency of the City of Duarte, Duarte Housing Authority and Duarte community facilities financing authority.
To understand how Duarte provides exemplary public services in a transparent and fiscally responsible manner it is important to know about the various services the City provides.
Duarte is a general law city, which means the City is bound by California’s general law enacted by the State Legislature. Duarte is also a contract city, which means select municipal services are provided via a contract arrangement; the City contracts police and fire services. Los Angeles County Sheriff Temple Station provide traditional police services. Los Angeles County Fire Department provides fire services.
The five members of the City Council are elected at-large to serve a four-year term. Every year, the Council reorganizes, selecting one Council member to serve as Mayor and another Council member to serve as Mayor Pro Tem.
The Council/City Manager form of government combines the leadership of elected officials with the managerial experience of an appointed City Manager. The City Manager carries out the policies set by Council and day-to-day administrative operations. The position is also responsible for implementing the policies and directives of the City Council within the foundation of the City’s Mission Statement. The Manager also directs the various City departments and services with responsibilities that include presenting an annual budget, coordinating a variety of public information resources for both internal and public distribution, and is also the appointed City Treasurer and Director of Public Safety. Additionally, the City Manager is responsible for the long-range planning for the organization and the development of recommendations to the City Council on a variety of public policy issues.
The City Clerk assists and supports the public and City departments by maintaining and making available public records and overseeing City elections.
The Community Development Department is comprised of four divisions: Planning, Engineering/Public Works, Building and Safety and Field Services. The Planning Division is responsible for the review of land use applications and the Architectural Review process. The Planning Division also manages the City’s Housing Authority and Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) programs.
The Engineering/Public Works Division manages local capital improvement projects, issues permits and inspects work in the public right of way.
The Building and Safety Division provides plan check and inspection services for local construction projects.
The Field Services Division provides a variety of maintenance activities including landscape maintenance and tree trimming, street light repair, sewer and storm drain maintenance, street markings and brush clearance on City owned open space.
The Public Safety Department provides animal control services, municipal code compliance, parking enforcement, homeless outreach, school crossing guards, crime prevention and emergency preparedness.
Parks and Recreation Department is responsible for recreation programs at City facilities and parks, youth and citywide special events, youth summer camps and the Duarte’s Promise: The Alliance for Youth program. The Department also coordinates the scheduling of all City buildings and athletic facilities and securing and administrating grants for park and program development. Facility Maintenance Division executes the day-to-day maintenance of all City facilities, City park buildings, restrooms, playground equipment and drinking fountains, and City maintenance yards.
Administrative Services Department is responsible for administrative functions including finance, human resources, business licenses, information technology, transit and risk management.
Duarte City Council meetings are held twice each month on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month at the Community Center. Meetings begin at 7 p.m. and the public is invited to attend and participate.
Duarte residents serve on six commissions. Each is composed of five members appointed by the City Council to a four-year term. Commission meetings typically begin at 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center and the public is invited.