While the recent elections highlight running for office as a way to participate in local government, they also open another opportunity: joining a city commission or committee. The city of Galt is looking for community members to fill a large number of open seats.

These groups advise Galt City Council on topics from public safety and planned development to beautification and the concerns of older adults.

Each commission or committee member is appointed by a council member, generally to a four-year term that ends when that council member’s does. With three council seats up for election this year, that means most commissions and committees have at least three openings. Unless otherwise specified, most of the open seats have four-year terms ending in December 2026.

Read on to learn more about each of the commissions and committees. If you’re interested in serving on one of them, visit cityofgalt.org/citycommissions for more information and for the application. Applications must be submitted to the city clerk by Dec. 21.

The Beautification Committee organizes “projects designed to maintain and improve the appearance of public areas within the city.” Among its activities, it holds a monthly street cleanup with the Youth Commission and recognizes especially well-kept houses as Home of the Month. The commission meets on the third Thursday of the month; while its official meeting time is listed as 10 a.m., in practice it meets at 4 p.m.

The Commission on Aging provides a way for local older adults to make their concerns and interests known, and it regularly takes on projects that help older adults remain active in the community. For example, the commission recently started a weekly bingo event and was also involved in organizing mobile COVID-19 vaccinations for older adults. The commission meets on the fourth Thursday of the month at 10 a.m.

The Youth Commission is looking for adult mentors, who guide the high-school-age commissioners as they work on programs for teens and advise the city on issues important to local youth. There are four open mentor positions: three with terms ending in December 2026 and one with a term ending in December 2024. Meetings are held on the first Monday of the month at 6:30 p.m.

The Parks and Recreation Commission is a great forum for staying informed on the city’s efforts to maintain its many parks, facilities and extensive landscaping. Parks and Recreation Director Armando Solis gives updates on his department’s recent activities at each meeting. The commission meets on the second Wednesday of every other month at 6 p.m.

The Planning Commission deals with proposed development in Galt and policies that affect its future growth. In some cases, that means making recommendations for Council to review, but the commission has final say on many of the matters that come before it. The various subdivisions being built around the city invariably had to get approval from the Planning Commission, which meets on the second Thursday of the month at 6 p.m.

The Public Safety Committee reviews safety issues in the community, with topics of discussion coming from Council, public safety officials, committee members or the public. Representatives of Galt Police Department and Cosumnes Fire Department regularly present to the committee and report back on questions. Meetings are held on the fourth Monday of every other month.

The Historic Preservation Advisory Committee “recommends to the City Council the designation of cultural resources, including individual properties and historic preservation districts.” Unlike most other committees, its members serve three-year terms; there is one vacancy with a term ending in December 2023, as well as two vacancies with terms ending in December 2024. The committee meets on an as-needed basis.

The Measure R Independent Citizens Oversight Committee keeps tabs on the revenue from the Measure R sales tax, which is intended to be spent on new law enforcement programs. Representatives of the police department and the Finance Department brief committee members on the Measure R fund’s income and expenses, and report on what initiatives the money is supporting. Members serve three-year terms, and there is one vacancy with a term ending in April 2024. The committee meets quarterly on the fourth Wednesday at 6 p.m.