Intent on ensuring young people havea strong voice on their own commission, the City Council agreed that at least six adults and six youths should have seats on the Camarillo Youth Advisory Council.
The City Council officially established the commission Wednesday after six months of community meetings and preliminary work by an ad-hoc panel.
The panel had recommended that the youth council include at least six minors among its members, with the assumption adults would form the majority. The Youth Advisory Council will have a maximum of 17 members. The City Council action only slightly modifies the ad-hoc commission's proposal, but provides more flexibility in recruiting members and sends a message that youths will be heard, officials said.
"I think there's a danger by young people [to think] that the commission is dominated by adults and the agenda is the adults'," Vice Mayor David Smith said.
That would inevitably lead to the group's failure, he said.
The youth council's purpose is to coordinate programs for the region's younger residents and address their concerns.
The council will function as a coordinating body with other groups organizing specific projects, ad-hoc committee co-chairman Rod Franz said.
Activities mentioned as possibilities include a youth newspaper and youth lounge.
To ensure a diversity of viewpoints, members should be sought from a broad spectrum of the community, including people not normally associated with "mainstream" organizations, the ad-hoc committee recommended.
Unlike other municipal advisory bodies, youth council members will be drawn from throughout the Camarillo area, not just the city itself, the City Council decided.