WHAT IS THE CHARTER
The NYC Charter is the foundation of how our City functions and governs, and it has a direct impact on the way we live and work.
The NYC Charter
The New York City Charter is the document that defines the organization, powers, functions, and essential procedures of the city government. It lays out the fundamental structure of our city’s government, controls how decisions are made, and details the budget towards projects in housing and education to human rights and emergency services.
The charter is divided into three sections:
Instructions and descriptions of the City’s elected officials
Key government operations and processes
City agencies, their organization, powers and duties
Summary of Chapters
Read the New York City Charter online and learn more about Charter Revision at nyc.gov/charter.
Roles and duties of the Mayor, City Council, Districting Commission, Borough Presidents, and Comptroller. Chapter 3 (Board of Estimate) was repealed.
Format and allocation of the expense budget and procedures of administrative tax appeals and the tax commission.
Chapter 8: Housing & Land Use
Administration of the Department of City Planning, the City Zoning Resolution, criteria for citing city facilities, the Citywide Statement of Needs, Comprehensive waterfront plans, and the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP).
Chapter 9-15: Economic Equity
Power and duties of the Independent Budget Office, steps and regulations governing the budgeting process, an overview of procedures related to procurement.
Chapter 15-16: Housing & Land Use
Describes the acquisition and disposal of city-owned property and the duties of the Heads of mayoral agencies including planning, advising, program management, financial management, and contracting.
Chapter 17-18: Public Safety, Restorative Justice & Legal System
gency roles regarding Public Safety including the duties and oversight of the Law Department, Police Department, Civilian Complaint Review Board, and the Independent Police Investigation and Audit Board.
Chapter 19: Fire Department and Emergency Management Department
Creates the duties and oversight of these agencies.
Chapter 20: Education Equity
Administration of the Board of Education, investigations, school security measures, and school property.
Chapter 21-22: Health, Mental Health, & Well-Being
Duties and oversight of the Department of Parks and Recreation, New York City Sports Commission, and the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
Details work of the Office of Animal Welfare such as wildlife management and animal shelters.
Chapter 24: Health, Mental Health, & Well-Being; Housing
Oversight of the Department of Social Services including the Department of Homeless Services and the Administration for Children’s Services.
Chapter 25: Public Safety, Restorative Justice & Legal System
Powers of the Department of Correction including the roles and responsibilities of its commissioner and deputies, the maintenance of buildings, and prisoner labor.
Chapter 26: Housing & Land Use; Economic Equity
Administration of the Department of Buildings such as the conduct of investigations, appeals, inspection, Office of the Tenant Advocate, and building energy and emissions performance.
Chapter 27: Housing & Land Use; Infrastructure & Resiliency
Duties of the Board of Standards and Appeals which covers land use variances and special permits.
Chapter 28 – 29
Power and duties of the Department of Youth and Community Development including the roles of deputies, the youth board, and the interagency coordinating council.
Chapter 31: Infrastructure & Resiliency
Power and duties of the Department of Sanitation that covers duties of the commissioner and obligations of property owners of vacant lots.
Duties of the commissioner and deputies of the Department of Investigation that covers the complaint bureau, conduct of investigations, public outreach and reporting.
Chapter 35: Infrastructure & Resiliency
Management and powers of the Department of Citywide Administrative Services including the CIty Civil Service Commission, Office of Diversity and Inclusion, examinations, appointments and promotions, and public buildings and facilities.
Chapter 36: Economic Equity
Guidelines for the Equal Employment Practices Commission, which monitors the employment practices and programs of city agencies to maintain an effective affirmative employment program of equal employment opportunity for minority group members and women.
Chapter 37: Civic Empowerment & Engagement
Duties of the Art Commission such as the maintenance, repair, removal and oversight of works of art.
Oversight of the Financial Information Services Agency and the Office of Payroll Administration.
Chapter 40: Civic Empowerment & Engagement
The Declaration of Intent and function of the New York City Human Rights Commission and its relations with city departments and agencies.
Rules governing the City Administrative Procedure Act and the Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings.
Chapter 46-48: Civic Empowerment & Engagement
Regulations regarding Elections and Voter Assistance, Public Access to Meetings and Information, and the Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications.
Oversight of regulations for Officers and Employees including Term Limits, Qualifications for Elected Office, Transitory Provisions, General Provisions, and Collective Bargaining.
Power and duties of the Department of Design and Construction for public buildings, structures, and facilities.
Chapter 56: Economic Equity
Oversight by the Department of Small Business Services which include the Waterfront Management Advisory Board, Division of labor services and economic and financial opportunity, and youth workforce development
Chapter 57: Infrastructure & Resiliency
Rules governing the Department of Environmental Protection including the Office of Environmental Remediation.
Chapter 58: Economic Equity
Operations of the Department of Finance such as real property tax assessment, tax rates, community investment advisory boards, and contracts with collection agencies.
Chapter 61: Housing & Land-Use
Oversight of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development that includes acquisitions of real property, establishing affordable housing funds, and urban renewal data.
Chapter 63-65: Economic Equity
Duties of the Business Integrity Commission, the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection, and the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission.
Responsibilities of the Department for the Aging including maintaining a liaison with public housing authorities.
Chapter 67: Civic Empowerment & Engagement
Management of the Department of Cultural Affairs such as maintaining a cultural plan, budget estimates of cultural institutions, and data on cultural institutions.
Regulations regarding Conflicts of Interest, Community Districts and Coterminality of Services, and City Government in the Community such as the governance and duties of Community Boards.
Oversight of the Department of Transportation such as highway construction and obligations of property owners.
Power and duties of the Department of Records and Information Services including archival review, reference, and research.
Regulations for the Landmarks Preservation Commission for the review of petitions and buildings’ certificates of appropriateness.
Operations of the Department of Veterans’ Services including powers and duties of the commissioner and the Veterans’ Advisory Board.
Chapter 76: Civic Empowerment & Engagement
Oversight of the Civic Engagement Commission that includes assistance to community boards and cooperation with mayoral agencies.
Chapter 77: Civic Empowerment & Engagement
Operations of the Office of Ethnic and Community Media that oversees City advertising on ethnic and community media, and assists other public entities like the Department of Education and New York City Hospitals for their advertising.