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Planning Assistant

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Posted: 10/03/2014

City of Los Angeles
Department of City Planning

As the second largest municipal planning department in the nation, the Los Angeles Department of City Planning is at the cutting-edge in urban planning practice nationally. The department is capitalizing on the city's major investment in transit to reshape the 21st century metropolis, pursuing exciting transit-oriented district planning, mobility strategies emphasizing "Complete Streets" and a far-reaching Community Planning and neighborhood planning program. The Department's Office of Historic Resources (OHR) is spearheading SurveyLA, the Los Angeles Historic Resources Survey Project, in partnership with the J. Paul Getty Trust -- the most ambitious local historic resources survey program in the nation. The OHR serves as the professional staff for the City's Cultural Heritage Commission, with jurisdiction over more than 1,000 City Historic-Cultural Monuments (local landmarks). And the OHR staffs the review of 29 local historic districts (Historic Preservation Overlay Zones, or HPOZs), with more than 18,000 properties, in diverse neighborhoods throughout the city. For more information on the department's major inititives, see: http://cityplanning.lacity.org/PressRelease/ReshapingLA_Pamphlet.pdf

Planning Assistant
Professional Opportunity
Los Angeles, CA
$58,000 to $85,000

Planning Assistant is the entry-level professional planning position for the City of Los Angeles.  Because the current Planning Assistant civil service bulletin now includes a specific "selective certification" for candidates with significant historic preservation experience, the Department of City Planning is seeking to recruit talented candidates with historic preservation expertise to join the Department's Office of Historic Resources.  

A Planning Assistant may work in historic preservation planning for the Department of City Plannings Office of Historic Resources, helping to oversee the Citys 29 historic districts (Historic Preservation Overlay Zones), the Mills Act Historical Property Contract financial incentives program, and project review affecting historic resources across the city.   Other Planning Assistants perform professional city planning work in long-range and policy planning, including citywide, community and neighborhood planning; and project planning, including review, analysis and clearance of land use proposals, development projects, and site plans.  A Planning Assistant may have specialized expertise in historic preservation, environmental analysis, and/or zoning review and compliance.

The City of Los Angeles seeks applications from talented, creative candidates who can navigate a city of remarkable complexity and diversity, serving residents from more than 140 countries and speaking more than 220 languages. 


1.       Graduation from a recognized four-year college or university with a Bachelors or Masters degree in urban planning, urban studies, urban design, architecture, landscape architecture, geography, public administration, political science, environmental science, social ecology, economics, or historic preservation; or

2.       Four years of full-time paid experience with the City of Los Angeles as a Planning Aide

3.       In addition to answering the regular City application supplemental questions, each applicant is required to complete the Planning Assistant Qualification Questionnaire at the time of filing.  The Planning Assistant Qualification Questionnaire is located within the Supplemental Questions section of the City application.  Applicants who fail to complete the Qualification Questionnaire will not be considered further in this examination, and their application will not be processed.

4.       Achievement of a passing score in the qualifying written test. 

Selective Certification

Selective certification will be used for some positions that require special skills and/or training.  Only persons possessing the following as to the close of the filing period may be certified in order of standing on the eligible list to fill such positions:

1.       One year of full-time paid experience in the field of zoning review and/or code enforcement.

2.       One year of full-time paid experience in the field of environmental policy and/or environmental analysis.  California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) experience is highly preferred.


3.       One year of full-time paid experience in the field of historic preservation, including the implementation and application of the Secretary of the Interiors Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties, as to proposals affecting historic buildings; or academic degree with a major or concentration specifically focused on historic preservation or historic preservation planning.

OPen until

How to apply
After October 10, visit the City's Personnel Department web site to review the job bulletin and fill out the application.

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