How We Govern

Eight board members sitting at a raised dais at an Executive Board meeting.

ABAG Board members at an Executive Board meeting at the Bay Area Metro Center

Credit: Leah Zippert

How We Govern

ABAG is part regional planning agency and part local government service provider. Within each of these two categories we perform a broad range of activities for our members.

ABAG outlines work program goals and objectives for the Bay Area’s nine counties and 101 cities and towns every year, and we are primarily governed by the following:

In some cases, ABAG has the authority to enact certain legislation on behalf of the Bay Area, for example the state-mandated Regional Housing Need Allocation, or RHNA. We also operate as the state-designated clearinghouse for federal grant applications.

Annual Meeting - General Assembly and Business Meeting

ABAG’s General Assembly, which meets at least once a year, determines policy and adopts the annual budget and work program during the Business Meeting.

ABAG History

ABAG was formed by local government leaders in 1961, who recognized the need to address common issues from a regional perspective. And we were the first council of governments, or CoG, formed in California.

Read more about the History of ABAG.