Any League member city, or group of California cities, including League Divisions, that provide a program or service that has proven tangible and measurable results with a minimum of one year of actual implementation is eligible to apply. Instructions must be followed carefully as this will facilitate the fair evaluation of all applications and ensure fairness among entries.


  1. Please complete all fields of the three-part electronic application. Part 1 will collect your contact and program info, and allows you to set up a password to access your entry (your username will be your email address), Part 2 will allow you to upload up to 10 program photos and Part 3 asks that you have obtained approval from your mayor and city manager/administrator (or clerk in non-manager cities) of the application being submitted.
  2. Please address the following in your narrative in 1500 words or less:
    • The Challenge Describe the need or concern that prompted the development of the program.
    • The Solution Describe the steps taken by the city to address the problem/challenge. Explain how the program's objectives were met. If there is a partnership with other agencies, please highlight the involvement of the partners in the solutions.
    • The Results Describe the results of the program. How did the program affect the community or improve service delivery? What, if any, was the cost or resource savings? What effect, if any, did the program have on enhancing the city's fiscal stability? What lessons are instructive to other cities?
  3. Only one application and narrative per category may be submitted by a city. A program or activity may only be submitted for one category.
  4. Please submit your application online at No hard copies will be accepted.
  5. One set of photographs of the program must be uploaded to the online submission form.
    • 10 digital photographs of the project, preferably pictures showing people doing or using the program or project. Digital photos must be less than 2MB to upload to the website. Please note that once determined, award winners will be contacted for higher resolution photos for publication in Western City Magazine (at least 300 dpi). We recommend setting your camera to the highest resolution possible and then editing your photos down to 2MB for online submission. Acceptable formats for uploading photos are jpg or pdf files. Please enter caption information for the photos you upload, explaining what is being shown and the name and title of people in the photos.
    • All materials will become part of the League's library collection to share with other cities, both online and onloan, and will not be returned to the city. The submission of this application warrants that all materials submitted do not violate any copyright or other proprietary rights of others; that the materials are original works; that any photographs or videos are clear of any ownership or copyright restrictions, and those persons in the pictures or videos have agreed to or have no objection to the League using the pictures in promoting the city's program or in any other League material.

Scoring Criteria

The selection juries will judge each entry on:

  • the impact of the problem/challenges and how well it is outlined
  • the innovativeness of the solution
  • the quality of the results achieved

In addition, the following criteria will be used in the evaluation and scoring process. Be sure to address these criteria in your application. (Some criteria may not apply to a particular category; no penalty will apply.)

Community Engagement - To what extent is the public informed and involved and has input that is fully considered?

Savings and Efficiencies/Improved Services - To what extent does the program or service result in greater public benefits and/or less cost?

Positive Citizen Feedback - To what extent is the public reaction to the program or service supportive and positive?

Measurable and Transferable Results - To what extent are the results and benefits of the program or service verifiable and measurable, and useful to other cities?

Partnerships - To what extent are other agencies, schools, businesses, community-based organizations, etc. involved formally and informally?

Applications of Technology - To what extent are technologies involved in innovative ways in the program or service?

Youth Development - To what extent does the program or service better prepare youth to be informed, engaged and effective citizens?

Strategic Goals - To what extent does the program, policy, or activity advance the League's strategic goals for cities?

2017 League Strategic Priorities

How does the League determine the organization's top issues?

Every year, the League's members and leadership work together to set strategic priorities for the next 12 months. These goals focus our legislative and advocacy activities and serve as a powerful tool for advancing local control.

  1. Increase Funding for Critical Transportation and Water infrastructure. Provide additional state and federal funding and local financing tools - such as reducing the vote threshold for local initiatives - to support California's economy, transportation (streets, bridges, trade corridors, active transportation and transit) and water related needs (supply, sewer, storm water, flood control, beach erosion, etc.) including maintenance and construction. Support appropriate streamlining of storm water regulations and CEQA to avoid duplication and reduce litigation.
  2. Develop Realistic Responses to the Homeless Crisis. Increase state and federal funding and support to provide additional shelter and services to California's homeless, and advance the recommendations of the CSAC-League Homelessness Task Force.
  3. Improve the Affordability of Workforce Housing and Secure Additional Funds for Affordable Housing. Increase state and federal financial support, reduce regulatory barriers, and provide additional incentives and local financial tools to address the affordability of workforce housing and increase the availability of affordable housing.
  4. Address Public Safety Impacts of Reduced Sentencing Laws, Protect Local Priorities in the Implementation of AUMA, and Preserve City Rights to Deliver Emergency Medical Services. Provide tools and resources cities need to respond to recent changes in statewide criminal sentencing policies. Protect local priorities during development of regulations and legislation to implement the Adult Use of Marijuana Act. In addition, continue to preserve city rights to deliver emergency medical services (Health and Safety Code 1797.201).