Got a complaint about local government? Tell the Grand Jury!

Did you know there is a body of volunteers in the county of Ventura dedicated to investigating public complaints about county agencies, city governments and special districts such as water, schools and harbors?

The Ventura County Civil Grand Jury is an investigatory panel of 19 citizens from all backgrounds that operates as a public watchdog over the city and county governments.

The Grand Jury is authorized to investigate complaints about government mismanagement, verify that pubic funds are properly accounted for and legally spent and investigate the policies, practices and processes of county or city departments in order to improve the efficiencies and effectiveness of our


Each year the Grand Jury reports the findings and recommendations that result from these investigations. These reports are made public by posting on the Grand Jury website at officials and board members whose departments are the focus of an investigation must respond within 90 days. Their responses are also posted to the website.

Complaint forms in English and Spanish may be downloaded from the Grand Jury website ( and submitted by fax or mail to the address on the form. All complaints are kept confidential.

Do you belong to a group that invites speakers to it’s meetings? The Ventura County Grand Jury conducts an ongoing speakers bureau and outreach program. Service organizations, community groups, non-profits and other groups are invited to request a presentation by current grand jurors.

The civil Grand Jury does not pursue criminal cases or hear evidence in courtrooms. This all volunteer “public watchdog” group serves as an independent agent for the citizens of Ventura County. It is their responsibility to investigate complaints from the public, write reports, and make recommendations about all components of local government such as city councils, school districts, jails, hospitals, harbors and water districts. The Grand Jury can investigate issues ranging from alleged government violations of city and county codes to disaster preparedness, contracting procedures, health and safety issues and most processes, policies and practices of all departments or agencies within the cities and county of Ventura.

The Grand Jury issues an annual report on it’s findings and recommendations. Reports of Grand Jury investigations and responses from investigated agencies and departments can be found on the Grand Jury website at Public complaint forms can be found on the site as well.

To learn more or schedule a date for a presentation please call the Grand Jury at (805) 477-1600 or complete a speaker’s bureau request form that can be found on the website.

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