The committee will continue its discussion on the police commission's role at its next meeting Feb. 6.
Monday's meeting was the second of nine scheduled by the Charter Review Committee to review and recommend changes to how the city government operates.
Changes to the city charter would need approval by voters.
Monday's meeting was dominated by the discussion of the police commission, created in 1954 to clean up corruption in the Police Department.
Police Lt. Eric Rosoff provided an overview of the department's policy of taking and investigating complaints against officers.
Complaints are accepted in writing and verbally. They may be anonymous. The police chief reviews and assigns complaints to an investigator. Investigations are required to be completed within 60 days. Interviews with witnesses and the officers involved in the complaint are tape recorded.
Officers are subject to one of four outcomes. Claims of misconduct can be "sustained," meaning an officer was involved in misconduct; "not sustained"; "exonerated" -- meaning there was no violation of policy; or unfounded, meaning there was no misconduct."
In 2003, the department received 56 complaints, of which five were found to warrant a finding of misconduct. That number dropped to 24 complaints in 2005, with two found to warrant a finding of misconduct.
"That is a nice decline in the number of complaints," Rosoff said. "Each employee, when they go out to represent the Police Department, they know what is expected of them and are less likely to engage in any misconduct."
Bill Ward, executive director of the Citizen Police Complaint Commission in Long Beach, told the committee that any review is helpful but Burbank will need to decide if expanding the police commission's oversight would work for it.
"It works for Long Beach," Ward said. "Some cities don't need civilian oversight. But if there is a major incident, it's something to fall back on."
The Long Beach commission was created at a time of tension between minority residents and the Police Department and has since been accepted by both the minority community and the police, Ward said.
"The community recognizes we will have an open hearing and it acts as a pressure valve," Ward said. "The community has trust in the commission to represent them."