MultCo Budget Priorities Survey

From Multnomah County Commissioner Jessica Vega Pederson:

Dear friends & neighbors,

A budget is a reflection of priorities, and Multnomah County’s budget is no different. The programs and projects we invest in should be a reflection of our community’s values, concerns, and aspirations.

That’s why I’d like to solicit your top priorities. Please take a moment to identify your top concerns by filling out this survey.

With Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury scheduled to release her proposed budget on April 26th, I want to know your thoughts as we determine how best to spend the vital funding provided by hardworking taxpayers like you.

Just as last year, I’ll report back on the results, and your feedback will inform my thinking during the budget process.

You can find out more information about the county’s budget, as well as opportunities to weigh in during our budget hearings here. I encourage you to share your thoughts and concerns not only with me but also with my fellow commissioners.

Together, we can continue to make our community one we can be proud of.

Warmly,

Jessica Vega Pederson

Contact Commissioner Vega Pederson:

Phone: 503.988.5217
Email: district3@multco.us
Address: 501 SE Hawthorne Blvd, Suite 600, Portland, Oregon 97214

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Request for Support for Public Safety

From Mayor Wheeler’s Office:

As the 2018-2019 budget season is well underway, the Mayor’s Office would like to encourage our constituents with public safety concerns to give testimony in support of Portland Police Bureau’s budget request. Public safety in our community is in jeopardy.

The bureau is requesting funds for 93 additional sworn officers, and nine additional non-sworn professional positions. These requests support the Mayor’s key priorities of increasing public safety and police accountability, maintaining the City’s critical infrastructure, and enhancing livability. The bureau’s requests for additional ongoing resources will advance the bureau’s mission and goals to provide 21st Century Policing services, to support organizational excellence and inclusion, and to rebuild police units so they can better deliver community policing to all residents.

Staffing within the PPB has been a critical issue for the bureau for many years, and there are several factors that impact this issue: recruitment and hiring, attrition and number of officers.

There are the fewer officers in the bureau as there were a decade ago, despite a 10 percent increase in Portland’s population. This request would increase the number of officer positions by approximately 10 percent–on par with Portland’s growth.

The Portland Police Bureau continues to face challenges in patrol staffing, which has led to declining response times. In the last five years, total 911 call volume has increased by over 22%. These calls include a 97% increase in stolen vehicle calls, 64% increase in unwanted persons calls and a 32% increase in disorder calls.

Without an increase in staffing, the response time for these calls will only grow, threatening the safety of all Portlanders.  We urge constituents with any public safety concerns to voice their support for this proposed budget.

Your voice in this conversation is essential, and we urge constituents to either submit written testimony, contact city commissioners or attend one of the upcoming community budget events:

Community Budget Forums

April 17, 2018, 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Roosevelt High School
6941 N Central St, 97203
Bus lines 44 and 75
Most testimony by random drawing

Budget Committee Hearings

May 10, 2018, 6:00pm – 8:30pm, hearing to receive public testimony
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave., Portland, OR 97204

May 16, 2018, 2:00pm, Council Action to approve City Budget, testimony heard
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave., Portland, OR 97204

Utility Rate Review
May 17, 2018 (first reading), 2:00pm, second reading May 23, 2018, time TBD
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave., Portland, OR 97204

TSCC Public Hearing
June 6, 2018, 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Rose Room, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave, Portland, OR 97204

Council Action to Adopt Budget
June 7, 2018, 2:00pm
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave, Portland, OR 97204

Portland Budget Meetings on April 3 and 7

From Portland Parks Foundation:

Let City Council Know Your Thoughts on Parks Budget Cuts

Portland’s City Budget Office (CBO) has recommended a draft Portland Parks & Recreation budget for 2018-19 that includes $2.1 million in cuts–nearly half of a total of $5 million in General Fund cuts asked from all bureaus combined.  The proposed reductions, if approved, will deeply impact PP&R’s ability to deliver core programs and services.
As a parks advocate, PPF encourages you and like-minded partners to take action in support of parks:
  • GET INFORMED. Learn more about the city’s Budget Process. Read through the CBO’s PPR&R Budget Review which includes a recommended 4%, or $2.1 million in reductions.

  • SHOW UP.  Over the next two months, City Council will hold a number of meetings to hear community concerns. This is an opportunity to show up in support of parks, and to testify about how these cuts will impact you and your neighborhood. Community Budget Forums are taking place in the next two weeks, which will inform the Mayor as he prepares to release his proposed budget April 30.
April 3, 6:30-8:30pm at David Douglas High School
1001 SE 135th Avenue, 97233
April 17, 6:30-8:30pm at Roosevelt High School
6941 N Central Street, 97203
  • GET OTHERS ENGAGED. City Council needs to know the impacts of the proposed PP&R budget on all of our communities. Share information about the Budget Processwith fellow parks advocates and get them engaged in the process.
Feel free to call PPF at 503-445-0994 or visit them online for more information about the hearings and the budget process.

Parks Budget Process Update – March 2018

A Letter from Portland Parks and Recreation:
Dear Parks Community,
When I last updated you in January 2018 on the City of Portland Budget Process, it was to share that we had just submitted the final Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) Requested Budget. In accordance with the Mayor’s budget direction, we submitted a proposed budget that identified reductions equaling approximately 5% of our ongoing General Fund Budget (approximately $3.27 million). Our Requested Budget closely mirrored the recommendations of the Parks Budget Advisory Committee (BAC).
City Budget Office Budget Review
After we submitted our Requested Budget, it was reviewed by the City Budget Office (CBO) whose job is to analyze and highlight the key budget and program performance issues that the CBO believes Council should consider during the budget process. Recently, the CBO released their review of our budget. In their Budget Review, the City Budget Office recommended to that Council take 4% of the reductions submitted by PP&R. This would amount to reducing the PP&R budget by $2.1 million. This level of cuts will significantly impact our programs. In addition to the ongoing General Fund reductions, the CBO also recommends an ongoing increase to our major maintenance funds and some one-time funding for campsite cleanups and capital projects.

Several of you have asked why we are making cuts when the economy appears to be doing well.  While we are in a period of economic growth, the CBO is forecasting a $1.5 million gap to the citywide Ongoing General Fund due to higher inflation, labor costs and PERS. In order to offset the $1.5 million ongoing deficit and create room for priority investments (including housing and public safety), the CBO recommends $5.0 million in ongoing reductions citywide. A net reduction of $2.1 million from the PP&R budget will make up almost half of the recommended General Fund reductions. We are disappointed that the CBO review shows PP&R taking this level of General Fund reduction. If taken, these reductions would impact almost every segment of our organization.

Our Requested Budget was strongly grounded in the Values developed and adopted by successive BAC’s. After years of refinement, the Values reflect our commitment to equity, safety, strategic thinking, partnerships, maintenance, core programming and volunteerism. A $2.1 million reduction to our budget would severely limit our ability to deliver core programs and services.

The Budget Process—NEXT STEPS
On Friday, March 16, PP&R participated in a work session with City Council where PP&R presented the impacts of the reductions on our work and our proposed Add Packages. In the coming months, the following steps will take place:

  • April 3 and 17, Community Budget Forums—There are several community budget forums where you, as Portlanders, can give direct budget feedback to City Council
– April 3, 2018, 6:30pm – 8:30pm
David Douglas High School
1001 SE 135th Avenue, 97233
– April 17, 2018, 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Roosevelt High School
6941 N Central Street, 97203

  • April 30, Release of the Mayor’s Proposed Budget—Mayor Wheeler will use the information provided by the CBO, PP&R staff, and the public to develop the Mayor’s Proposed Budget. 
  • Finalizing an Adopted Budget—City Council will then deliberate, a Budget Committee hearing will be held on May 10, and Council expects to continue to hear testimony from you, the community, and then they will approve the City Budget on May 16, 2018.
– May 10, 2018, 6:00pm – 8:30pm, hearing to receive public testimony
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Avenue, Portland, OR 97204
– May 16, 2018, 2:00pm, Council Action to approve City Budget, testimony heard
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Avenue, Portland, OR 97204


Helpful Links

I know that the budget process can be difficult, especially with the possible reductions that are on the table for discussion. Several of these are programs and sites for which you, as our Parks community, care deeply and already work hard to partner with us on.

If you have questions regarding the budget or the budget process, please let your liaison know or reach out to Elizabeth Kennedy-Wong at elizabeth.kennedy-wong@portlandoregon.gov.

Thank you for your time and interest in our parks system,

…Mike