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$19 million “extra” for Portland?

October 3, 2006

Holy cow, that’s a pretty penny! The City of Portland has about  $19,000,000 in surplus funds, as a result of a good market year, that our Commissioners and Mayor plan on spending – and the debate begins now.  From today’s Oregonian:

The surplus is a fairly regular feature of Portland’s $2 billion budget system when the economy does better than forecasters expect.

This year’s version comes in part from the pockets of businesses and tourists. Businesses recorded higher profits than expected and hotels lodged more visitors than expected, said Jennifer Sims, the city’s interim chief financial officer. Another $4.5 million of the surplus came in a legal settlement.

I’ll have to see about that legal settlement – what was that?  In any case, here’s what our city leaders are thinking about doing with the money:

Mayor Tom Potter wants a new public safety communication system.

Commissioner Sam Adams wants to plug potholes, pave gravel roads and boost the Oregon Historical Society.

Commissioner Erik Sten wants more family-friendly housing to draw schoolchildren back to the city.

Commissioner Randy Leonard wants to streamline the permit process and discount fees for new restaurants.

Commissioner Dan Saltzman wants new playgrounds and extended community center hours.

OHSThat all sounds good and well, but the money won’t stretch that far.  We’ll have to see how this plays out.  Of course, this is an Oregonian reporter talking in the article and I’m sure each Commissioner has a more articulate outline of what they’d like to see.  I know that Oregon Historical Society is in dire need of support, so I hope there is a bit of “boost” for the cultural organization in the budget.   Leonard wants money for new restaurants?  Not sure about that.

The Council will vote on how to spend the money on November 29th, so we will see.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. October 3, 2006 1:59 pm

    Interesting this comes on the same day that Jack Bog notes his shocks are a bit clunky.

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