We live in an extraordinary city. We know it, the rest of the country knows it, and the yearly tide of newcomers certainly demonstrates the fact. We didn’t get here by accident; we’re here because of the hard work and bold ideas of the visionaries who came before us.
As wonderful as it is, Portland still faces a number of challenges. As chief of staff to one of Portland’s boldest City Commissioners, I know firsthand that none of the issues facing our City exists in a vacuum. We can’t talk about affordable housing without discussing transportation and smart civic planning; we can’t talk about fostering the creative community without discussing ways to keep the City core affordable; talking about reducing our contribution to climate change leads back to transportation, which connects back to urban planning, which connects to the need to keep our neighborhood schools healthy.
The next few years will determine whether we continue to set the standards for the nation on livability and sustainability, or whether we sit on our laurels and watch the rest of the nation surpass us. One thing is for certain—now is not the time for complacency. We need to work hard in order to protect our future.
- Improving Portland's Schools (link)
- Protecting Our Neighborhoods (link)
- Protecting Our Environment (link)
- Jobs and Business: Forging New Partnerships (link)
- Keeping Portland Affordable (link)
- Reducing the Influence of Special Interests and Opening Government to All (link)
- Ending Chronic Homelessness (link)
- Transportation (link)
- Arts and Culture (link)
- Racial Justice (link)
- Equality for All Portlanders (link)
- Public Safety and Emergency Response (link)
Improving Portland’s Schools
The most important challenge facing Portland is protecting our schools. Schools are the foundation of Portland’s future. Overcrowding, a lack of stable funding and the increasing challenges families face finding affordable homes, in safe neighborhoods, near our schools demand strong actions.
- I’m proud to have been endorsed by Stand for Children. I’m equally proud of my role in leading Portland’s “Schools, Families, Housing” Initiative during the last 15 months. I’ve also volunteered extensively at my own kids’ schools. Here’s what I’ll do to improve education in Portland for all families:
- Continue to fight for Schools, Families, Housing. With City Commissioner Erik Sten, I led this citywide initiative, which protects and restores the best qualities of Portland’s tremendous public school system through smart investments in neighborhood housing, parks and safe streets. I will continue to fight for the initiative because Portland’s future depends on strong schools and families.
- Keep neighborhood schools open. In the last year, I helped secure nearly $1 million in grants to help teachers, parents, and students improve schools and neighborhoods. As a City Commissioner, I will continue to fight to give schools and neighbors the power to keep their neighborhoods livable and open to all families.
- On the ground experience. I am a parent of two kids who attend Portland public schools, so I know what parents in the District face on a day-to-day basis. I’ve gotten involved by volunteering on fundraising, organizing, and other events to support my own kids’ schools. I’ve also volunteered to support school funding campaigns and initiatives throughout Portland. I will be proud to bring the experience and knowledge I’ve gained as a parent and a school volunteer into City Hall.
- Work for new affordable housing. I believe we need new affordable housing investments in the catchments of schools with declining enrollment and excess capacity. In addition, I will prioritize transportation safety improvements on routes that kids and families take to get to and from their schools. I will target new parks investments at sites adjacent to school sites.
- Work towards equity for all schools. I will work to ensure that the City makes equitable investments and that we focus on the most underserved schools, like Humbolt, Marshall, Jefferson, and too many more.
- Keep families in the District. I will fight to link the City’s planning efforts with our school system by ensuring the new Portland Plan focuses clearly on the needs of schools and families and that it incorporates zoning, bonuses and other incentives that will help create “complete communities” that help keep existing families in and recruit more families to Portland’s neighborhoods.
Protecting Our Neighborhoods
As the former co-chair of the Kerns Neighborhood Association, I understand that growth, graffiti, vandalism and other crimes threaten our neighborhoods. I’m proud to have endorsements from neighborhood leaders in Old Town/Chinatown, Madison South and across the city. Here’s how I’ll keep our neighborhoods livable:
- Preserve character while accommodating growth. Despite the slowing economy, there’s still a lot of infill going on in Portland. I will fight to ensure that the City preserves the character and amenities of our existing neighborhoods while still accommodating growth. I’ll work hard for design guidelines that address setbacks from existing homes, parking, scale and other features to ensure that new development fits in with older homes.
- Make the streets safer through community policing. I will work to fully fund a new police academy and to get more officers out of their cars and onto our neighborhood streets and sidewalks where they can help neighbors help themselves. I also will support more treatment programs for people addicted to drugs – the same people who commit much of the crime.
- Plan for a vibrant Portland. The Bureau of Planning is beginning a major new rewrite of Portland’s comprehensive plan. This is a great chance to fix existing problems and create terrific new opportunities. I will work to ensure the Portland plan includes provisions that address protection of trees, parks and open spaces, and that it provides incentives for developers to include child care facilities, family-size housing, parks, traffic safety and more in new developments.
- Encourage dialogue about our future. Just as important as what is in the new plan is how it is put together. I will work to ensure that regular Portlanders have lots of chances to provide input to our planners and that there is ample opportunity for neighborhood review before any decisions are made. Because I am voter-owned and using Portland’s public finance system to run my campaign, I am not beholden to developers and other special interests like my opponents. I will speak for you and make sure you are heard.
Protecting Our Environment
I’m proud to be the only candidate in this race who has the endorsement of the Oregon League of Conservation Voters and the Oregon Natural Resources Council Action PAC. As a member of City Council, protecting and enhancing the environment will be a key part of all my actions. Portland needs to be a world leader in demonstrating that a dense urban area also can be environmentally sustainable, and that will require emphasizing the environment in every decision made by the Council.
Portland is one of only a handful of cities internationally that can boast of greenhouse gas emissions that are close to 1990 levels. Portland’s efforts to concentrate growth, promote renewable energy and conservation and create alternatives to auto-based transportation are important to our past success. Continuing those policies will be essential to our future, but by themselves, they are not enough.
I will work to improve the City’s performance in three key sectors – energy, transportation and neighborhood livability - as the keys to fighting climate change.
Energy Use: Promoting conservation and renewables
My work for the Northwest Power and Conservation Council makes me uniquely qualified to help Portland increase its efforts to conserve energy and to increase use of renewables. Here’s what I’ll do as a member of City Council:
Transportation: Creating viable alternatives to cars and upgrading our infrastructure
- Implement the recommendations of Portland’s Peak Oil Task Force. The City of Portland needs to achieve a 50 percent reduction in fossil fuel use by 2030. I will support efforts to provide incentives for development that exceeds local and state energy efficiency standards and to charge fees for those who don’t to pay for the incentives.
- Lead the way on LEED standards. All buildings that use City funds should strive to meet the highest LEED standards for energy efficiency. Even affordable housing investments should seek the equivalent of LEED performance levels.
- Secure renewable municipal power. I support the City’s efforts to ensure that 100 percent of municipal energy is generated from renewable sources. I will help Portland partner with Multnomah County to share costs and benefits.
- Increase local control of energy production. I took a half-time leave from my regular city job to help with the City’s effort to purchase PGE and bring it under public ownership. Although the City was unsuccessful, our efforts helped ensure that PGE was not sold to Texas Pacific. I continue to believe that local control of locally-produced energy is the best way to ensure we focus on conservation and renewables. I support continued City involvement in the regulation of local utilities to protect ratepayers and to push for aggressive investments in clean alternative sources of energy.
I’m proud to have the endorsement of the Bike. Walk. Vote. Political Action Committee. I’m proud to have worked at Tri-Met on light rail and to have helped run a campaign to build new light rail lines in Portland.
As a City Commissioner, I will:
- Push for statewide solutions. I will help lead the charge in Salem for an increase in the gas tax to reduce fuel use and to fund transportation alternatives and infrastructure maintenance projects.
- Investigate and promote bold ideas. As a matter of principle, people who drive the most should pay the most, with exceptions for lower-income people who have no other options. Pay-as-you-go insurance, sliding fees based on gas mileage, weight or fuel types make sense. The City should implement similar policies where possible and support them when the authority to do so lies elsewhere. I believe the City should investigate the use of congestion pricing and congestion fees and that it should use the revenues generated by those policies to support alternative transportation options and the development of compact neighborhoods that allow people to get out of their cars.
- Promote bicycling and walking. I’ve been a bicycle commuter for years. Bikes are an integral part of what makes Portland such a great place to live and biking coincides with many of my personal and policy goals. Investing in more bike- and pedestrian-friendly routes and education, safety and enforcement also will be a key part of my focus on the Council. I support policies that discourage excessive parking and that support the creation of communities that allow people to walk to work and to essential services, entertainment and recreation.
- Increase bicycle safety. A thorough bicycle master plan with additional bike lanes, bike boulevards and signaling is essential. Additional safety measures need to be identified and implemented at scores of dangerous intersections throughout town. Most importantly, bikes, walking, and transit all need to be factored into the City’s comprehensive plan and implementation strategies, not only to benefit our environment but also to help solve today’s—and tomorrow’s-- transportation challenges.
- …And pedestrian safety. Portland’s efforts to be pedestrian-friendly also need a boost. This is especially important in Southwest Portland, where many neighborhoods have no sidewalks, and in growing areas in East Portland, where a lack of adequate signaling and increased traffic are resulting in pedestrian and cyclist traffic fatalities. Even one fatality is too many. Children walk and bike to school far less than they used to, with safety a primary concern. I believe that walking and biking are more than environmental issues—they are fundamental to a good quality of life.
Land Use and the Economy: Livable communities and healthy local businesses
More than 1 million people are projected to move to the Portland region in the near future. To keep our city livable, I will fight for creative, equitable, effective policies and investments in our transportation system and changes to zoning and development patterns that help people rely less on cars and more on other forms of transportation.
- Maintain strong land-use policies. Smart planning is at the core of Portland’s shared goals of reducing automobile dependence, efficient delivery of City services, and ongoing livability. I will fight to support the region’s land-use policies, so that Portland doesn’t become the next Houston.
- Support small businesses. I strongly believe in supporting local small businesses, which provide the majority of job growth, and which, along with home ownership, provide the best vehicle for the average person to build wealth and financial stability for themselves and their families. To help ensure this, I’ll work to see that the Portland Development Commission is focused on supporting small businesses with technical assistance, flexible financing programs and storefront improvement programs.
Jobs and Business: Forging new partnerships
Portland needs to do more to help local businesses thrive. Finding and keeping a good job is essential to a good quality of life. I regularly hear stories–even from former city employees who now run businesses–that the City is hard to work with. Here’s how I want to help:
- Cutting through the red tape. We need to create a better system for providing permits to small businesses. I will work to create a “one-stop shopping” system that ensures that all City bureaus cooperate and participate seamlessly in processing permit applications for small business. I also will use my experience cutting through red tape to improve local regulations that cost business too much time and money.
- Expanding on what we’ve got. I believe the City should create a program targeted at helping existing local small businesses expand – particularly those working on sustainability and renewable energy.
- Helping local businesses help themselves. A robust and vibrant economy for locally-owned businesses keeps Portland innovative, creative and unique. I believe supporting and growing local businesses is the most effective approach for creating living-wage jobs. I will work to help local business districts organize and market themselves to surrounding neighborhoods and beyond Portland’s borders.
- Reforming license fees. I support increasing the amount of salary small business owners may draw before they are subject to Portland’s business license fee. I would like to work with my Council colleagues to create a new Economic Advisory Board to provide independent and expert reviews and advice about the impacts of new policies on small business.
- Giving businesses a voice. I also understand that business owners can’t leave their work during the middle of the day to participate in City Council meetings. I will work to use new technology to provide additional ways for business owners to weigh in on Council decisions. I will work with every neighborhood business district to craft priorities for my office. I will support continued funding of the Association of Portland Neighborhood Business Associations.
Keeping Portland Affordable
Portland is at a crossroads. We are at risk of becoming a victim of our own popularity, with rising housing prices pushing middle- and lower-income families and individuals out of the City’s center. I’m running for City Council to make sure that doesn’t happen.
I’m proud that Portland’s leader on affordable housing – Erik Sten – has endorsed me in this race. I’m also proud that a host of grassroots housing activists are supporting my campaign. This is what I’ll do as City Commissioner:
- Hold PDC accountable. I will keep a close eye on the Portland Development Commission’s required 30 percent set-aside for affordable housing. We need to ensure that PDC’s reporting is thorough, accurate and provided early enough for City Council to be able to adjust things during the budget process. We also need to further explore ways in which that money can be used throughout the City, so that it goes to the communities that need it most. This may mean that we need to find ways to move the funding outside of urban renewal areas.
- Prioritize spending on those who need it most. I also will fight to ensure that PDC allocates enough Tax Incremental Financing (TIF) dollars to permanent supportive housing and housing for those earning 0 to 30 percent of MFI. When we have such limited resources, we should prioritize those who need assistance the most. If, despite City Council oversight, audits and other measures, PDC fails to fully invest available TIF resources in affordable housing projects, I believe City Council should consider reallocating those resources directly to qualifying projects.
- Encourage homeownership. The City needs to do everything it can to encourage homeownership by providing resources and information about assistance programs, particularly to vulnerable populations who may fall into predatory mortgage schemes. As a member of City Council, I will work to make sure that every Portlander has access to the resources they need, and I will fight for initiatives that will increase homeownership for people of color. I will challenge realtors, lenders and title companies to substantially increase the number of families of color who successfully purchase their own homes.
- Fight discrimination in housing. I will fight for more resources to investigate and enforce fair housing laws. Too often, Portlanders with Section 8 vouchers are discriminated against when trying to rent an apartment. I will fight to ensure that landlords and property owners may not base their rental decisions on a tenants use of Section 8 vouchers. I will also work to support the efforts of the City’s Quality Rental Housing Workgroup, which is examining Portland’s rental housing stock, and I will make recommendations to update health and safety codes to address issues like lead and mold.
- Support non-profit housing. I believe the City needs to invest more in non-profit based rental housing. Non-profit landlords are mission-driven. While they can’t take all the swings out of the market, they certainly are in a better position to maintain rental units instead of selling them into the condo market when the price is right. I will work with housing advocates to craft a ballot measure that provides additional money for affordable housing investments.
- Updating the Portland Plan. The City’s Bureau of Planning currently is re-writing Portland’s Comprehensive Plan and parts of the zoning code through a project called the Portland Plan. I will fight to ensure that issues related to rental units and affordability are included in the plan. Along with Commissioner Sten, I’ve already pushed the Bureau of Planning to focus on affordability and I will continue to do so as Commissioner.
- Continuing the Schools, Families, Housing Initiative. Through the City’s Schools, Families, Housing Initiative, which I helped lead, the City targeted investments in affordable family housing in areas where schools have excess capacity. The initiative also created a community grants program and provided emergency rent assistance to families in need. As a member of City Council, I’ll fight to continue this important program.
- Working to increase child care options. In today's Portland both parents often have to work to make ends meet. Finding safe, affordable and accessible child care is a challenge for parents and the businesses that employ them. I believe access to child care makes Portland a more competitive city. I will work with employers, developers and the Bureau of Planning to find ways to increase the number of child care options for working families.
Reducing the Influence of Special Interests and Opening Government to All
I believe government should be transparent, efficient, and responsive. Anything less is a disservice to the people. But all too often, government becomes hijacked by the moneyed interests who bankroll campaigns and then keep their favored politicians stocked with gifts. Even leaders with the best of intentions can fall into ugly traps, betraying the reasons they became public servants in the first place.
I am proud to be the only publicly-financed candidate in the race to fill Erik Sten’s seat on the Portland City Council. All the other candidates failed or chose not to qualify for the City’s Voter-Owned Elections Program.
- Limiting the influence of money in politics. The best tool we have to combat the pervasive influence of political money is Portland’s landmark Voter-Owned Elections program. Hundreds of my supporters and I gathered 1,700 signatures and $5 contributions in a record two weeks, helping me to qualify. This means that when I’m on City Council, Portland residents will never have to guess where my allegiances are. I’m here to work for every Portlander, not the usual suspects who already have access to the halls of government.
- Opening the doors to City Hall. The Voter-Owned Elections program also helps to encourage “non-traditional” candidates to run, since they don’t have to spend hours and hours every day dialing for dollars and trading in favors. Instead, they can spend their time talking to Portlanders about the issues that are important to them. That’s what I’ve done for the past two months.
- …And keeping them open. I fully support the City’s lobbying disclosure regulations, so that Portlanders know who is talking to whom—and what about. I believe we should consider lowering the current threshold in order to get a better picture of lobbying activities in City Hall. I also support the requirement that all City officials disclose the gifts they receive as part of their job. Even if most gifts are innocuous, it’s important to know who’s playing Santa with City officials.
- Keeping tabs on elected officials. Since elected officials are here to work for you, I support the disclosure of City Commissioners’ calendars on a monthly—or even weekly—basis. It’s important for you to know how we spend our time.
Ending Chronic Homelessness
We are in our fourth year of the 10 Year Plan to End Chronic Homelessness, and we’ve made a lot of strides. Ending homelessness doesn’t mean that we can end every individual or household crisis that may spiral people onto the streets. But we can end the notion that homelessness is inevitable in this city and that seeing people living on the streets is acceptable.
I am proud that during my 15 months in City Hall, I successfully negotiated substantial increases in the amount of money being allocated to ending chronic homelessness. Numerous homeless activists are supporting my campaign. We have a lot of work yet to do, and here’s where we’ll start:
- Continuing work on the 10 Year Plan. Two very extensive street counts have documented that homelessness in Portland decreased by 39 percent between January 2005 and January 2007. If we keep moving people directly into housing, building supportive housing for chronically homeless adults, and working with Multnomah County to provide services with housing, I’m confident that we can end chronic homelessness by 2015. Maintaining our momentum will require activism, guts, leadership and passion. I will not compromise my commitment to our City’s most vulnerable people.
- Expanding access to services. We need to focus on making sure people who have moved off the streets have access to job training and employment. The full-service Day Access Center will help address that, but we must fight to make sure the center and its services are adequately funded.
- Providing rent assistance to families who need it. Thousands of Portlanders experience homelessness for several weeks or months each year—and nearly half people are families with children. That is unacceptable in our great city. Through the Schools, Families, Housing Initiative, we have given rent assistance to families with school-aged children through the county’s Touchstone Program. By helping families and individuals through occasional rough patches, we can keep provide the buffer needed to keep them off the streets.
- Treating everyone fairly and humanely. I cannot support any law that targets vulnerable populations. There should be no compromise at all on protecting the civil rights of all residents of Portland. Period. If we have laws that are selectively enforced against homeless people, I will fight to expose the selective enforcement and stop it.
- Giving police the resources they need. I opposed the Drug-Free Zones because of their clear constitutional problems and the racial disparities in their enforcement. I applaud Mayor Potter’s decision to discontinue them. That said, I think police need to be able to effectively deal with the small handful of people who are dangerous. I will support policies that provide the police with discretion to deal with bad actors as long as that discretion comes with accountability. I also support more funding for additional police and will make that funding a priority.
I’ve been a bike commuter for years; I can remember a time when there wasn’t congestion in our bike lanes. I know firsthand the benefits that come with not having to depend on a car—for my health, the environment, Portland’s roads, and other commuters. The bicycle remains one of humanity’s greatest inventions, and must be among our solutions to traffic congestion and climate change. I’m proud that Portland has consistently been ranked at the top of bike friendly cities lists, and I’m very proud to be the only candidate in this race who received an endorsement from Portland’s Bike. Walk. Vote. Political Action Committee.
Alternative transportation isn’t just about the environment and public health, however. By providing transportation options that don’t require the use of a car, we can keep the City’s arterials open to those who need or choose to drive. That’s good for commuters, and it’s good for the freight traffic our economy depends on.
- Plan for more bikes… I will fight to increase funding for the City’s Bike Master Plan, which is a vital to identifying ways to address Portland’s transportation needs. We spend far less right now on bikes as a percentage than they represent in overall transportation. It’s a good deal for the City, but we need to do more to make biking safer, therefore getting more people on bikes and out of their cars (which makes more room on the roads for people who choose to drive!).
- …On and off the road. I also support the creation of more trails for mountain bikers. We need dedicated areas for this sport to avoid conflicts with runners, hikers and other trail users.
- Safety first. We need to make the City’s streets safer for bikes and pedestrians. This includes improving safety at crossings, finding ways to help neighborhoods put in sidewalks where needed, expanding our system of bike boulevards to decrease conflicts between bikers and motorists, and supporting the Safe Routes To Schools program, which aims to make transportation to and from school safer for children.
- Alternative transportation depends on smart growth. I’m a strong proponent of public transportation, in whatever form is appropriate for a given route. But all of the funding in the world on buses and light rail won’t mean anything if we don’t continue to be smart and vigilant in how we plan our City’s growth. When I’m on City Council, I will fully support efforts to limit sprawl and encourage healthy, all-encompassing neighborhoods. I believe Portlanders should be able to work, shop, and play in their neighborhood without having to drive to get there.
- The right bridge to Portland, and Vancouver. As someone wise once said, building more lanes to deal with congestion is like buying bigger pants to deal with your obesity. I agree that we must ensure that freight can move easily along I-5, but I want to make sure that we do it the right way. I believe we need to consider alternative forms of transportation over the Columbia, and I think we should test congestion pricing and other demand management techniques prior to any new construction. I¦m in favor of tolling, particularly on commercial vehicles, to ensure that users pay their fair share of the costs of the project (with provisions for low-income people).
Arts and Culture
Portland’s arts community is vital to the City. It gives the City an economic boost and has gained us favorable attention from around the country. More importantly, though, Portland’s creative community is an irrepressible part of our City’s soul. I will work to make sure City Council does everything it can to help foster the arts.
- Funding and public investment. We absolutely need to increase our public funding for the arts, and I’m committed to finding the best, most productive ways to do that. In terms of public investment, we are woefully below average—that’s a shame in its own right, but even more so considering how much the City prides itself on our creative output.
- Affordability for artists. It should come as no surprise that one of the most beneficial things we can do to help the creative community is to make sure they can afford to live in the City. That is why I will fight to maintain a cheap housing stock in the central City and hold the Portland Development Commission accountable for its 30 percent spending requirement on affordable housing.
- Where you can live, and work. It will also be important to maintain an adequate stock of cheap flex spaces in the central City. Affordable live/work spaces like the kind found in the central eastside are a large reason why artists and musicians have flocked to Portland instead of more expensive cities like Seattle and San Francisco. During the upcoming review of the Portland Plan, I’ll work to make sure these types of spaces remain available.
- Updating performance space laws. The City needs to do more to make sure that young people have access to creative outlets. One the first things we can do is encourage the OLCC to update its rules on minors in event spaces. Given the right conditions and control plans, there’s no reason why minors can’t be in performance spaces that serve alcohol. Updating the rules will be good for venues, good for musicians and artists, good for minors, and good for the City.
- A space for art. I will explore the possibility of a City-sponsored all-ages music venue/community space. The idea would be for City Council to get the ball rolling on obtaining a space, and then help a non-profit take over management and booking, ensuring equitable use of the venue. We would need to draw on the creative talent pool that Portland is blessed with in order to make it happen.
As progressive as Portland may be on some issues, it’s abundantly clear that many minorities feel ignored and disrespected when it comes to critical decisions. Portland is one of the whitest cities in the country, and its commitment to liberal ideals cannot take the place of the experience of being a member of a minority group. However limited our awareness may be by our own personal experiences, I strongly believe that everyone has the ability and the responsibility to fight for justice for people of all racial and ethnic backgrounds.
Good things are happening in Portland to advance racial justice. The fast-growing Latino community in Portland is coalescing in an effort to claim its rightful political voice—a welcome development. Portland’s African-American community, with its traditional base in North and Northeast Portland, is determined to thrive in the face of the powerful forces of gentrification and hold together a sense of community. The very large Native American community in Portland is demanding that it be recognized, counted, and included in public policy decisions including housing, schools and parks—and it is past time that this recognition and respect be given to the original residents of this land.
Portland has a rich immigrant community, including large numbers of Portland residents who came here seeking freedom from Southeast Asia, Slavic Europe, or the Horn of Africa. Portland State University enjoys strong connections to Iranian, Turkish and Arab communities, providing Portland with a gateway to a better cross-cultural exchange of ideas and understanding during this critical period in foreign affairs and a shrinking global community.
I believe life in Portland only gets better from an increasingly diverse population. I support efforts to ensure that employment opportunities are representative of Portland’s population, and that opportunities for home ownership are equal across racial lines. I believe we should celebrate our racial and ethnic diversity in our daily lives, with a conscious goal of making Portland a place where everyone feels welcome and able to thrive.
In that regard, I will work with others on the Council and in the community to implement the recommendations that arise from Mayor Tom Potter’s Racial Profiling Task Force and the pending review of the City’s Independent Police Review program.
Equality for All Portlanders
I believe in full recognition of the rights of all people under the law, including the rights and responsibilities of marriage. I support provisions to ensure that city contractors do not discriminate against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people in any way, including the provision of health care and retirement benefits. I believe these are basic civil rights which are guaranteed by the United States Constitution.
Public Safety and Emergency Response
Public safety is one of the City’s most important day-to-day functions. Our firefighters, police officers, and 911 operators do a fantastic job of keeping Portland safe, frequently under very difficult situations. Here’s what I’ll do as a member of City Council:
- Secure adequate funding. I will support the creation of an additional police training academy. I will fight to win the funds needed to ensure that our Police Bureau is fully staffed. I will put a strong emphasis on community policing.
- Improve trust between the community and the Police Bureau. I will fight to implement the more than 20 recommendations that arose from the recent report on Independent Police Review. In particular, I will act promptly to hire more staff for IPR, to create more active Council engagement in IPR, to improve communication about complaint status, to provide better outreach about citizens’ rights and options to file complaints, and to publish an annual report about police oversight.
- Give officers the resources they need. I will work to improve the conduct of all officers by providing more resources, better training, clearer policies, closer supervision and more assertive independent oversight. Finally, I will work to hire more police and to get more officers out of their cars and onto the sidewalks to make our neighborhoods safer from gangs and violent crime.