HELP BRING PARTICIPATORY BUDGETING TO OREGON
Participatory budgeting can't begin until elected officials decide to share real power and delegate decision making to the community. And that won't happen until we make our voices heard and demand real participatory democracy. What are the most immediate opportunities to expand PB in Oregon? Here are a three:
Help Fund a 2nd Cycle of
Youth Voice Youth Vote PB!
1. Support Proposed Phase I Charter Amendments on your Portland ballot this November: Portland is the only major City on the West Coast that hasn't launched municipal participatory budgeting. Portland's antiquated 109-year old Commission form of government is among the reasons. The City charter amendments proposed by the Portland Charter Commission that will appear on the November ballot won't require PB. But they will provide for more unified and integrated city administration accountable to a much more equitable system of district representation and more participatory and meaningful rank choice voting. All these things will improve and democratize our municipal government, making it more that Portland will become an innovator in participatory democracy once again. Vote Yes the Portland Charter amendments on your ballot this November and get involved in the ballot measure campaign to democratize Portland's municipal government.
2. Advocate for a PB mandate in Phase II of Portland Charter Reform: The Portland Charter Commission's work is not finished. In July, the Charter Commission started Phase II of its work. Thanks to a lot of grassroots advocacy, participatory budgeting is near the top the list of Phase II topics they will consider. A diverse coalition of organizations have endorsed a PB charter mandate fashioned after the one Boston voters adopted in November 2021. Make your voice heard to the Portland Charter Commission on September 13 and urge them to include a similar PB mandate in Phase II of their work. Folks can also attend weigh-in at a Charter Commission listening session 5:30-7pm September 15. Learn more about PB & Charter Reform here.
3. Urge the Gresham City Council to Fund Youth PB with Local ARPA Funds: We need your help persuading the Gresham City Council to fund youth PB! In October the Gresham City Council will vote to allocate its remaining $13 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. We have advocated sharing power with Gresham youth disproportionally impacted by COVID to decide how to spend $1 million in ARPA funds for relief and recovery projects. The Council could do this by funding a 2nd cycle of Youth Voice Youth Vote PB. Lend your voice to this effort by emailing the Gresham City Council before or testify at the September 20 Council meeting. If you are testifying be sure to sign up 24 hours in advance.