Mayor makes equity a priority for Fiscal Year 2015-16 City budget

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October 21, 2014

PORTLAND – Mayor Charlie Hales announced last week to City Bureau Directors that equity is one of three specific priorities in preparing the City’s Fiscal Year 2015-16 budget.

Hales said he will focus any new General Fund resources on requests that make measureable progress in one or more of the following areas:

  • Equity and Opportunity: bolstering economic and housing opportunity for all Portlanders, as well as equity in service delivery
  • Complete Neighborhoods: extending Portland’s vaunted livability to more areas of the City
  • Emergency Preparedness: equipping bureau operations and our citizens to better withstand a disaster

“I am excited and encouraged that Mayor Hales is prioritizing equity in the City’s budget process,” said Dante James, Office of Equity and Human Rights director. “Tying equity to City bureaus’ budgets ensures that leaders are considering the impacts of their programs and policies on all Portlanders. It’s another positive step to institutionalizing this work within Portland city government.”

Effective last fiscal year, bureaus are required to use a Budget Equity Assessment Tool developed by the Office of Equity and Human Rights in preparing their budgets. The tool guides bureau leaders and their Budget Advisory Committees to determine how budget requests or decisions benefit and/or burden communities, specifically communities of color and people with disabilities.

Portland’s Office of Equity and Human Rights provides education and technical support to City staff and elected officials, leading to recognition and removal of systemic barriers to fair and just distribution of resources, access, and opportunity; starting with issues of race and disability.

For more information, please contact Jeff Selby at

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