Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) is committed to establishing a more financially sustainable direction that aligns equitable service and funding levels – for the long term.
As part of that commitment, bureau leadership began the Sustainable Future Program work by holding a Council Work Session on November 26, 2019, to get feedback about how best to align community expectations with funding levels.
With support from City Council to pursue alternative funding, as a first step, the Bureau prepared a 5-year local option levy to maintain neighborhood parks appropriately, improve access and safety, provide equitable recreation programs, and proactively care for its natural areas and urban forest. Portland voters overwhelmingly passed the local option levy in November 2020.
Work towards long-term financial sustainability continues, with a near-term focus on preparing to deliver services funded by the parks levy successfully.
Levy information from Portland Parks & Recreation
Except for the website link(s), this information was reviewed by the Oregon Secretary of State’s Office for compliance with ORS 260.432.
Alternative Funding Options
To assist the research of possible funding alternatives, PP&R convened community members on an Alternative Funding Task Force. Additional input was sought from the Trust for Public Land, Portland State University’s Northwest Economic Research Center, and experts from across the Bureau and City.
Of the six funding options discussed at the work session, four options were highlighted for further consideration:
- General obligation bond
- Special district
- Local option levy
- Prepared food and beverage tax
- Transient lodging tax (not recommended)
- Cell phone tax (not recommended)
In addition, at the work session Council instructed PP&R to explore an income tax as a possible funding option.