Independent District Commission Overview

Small wooden figures that look like people are connected by lines, showing the concept of creating maps.
Thirteen community members on Portland's Independent District Commission will establish four geographic districts for future city council elections.


The Independent District Commission is charged with preparing and adopting a plan to divide Portland into four districts for the election of city councilors.

Roles and Responsibilities

The Independent District Commission is responsible for adopting district map and plans by Sept. 1, 2023, for a list of members with bios, you can visit our Meet Your Commissioners page. The Independent District Commission will be responsible for:

  • Holding a citywide public hearing early in the process to engage Portlanders on district criteria
  • Holding at least two public hearings in each proposed district before voting to adopt a district plan
  • Ensuring district maps are consistent with state and federal laws and criteria

The Independent District Commission requires that 9 of its 13 members approve vote to approve their district plan, and if fewer than 9 approve, the most recent plan is sent to City Council for consideration. If the District Commission approves the plan, no further action is needed. 


The District Commission must have its work done by September 1, 2023. Below is high level overview of the Commission's key milestones: 

  • March 2023 — Release draft district criteria for community input & hold public hearing.
  • April 2023 — Deliberate on input received & vote on draft district plan criteria.
  • May 2023 — Deliberate & vote on district plan.
  • June 2023 — Release district plan for community input & notice public hearings.
  • July 2023 — Hold eight public hearings, two in each proposed district.
  • August 2023 — Deliberations & vote district plan.
  • September 2023 — District Commissioners term end.

Independent District Commission Workplan, Feb. 2023322.87 KB

Independent District Commission Meeting Schedule, March 2023130.89 KB


The Independent District Commission is composed of 13 Portland residents who represent a diversity of race, gender, age and geography. Members were appointed by Mayor Wheeler and approved by the City Council from a field of 282 applicants. To learn more about the Commissioners, visit our Meet Your Commissioners page.


To learn how to engage with the District Commission and for future engagement opportunities please visit Community Engagement section of our website. 

District Criteria

The Independent District Commission will use the voter-approved district criteria which requires that each district, as nearly as practicable:

  • will be contiguous and compact,
  • utilize existing geographic or political boundaries,
  • not divide communities of common interest,
  • be connected by transportation links, and
  • be of equal population.

No district will be drawn for the purpose of favoring any political party, incumbent elected official or other person, or drawn for the purpose of diluting the voting strength of any language or ethnic minority group.

The Independent District Commission may set additional criteria, consistent with state and federal law. The Independent District Commission has chosen to not set additional district criteria. 


For questions, please email or call 3-1-1.