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Portland, OR Receives Competitive Grant Award to Kickstart Local Municipal Financial Empowerment Efforts

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Portland, OR Receives Competitive Grant Award to Kickstart Local Municipal Financial Empowerment Efforts

Portland, OR Chosen as One of Ten Cities To Receive Award; Will Identify Strategies to Financially Empower Residents

Portland, OR – The City of Portland, along with theCities for Financial Empowerment Fund (CFE Fund) announced their selection as one of ten cities to receive a planning grant and technical assistance to identify and plan for local municipal financial empowerment strategic priorities. The CFE Fund’s CityStart initiative, with support from JPMorgan Chase and others, offers mayors and their administrations a structured approach to identify financial empowerment goals, convene stakeholders for sustainable success, develop concrete strategies, and ultimately craft an actionable blueprint rooted in local priorities and opportunities. Portland will receive an intensive 6-9 month technical assistance engagement partnership, along with a $20,000 planning grant. In addition to Portland, other selected cities chosen through a competitive process include: Albuquerque, NM; Anchorage, AK: Dallas, TX; Durham, NC; El Paso, TX; Fort Worth, TX; Portland, OR; Rochester, NY; Saint Paul, MN; and Tulsa, OK.

“A key goal of my administration to is create opportunities for individual community members to share in Portland's economic development success and gain access to financial empowerment opportunities,” says Mayor Wheeler. “As our local economy continues to grow, it’s important to me that everyone in our community has the opportunity to achieve financial empowerment. From the small business owner to the working family, I believe we can all share in Portland's economic growth and fiscal security, with the right framework and resources. This assistance and grant from the CFE Fund will help us empower even more hardworking people in our community.”

“Cities control a host of policies, programs, and funding streams that can transform the lives of residents with low incomes on a large scale. Across the nation, more and more city leaders are embracing high-quality financial empowerment programs to improve the financial stability of their city residents and communities,” said Jonathan Mintz, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund. “We congratulate Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler and look forward to working with him to empower Portland residents, and we thank JPMorgan Chase for their longstanding commitment to and investment in municipal financial empowerment.”

The CityStart initiative draws on the CFE Fund’s extensive programmatic work with local government leaders in over 60 cities, connecting critical on-the-ground insights about the impact of financial instability on families, communities, and municipal budgets with tangible, measurable, and sustainable municipal strategies to improve families' financial lives. Under Mayor Wheeler’s CityStart initiative, the Mayor, working with the CFE Fund, will construct and then host a day-long municipal financial empowerment "boot camp" event that brings together key local constituencies. Based on issues identified in the boot camp, the City of Portland will craft its municipal financial empowerment blueprint identifying actionable implementation steps. CityStart cities have historically leveraged their engagement with the CFE Fund to further their commitment to this work.

About the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund (CFE Fund)

The CFE Fund supports municipal efforts to improve the financial stability of households by leveraging opportunities unique to local government. By translating cutting edge experience with large scale programs, research, and policy in cities of all sizes, the CFE Fund assists mayors and other local leaders to identify, develop, fund, implement, and research pilots and programs that help families build assets and make the most of their financial resources. The CFE Fund also supports the award-winning Cities for Financial Empowerment Coalition, a 10-year-old organization whose invited member cities share best practices and cutting edge strategies for municipal financial empowerment success. For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter at @CFEFund.