Metro’s regional transportation investment measure is nearing finalization, with a draft plan of projects and program investments available on their website, upcoming listening sessions scheduled starting June 30, and a referral decision by Metro Council expected to take place on July 16. The Getting There Together Coalition strongly supports referral of this transportation package.
Join a Metro Listening Session June 30 – July 9
Metro Councilors want to hear from community members as they decide whether to ask voters to consider the transportation funding measure for November 2020. Four listening sessions will be held in the coming weeks, and will begin at 5:30pm. The sessions have a geographic focus, but anyone is welcome to attend whichever session date works best for you regardless of where you live, work, or travel. Metro Council will also hold a referral hearing on July 16 beginning at 2:00pm.
All sessions will be held via zoom. RSVP to the Coalition’s Facebook event pages for updates from us!
- June 30: Clackamas
- July 6: East Multnomah
- July 7: Portland
- July 9: Washington Co
- July 16: Metro Council referral hearing
As a broad and diverse coalition of more than 60 community based organizations, the Getting There Together Coalition brought forward needs and perspectives from BIPOC-led organizations, youth, older adults, people with disabilities, working class, and transit dependent folks. We fought for and won the inclusion of more safe, accessible, clean, and affordable transportation options for people of all ages and abilities, and in communities that have long asked for these investments. Our advocacy and your voice have improved the package overall, and emphasized and prioritized safety, transit, and accessibility investments in regional Equity Focus Areas, which are Census tracts that represent communities where the rate of people of color (POC) or people with limited English proficiency (LEP) is greater than the regional average, or people with income equal to or less than 200% of the Federal Poverty Level.
Metro Referral Hearing Scheduled
Metro Council will hold a Referral Hearing on July 16, where they’ll hear testimony before deciding whether to refer the transportation package to the November 2020 ballot. RSVP to our 7/16 Facebook event for updates.
The Coalition Supports Referring this Package to the Voters
By our assessment, the final package includes 22% of package dollars allocated to safety-specific investments, and 59% of package dollars allocated to safety and transit projects not including the SW corridor. Some of the elements of the measure that the Coalition supports:
- Inclusion of corridors in East Portland/East Multnomah County: 122nd & 162nd
- Safety and transit investments across the region: 82nd Ave, McLoughlin Blvd, Tualatin Valley Highway, Powell Blvd., Burnside, Central City Portland, 122nd Ave, 162nd Ave, and in the Albina Vision area
- 22% of package dollars allocated to safety-specific investments, including $520M in long-asked-for safety and transit investments on 82nd Ave, which will support the needs and vision of the most diverse neighborhood in the region, the Jade District, and allow the corridor to be transferred from ODOT to the City of Portland jurisdiction
- 59% of package dollars allocated to safety and transit projects (79% when including SW Corridor LRT investments), including “Better Bus” on all 16 investment corridors. These investments prioritize transit on our roadways, through bus lanes, signal prioritization, and other tools that keep riders moving even in congested traffic.
- A reduced scope on Highway 212 that focuses on multimodal investments in pedestrian, bicycle, and transit access
- Investment in bike/ped projects including trails in every county: Council Creek Trail, Alderwood-Killingsworth Path planning, Trolley Trail
- Better bus improvements on every corridor, through transit priority signals, bus-only lanes, curb extensions at bus stops, etc.
- Expansion of Portland Public School’s wildly successful YouthPass program into an ongoing Regional Youth Transit Access Pass for all 14-18 year olds in the region, with continued expansion targets toward free passes for all youth 18 and under
- Funding to support converting public buses to electric or low-carbon, which will enable the region to meet its stated goals of not buying any more diesel buses after 2024
- Annual funding to support residential and business community stability through anti-displacement strategies, including consideration for Participatory Budgeting with communities
- Annual funding for Safe Routes to School, safety hot spots, transit reliability, and access to destinations via walking and biking connections
The Measure will be financed by a combination of Vehicle Registration Fees ($56/year) and a Business Tax (0.65% of total payroll) with a small business exemption (fewer than 25 employees). Collection of any fees or taxes would not begin until January 2022.
The Coalition has concerns about non-progressive financing such as Vehicle Registration Fees. There were also two projects that the Coalition opposed throughout the process that remain in the measure, however they are a smaller part of the measure in comparison to the rest of the investments we worked hard to include, that will benefit people of all ages and abilities, and in communities that have long asked for these investments.