New task force to advise Beaverton on climate goals
Beaverton now has a task force dedicated to advise the mayor and City Council on climate matters.
On Tuesday, March 16, the Beaverton City Council passed a resolution to establish the Beaverton climate action task force. The group will serve as an advisory group providing advice and recommendations to council members and staff on issues pertaining to Beaverton's climate action plan, which it put together in 2019.
The plan established two high level targets, four key strategies and 86 actions to mitigate and adapt to the changing climate. City officials say that community engagement is a critical element to implementing the plan, which would kick off with the task force.
"This is a long time coming to get to this work, and I want to thank staff," said Beaverton Mayor Lacey Beaty during the meeting. "This is a meaningful first step in a completion of a promise we've made to our community for a long time. While we got to where we needed to be, let's not miss the forest for the trees. This is a big night for the city, and this is a big step for us."
Lacey, during her run for mayor, promised to create a community commission to make sure the city meets its climate goal.
The task force will consist of up to 13 members who, through professional and lived experience, can provide diverse perspectives, social networks and expertise around Beaverton's climate action work, according to the city.
Members will be appointed by the mayor and confirmed by the City Council.
Recruitment will prioritize members under the age of 30 from traditionally underrepresented groups, according to the resolution. People representative of community groups, commercial groups or other organizations with an interest in climate or environmental issues will also be given priority.
City officials say those wishing to be on the task force must also have Beaverton as their primary place of residence, business or activity.
The task force's duties will include enhancing City Council awareness of community perspectives related to climate change issues and serve as a resource to the city's public engagement campaigns that promote and communicate climate action among the community.
City Councilor Marc San Soucie also wanted language added to the resolution to allow the group to chime in about the climate action plan.
"The language I suggested was (the task force) recommend to the City Council changes or additions to the climate action plan that the committee deems valuable," San Soucie said.
Along with advising the City Council, the task force will also recommend next steps for an official climate action board.
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