Metro to consider $475 million parks bond on June 6
The Metro Council is expected to refer a $475 million bond measure to ballot to continue funding is regional preservation and parks program at its June 6 meeting.
The measure is to be considered by the regional elected government is intended for the Nov. 5, 2019, general election.
The measure does not say what properties will be purchased at which locations, how much will be spent to maintain and improve its exiting properties, and how much will be shared with other governments Those decisions will be made if it passes.
A staff report describes six program areas to be funded by the bond, however:
Protect and restore land: Protect and connect greater Portland's special places, especially river and stream banks, oak and prairie habitat, wetlands and culturally significant sites, by purchasing land from willing sellers and restoring it to support plants, animals and people.
Support local projects: Distribute money to cities, counties and park providers across greater Portland to protect land, restore habitat, and build and care for parks that connect people to nature in local communities.
Award community grants: Support innovative approaches to caring for nature and creating public access at the community scale by awarding Nature in Neighborhoods grants, with an emphasis on historically marginalized communities.
Take care of Metro parks: Provide safe, welcoming places to connect with nature by completing newer nature parks and maintaining water systems, trails, bathrooms and other amenities at older parks like Oxbow and Blue Lake.
Create trails for walking and biking: Secure land to build new trails and construct missing sections, fulfilling greater Portland's vision for a network of trails where people can relax, exercise and commute.
Advance large-scale community visions: Help deliver large-scale projects that uplift communities by leveraging nature to achieve benefits such as job opportunities, affordable housing and safe, reliable transportation.
Metro currently manages more than 17,000 acres of parks, trails and natural areas across the greater Portland region, including such well-known places as Oxbow and Blue Lake parks, as well as lesserknown natural areas from Cornelius to Oregon City to Gresham. Some of the properties were bought and are being maintained by measures previously approved by Metro voters.
The council is also considering referring a regional transportation funding measure to the November 2020 ballot. The amount and exact projects it will finance have yet to be determined, although some of the money will help support the planned Southwest Corridor MAX line.
You can find the documents supporting the 2019 measure here.
You can read a previous Portland Tribune story on the issue here.
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