Multnomah County voters to decide charter review process changes
Multnomah County voters will decide on a series of changes to the current charter review process this November.
A 15-person committee tasked with reviewing the county's charter — functionally a local constitution — concluded its work in July, recommending seven charter amendments, which must be approved by voters to be implemented.
Following their experience, committee members recommended revising the charter review process as laid out in the charter.
The proposed amendments would extend the timeline for the process from 11 to 18 months, allow the committee to choose its own leadership structure and require the county board to reasonably fund a public engagement process for the committee's work.
Additionally, the Office of Community Involvement would run the application and selection process for the committee. The county chair would then appoint committee members — four members from each county district — with board approval. The board must seek to appoint members from diverse backgrounds, according to the amendments.
Currently, committee members are appointed based on state senate districts that overlap with the county, with state legislators appointing members within their districts.
The changes would also remove the charter's current requirement that members serving within the same district be registered with different political parties.
Additionally, the Office of Community Involvement would be given the discretion to develop a process for filling committee vacancies.
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