Politics

April 3, 2013

Portland manager's budget challenged by councilor

Mark Rees' proposal is $10 million more than the current budget and would increase property taxes 3.3 percent.

By Randy Billings rbillings@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

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City Councilor John Anton

John Ewing / Staff Photographer

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City Manager Mark Rees

Gordon Chibroski / Staff Photographer

Related Documents

PDF: City Manager's Proposed Budget

Rees has said that grant was roughly $600,000, but the Federal Emergency Management Agency's website shows Portland's 2010 grant as more than $1 million. The city was not granted an extension this year, said city spokeswoman Nicole Clegg.

Rees has proposed paying for the firefighters with additional revenue from contracts with companies that pay for confined-space rescues.

However, Anton said the council was clear in saying the firefighter positions would be eliminated if the grant was not renewed.

Duson also expressed concern about the city manager's proposal, saying she did not want the positions funded through taxes or by the dedicated revenue source proposed by Rees.

Anton said he supports some new initiatives in the budget, including the purchase of 22 so-called big-belly, solar-powered trash compactors and a request from the mayor to fully fund the HOME team, which does outreach to Portland's homeless.

Those initiatives align with previously stated goals of the council, Anton said, whereas increased staffing for permits and inspections may not.

On Thursday, the Finance Committee will review proposed budgets for health and human services, planning and urban development, fire and police.

The full City Council is scheduled to vote on the school budget on May 6 and vote on the combined city-school budget on May 20.

Randy Billings can be contacted at 791-6346 or at:

rbillings@pressherald.com

Twitter: @randybillings 

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