Why I'm running
I'm running because every worker in Portland deserves decent working conditions. We passed paid sick leave; now, we need to give workers the right to meaningful advance notice of their work schedules. Too many employers in low-wage industries like fast food and retail often don't tell workers until the last minute what days and hours they'll be working. That makes it impossible for the workers to arrange for childcare or otherwise organize their lives. The Oregon Legislature passed an obnoxious bill that prohibits Oregon cities from addressing scheduling, but the prohibition expires in 2017. When that time comes, we need to be ready to act. I plan on leading the City Council in moving on this, so we can be ready to enact legislation as soon as the prohibition expires.
I'm running because Portland should be a city where, in every neighborhood, it's safe for kids to walk or bike to school, for seniors to walk to bus stops … indeed, where everyone has the option of walking, taking transit, or biking for many of their trips. That's important because people who walk and bike more are healthier, and since we’re all in the same insurance pools, healthier people reduce health care costs for all us. Also, if you're walking, biking, or taking transit, you're cutting down on your carbon emissions, and doing your part in the greatest struggle in human history - the fight against climate disruption. Speaking of which, we're also in the process of replacing all the light bulbs in our street lights with LED lights. That will reduce energy use and carbon emissions, and will save the city millions of dollars, while providing safe lighting in every neighborhood around Portland.
I'm running because we need to maintain and repair our streets and invest in safety upgrades in East Portland. I certainly made some mistakes in the street fee discussion, but I didn't give up. I came back to the issue with a new perspective and built a broad coalition of support for the voter approved gas tax that will fund fixing our streets and creating safe routes for kids to walk to school.
I'm running because we need to make sure that Portland survives and thrives after a major earthquake. I'm proud that we grabbed a leftover piece of an old FEMA grant to help some people retrofit their houses, and now we're applying for another grant to continue that program. The safety of this city is a top priority, and preparing for a natural disaster will not only ensure that our families and friends are safe, but it will also help reduce the toll that such a disaster could bring. Finding ways to help homeowners and businesses protect their property in the face of an earthquake protects us all from the costs of massive rebuilding.
I'm running because we need to address the crisis around housing availability and affordability in Portland-Metro. I support proposals housing advocates have pushed, like lifting the legislative ban on inclusionary zoning, and I have been very vocal about our need to find new, innovative solutions for our immediate and long term housing needs, and invest in and support the development of additional units.
In today’s cynical media environment, people rarely hear anything good about anything government has done or might do. Our campaign will take the message directly to the voters — a third of a million people - we can have effective, progressive, fiscally responsible government in Portland.