It’s that time of year. People with clipboards (including some League members) are asking voters to sign petitions to put ballot measures on the November ballot. Should you sign? You definitely should think about whether you really support the petition and would like it to become law. Ask for an explanation of what the measure would do and read the ballot title. The League of Women Voters cautions you to “Think Before You Ink.”
The Portland LWV supports this proposal. Our support is based on our Climate Change and Equality of Opportunity positions. It would fund renewable energy and energy efficiency projects and clean-energy jobs training for disadvantaged workers. Income for the Fund would be from a 1% supplemental business license surcharge on large retail corporations with over $1 billion a year in national revenue and $500,000 in Portland sales. (Revenue from groceries and medicine would be exempted.)
More than 100 League members and nonmember volunteers worked on the 2017-18 activities of the League of Women Voters of Portland. They were honored at our May 2018 Convention. We also honored our Volunteer of the Year, Peggy Bengry. See the article about her service here.
voter service volunteers
For the 2018 Primary Election, League volunteers produced and distributed our nonpartisan Multnomah County Voters’ Guide. They composed substantive questions for the candidates and researched the ballot measure on the Children’s Levy; they entered contact information for candidates on Vote411.org and invited the candidates to participate; they edited and proofread the drafts, and carried bundles of the printed guides to libraries and other places where voters could find them. Other volunteers organized our forums, invited and hosted the candidates, arranged for video recordings, moderated the forums and timed the candidates’ statements to make sure all candidates had an equal chance to state their positions. Another group of volunteers organized and conducted the interviews for our Video Voters’ Guide.
Civic Education volunteers
Throughout the year, volunteers also organized and moderated our monthly civic education panel discussions. (These panel discussions were recorded and may be viewed on our YouTube channel as the complete programs or as shorter Highlights.) Volunteers also began a two-year re-study of Portland’s City Government. Other members participated in small “unit” discussion groups and started interest groups to learn about civic issues and help us plan for future civic education events, as well as for advocacy.
Action Committee volunteers studied the issues that will affect the future of our city, county, and Metro area, and, when the Portland City Council debated issues related to our positions on city planning, government transparency, police accountability and water quality, our Advocacy Team sent letters and testified before the Council.
Volunteer hours are worth a lot!
Some volunteers contribute five or ten hours of their time a year; others contribute 250 to 1,500 hours a year. All together our volunteers donated at least 8,000 hours of their time in the past year. Their time (at $24.14/hour) was worth more than $193,000!
We are grateful to all our dedicated, hard-working and talented volunteers! If YOU would like to help us in the year ahead, when we will be preparing information for the 2018 General Election and for our 2018-19 Civic Education Panel Discussions, please click here.
The League of Women Voters of Portland is a low-budget nonpartisan volunteer organization. We depend heavily on donations from individuals, businesses and foundations to support the work of our Education Fund, which is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization. We also need support for member services and for the advocacy work of our 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization.
What you can do
Please consider clicking on the donate buttons to help us pay for the voter services we provide for every election and for our monthly civic education panel discussions. Or as a member, you can volunteer to help with voter services and civic education or to advocate with our Action Team for better government and the rights of the people of Portland and Multnomah County.
Thanks to members, Businesses and foundations for their support
We are grateful to the many League members who donated to our Education Fund in May to help us Meet the Match! We were also helped in 2018 by Portland area businesses: Vernier Software and Technology, MetroEast Community Media, The Neil Kelly Company, and Paloma Clothing. In addition, we recently have received grants from the Carol & Velma Saling Foundation, the Wyss Foundation, the Walsh Foundation, the Rose E. Tucker Charitable Trust, and the Multnomah Bar Foundation to expand our educational work. These donations and grants will help us reach more people throughout the Portland area with our educational services.
Highlights videos are shortened versions of recorded panel discussions about important civic issues. The League presents these panel discussions during many months of the year. The full discussions often last more than an hour. But now you can see a shorter version with the most important points. Highlights videos are typically 20 minutes long.
View the highlights of what was said by clicking on the titles below.
The Board of Directors of the League of Women Voters of Portland is elected by the membership at our annual Local Convention every May. These directors are volunteers and receive no pay. They are also a “working board.” Each board member takes on responsibility for leading (or helping to lead) a League committee and organizing projects.
What does the Board of Directors do?
The LWVPDX Board meets as a group at least ten times during the year and as often as once a month, with additional meetings as needed. In addition to their work as committee chairs and project leaders, board members have responsibility for assuring that the Portland League as a whole is governed according to League Principles and acts in accordance with our Bylaws, Policies and Advocacy Positions. They oversee the fiscal health of the League and participate in helping with League projects beyond the projects their committees undertake.
This short video on Reducing Our Carbon Footprint is one of a series of videos that are excerpts from longer recordings of forums. We take the most interesting statements from the panel discussions.
What you can learn about reducing your carbon footprint
Find out what you, your city and your business can do to protect our planet. How can we cut carbon emissions and limit the harm to our environment, climate and health? Three speakers talk about what the City of Portland, Oregon businesses and individuals are doing now. Then they discuss their visions for the future. There are many exciting ideas about how our lives will change in the next few decades, if we want to reduce the harm caused by carbon emissions.
Watch the best 20 minutes of this discussion by clicking the arrow below.