Civic Life – How do Neighborhood Associations fit?

The public needs more opportunities to be involved

The League of Women Voters of Portland has sent a letter to Commissioner Eudaly and Director Suk Rhee of the Office of Community and Civic Life. We are asking for more transparency and public involvement in the work of the committee proposing changes to the section of the City Code that governs community involvement and Neighborhood Associations. We believe most Portlanders don’t know about the Code 3.96 Committee’s efforts to change the City Code.  The public should have their say on changes to policies that may affect how the public interacts with our city government and the livability of Portland’s neighborhoods.

You can read the City’s information about the Code Change Committee and its proposal here: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/civic/77951

Our RECOMMENDATIONS

“The League recommends that once the Code 3.96 Committee determines its proposal is ready for public review, it should schedule one or more public forums to address questions and accept comments and suggestions from interested community members.”

Our Questions

“It is hard to tell from the initial code language available on the website what the proposed changes will mean for Neighborhood Associations and other community organizations.”

“How will the public be provided avenues to stay informed and participate in a way that ensures a conduit for public input?”

“We understand the existing contracts district coalitions have with the City may be reconfigured and other entities could be chosen to replace them sometime in the future. If that is the case, will those entities provide services to Neighborhood Associations that are similar to the services provided by the district coalition offices?”

Our Mission: Encourage Public Participation

The League works to inform all people about policies that could affect their lives and to help them have a voice in government decisions.  We believe the Neighborhood Associations have “the potential for serving the public good by providing important opportunities for civic participation and improving neighborhood livability.”  And, “If the current system isn’t working for community members, the League is interested in understanding why and how new systems would be better.”

You can read the whole letter here: LWV Code 3.96 committee 7-19 

League of Women Voters statement on Charlottesville

The League of Women Voters of Portland extends its sympathies to the families and victims of the acts of domestic terrorism that took place in Charlottesville, VA on August 12. The League denounces these violent acts of white supremacy and works with others to advance racial justice. We reaffirm the League’s belief in equal rights for all and support those who speak out against hate and violence.

Below is part of a statement from Chris Carson, president of the LWV of the U.S. The entire statement may be viewed at http://lwv.org/press-releases/lwv-statement-charlottesville

“…while the freedom of speech and the freedom of assembly are some of our most cherished rights and must be protected, those rights do not extend to what we witnessed yesterday. The League of Women Voters stands in solidarity with the victims of violence in Charlottesville and against white supremacism.”