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The City of Portland, Oregon

Community & Civic Life

Promote the common good

Main: 503-823-4519

City/County Info: 503-823-4000

TDD: 503-823-6868

1120 SW 5th Ave, Suite 114, Portland, OR 97204

  • Multilingual Community Connections Gathering, April 2019


On July 18, 2018, the City Council passed Resolution 37373 which began the process of updating City Code Chapter 3.96 to define the functions and responsibilities of the Office of Community & Civic Life. The work over this past year by the Portland community, Committee 3.96, and Civic Life has encouraged meaningful discussions around how other bureaus in the City of Portland provide access to civic engagement.

The report, A Code for All Portlanders: Writing Racial, Disability, and Social Justice in the Office of Community and Civic Life, presents Committee 3.96 recommendations, the process for community engagement, and an understanding of how these changes might impact the work of Civic Life. You can read the full report here>>

On November 14, Commissioner Chloe Eudaly presented a Resolution to authorize a three-year extension for Neighborhood District Coalition Office contracts and to convene a multi-bureau work group to conduct a policy review of cross-referenced responsibilities for public involvement (click here to see a timeline of the work proposed in the Resolution). Bureaus within the work group will work together to address their own public involvement practices so all Portlanders can be equitably serviced citywide. The meeting was an opportunity for Portlanders to learn about the work of Committee 3.96.


Portland City Council Hearing - Council Vote

City Code Chapter 3.96



Portland City Council Hearing - Continued Testimony

City Code Chapter 3.96

Thursday, January 9, 2020 2:00pm - 3:00pm

View archive video of meeting


Portland City Council Hearing - Presentation and Public Testimony 

City Code Chapter 3.96

Thursday, November 14, 2019 5:30pm - 8:00pm

Self Enhancement, Inc., 3920 North Kerby Avenue Portland, OR 97227

View archive video of meeting



Frequently Asked Questions - A list of questions and explanations based on ongoing conversations informed by the year-long code change process.


Code Change language recommended by Committee 3.96 - updated 8/30/2019

Draft Administrative Rule 3.96


A Code for All Portlanders: Writing Racial, Disability, and Social Justice into the Office of Community & Civic Life


What is City Code Chapter 3.96?
The current City Code Chapter 3.96 “creates a framework by which the people of the City of Portland may effectively participate in civic affairs and work to improve the livability and character of their Neighborhoods and the City.” This code describes the functions of the Office of Community & Civic Life.

Although broad in scope, this code served to create a formal link only between the City, Neighborhood Associations, and District Coalitions. Since then our office’s programs and relationship with the public have evolved. The 2016 Office of Neighborhood Involvement audit also highlighted the need to update Bureau practices and City Code to ensure Portlanders have equal access to City’s decision-making process. The ways in which Civic Life connects and works with Portlanders have evolved, so must the ways we represent ourselves to our constituents and partners.


How Portlanders participate in revising City Code Chapter 3.96

We recognize that there are multiple ways of engaging with the community — from community surveys to conversations in multiple languages in multicultural settings. We offered these options to provide a platform for Portlanders to author their own experiences in ways that suited their engagement needs. 


Committee 3.96 was formed to recommend changes to Chapter 3.96. The twenty-five members include leaders from Neighborhood Associations and Neighborhood Coalitions, entrepreneurs, faith-based, youth and leaders from disability communities. Meet the committee and read about their Portland moment here>>

Learn more about Committee 3.96 membership and timeline/history.



To serve more communities, we are reaching beyond our existing audiences and connecting with groups and communities whose lived experiences, values, and aspirations have not been reflected in Chapter 3.96. Over-relying on any one tool will not get us the rich cross-section of perspectives we seek. To gain diverse perspectives, we have engaged with the community on concepts critical to our work in the following ways>>



Throughout the code change process, we have heard many stories of people's relationships to civic engagement. Here are but a few stories shared with us.

Jennifer Truc Ly Le, of the Vietnamese community

Andrii Nagornyi, of IRCO's Slavic Leadership Program

Lul Abdulle, Leader of Portland's Somali Women's Association

Taji Chesimet, Director of Youth Educating Police



We are excited about our partnerships with the next generation of Portlanders. Students from two high school journalism programs: Parkrose and David Douglas High School have used the code change project as a topic for learning about City functioning and for storytelling to their peers in the manner and content they choose. View their work >>


Identifying our partners

- Committee Facilitator: Robin Teater Executive Director of Healthy Democracy. Robin will facilitate Committee 3.96 meetings.                        

- Community engagement and feedback: Joy Alise Davis, M.A. founder of Design+Culture Lab.


Additional ways to engage will be announced as they are available.

Resolution for Multi-Bureau Work Group and District Coalition Contract Extension

Resolution for multi-bureau work group and to extend District Coalition Office Contracts

A Code For All Portlanders

A report presenting Committee 3.96 recommendations, the process for community engagement, and an understanding of how these changes might impact the work of Civic Life.

Proposed Code Change language - updated 08.30.2019

Proposed Code Change language - updated 08.30.2019

Draft Administrative Rule 3.96

Draft Administrative Rule 3.96

Recommended Code Change Language

Code Change language, recommended by Committee 3.96 July 18, 2019

Frequently Asked Questions: Code Change

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding City Code Chapter 3.96 Change

Civic Engagement to me is...

Art from Portlanders on civic engagement.

Community Conversations

This article has information about the community conversations.

Subscribe to Civic Life Updates

This page has information to sign up to receive Civic Life updates.

Resolution to convene a Code Change Committee

This resolution authorizes the bureau to convene a code change committee, comprised of members that have a wide range of perspectives, who will report back to Council with recommendations for updating Chapter 3.96.

Support for convening Code Change Committee

Presenters testifying to Portland City Council on July 18, 2018 in support of convening a Code Change Committee