Skip to Main Content View Text-Only

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

1221 SW 4th Ave, Suite 110, Portland, OR 97204

Pricing for Equitable Mobility Task Force

Deadline for Applicants: October 9, 2019

Staff Liaison: Marianna Lomanto, marianna.lomanto@portlandoregon.gov or 503.823.7041

 Purpose and values

The Pricing for Equitable Mobility Community Task Force will inform the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) and Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) as they consider how new pricing strategies could potentially be used to improve mobility, address the climate crisis and advance equity for people historically underserved by the transportation system in Portland, including, but not limited to, low-income Portlanders and communities of color.

Pricing strategies to be considered by the Task Force may include, but are not limited to: parking pricing, area and time-based fees, fleet charges, road user charges, cordons, freeway pricing and more.  Specifically, the Task Force will develop recommendations for City staff and City Council on whether to implement new pricing strategies, the design of potential pricing strategies and priorities for reinvesting any pricing revenue in transportation-related projects, programs, and services that serve historically underserved communities and increase the equity of our system.

The City of Portland is committed to increasing diversity, advancing equity and fostering inclusion in everything that we do. Right now, our transportation system isn’t equitable. Historically underrepresented communities, including low-income people of color and people with disabilities, face barriers that impact their mobility and access and a transportation funding system based on regressive gas taxes. Over time, these burdens and associated costs have unfairly impacted specific populations. Transportation equity means recognizing the harmful legacy of past decisions and moving decisively now to address these harms. Concretely, this means ensuring that communities of color and people with limited mobility, previously excluded from the decision-making process, have a prominent seat at the table and are centered in policy, investments, services, and programs. The Pricing for Equitable Mobility Community Task Force will lead with equity and center transportation justice values throughout its work.

 Background: Why pricing for equitable mobility?

Portland’s population is growing, with 500,000 new residents expected to live in the area by 2040. As our city grows, our streets have become significantly more congested.   Congestion comes with high costs to our social and economic vitality. Congestion negatively impacts our economy, air quality, and health and significantly contributes to our climate crisis. The transportation sector accounts for approximately 40% of carbon emissions in Oregon and Portland is already experiencing the impacts of climate change with record setting heat, flooding, wildfires and other extreme weather events.  Low-income populations and communities of color are more likely to be impacted by extreme weather events, are more likely to live in areas with less greenspace and are more vulnerable to heat-related and respiratory illnesses.  Portland’s low-income residents and people of color also suffer disproportionate costs of congestion because of longer commutes and lower access to privately-owned vehicles. 

We have limited road space in the city, and we must use our existing space as efficiently as possible to help keep people moving and reduce congestion as Portland grows. The City is taking steps to do just that: we’re building multimodal infrastructure that helps people get around in a variety of ways, such as new sidewalks, bus lanes, bike lanes and more; we provide information and incentives to help Portlanders understand all of the transportation options they have; we also think beyond transportation, planning for new housing, jobs and commercial development where good transportation access already exists.  Our regional transportation partners are also preparing for the future with similar projects and programs.  Yet, despite billions of dollars of planned regional transportation investments, forecasts show that these current strategies will not do enough to accommodate growth and address the current inequities of our transportation system.  Regional modeling shows that by 2027, almost one third of the region’s roads will be congested or severely congested.   We need new ideas to help people and goods get where they need to go more reliably, sustainably, and equitably.  

Cities around the world have demonstrated that pricing strategies can help reduce single-occupancy vehicle trips and support more efficient, sustainable and equitable transportation modes. This is why City Council has directed PBOT and BPS to explore how pricing strategies could be used in Portland to advance our values. 

Overview: Pricing for Equitable Mobility Community Task Force

Our research to date shows that pricing strategies can directly benefit lower-income individuals and communities of color if they are designed to advance equity and address local context. The Pricing for Equitable Mobility Task Force will learn about and prepare recommendations to the City of Portland around how and whether the City should consider using pricing strategies to advance our equity and climate goals.

Specifically, the Task Force will advise on the potential for using tactical pricing policies on city streets and infrastructure to advance key strategic goals.  The Task Force will also help to inform the City’s participation in ODOT’s separate Portland Metro Area Value Pricing project and Metro’s technical regional pricing study and analysis.

The Task Force will meet monthly over an 18-month period between 2019-2021. Throughout this time, the Task Force will develop and deliver recommendations to PBOT and BPS around the topics discussed during Task Force meetings. These recommendations will reflect the diversity of opinions on the Task Force. Task Force recommendations will inform any staff proposals to City Council related to pricing and will be shared transparently with the public and City Council in addition to any staff presentations.  

Total number of advisory seats: up to 20

Number of seats available: up to 20

Who can join

To be eligible for the advisory committee, members must live, play, worship, go to school, work or do business in the City of Portland.

What We Look For

We want people from every part of Portland here to share their voice on this committee, especially people who have not been involved before. If you want to serve your community and to help the government make better choices, then we want to see your application.

The attributes listed below are what will guide our selection process. It is helpful if you are specific in your answers. We do not expect you to be or have everything listed.

  • You have the capacity to engage in this process over the 18-month period, including attending most of the meetings and participating fully in the discussions
  • You are interested in sharing your perspective as well as respectfully learning and listening to other perspectives
  • You have the ability to critically evaluate technical information
  • You are creative and dynamic problem solver
  • You have experience, skills, knowledge or perspective of impacts of the transportation system on:

    • communities of color
    • low-income communities
    • persons with disabilities
    • multilingual communities
    • or other groups historically underserved by the transportation system.
  • You are committed to improving outcomes for those who have been historically underserved by the transportation system in Portland, including, but not limited to, low-income individuals and communities of color
  • You are committed to identifying strategies that help reduce the climate impact of our transportation system
  • You are able to draw the connections between environmental issues and social justice issues
  • You have experience, skills, knowledge or perspective related to:

    • transportation policy
    • business transportation needs
    • a variety of transportation modes (transit, pedestrian, bicycling, freight)
    • disability rights
    • transportation safety
    • youth transportation experience
    • climate change and climate justice
    • environmental justice
    • neighborhood transportation needs
    • workforce development
    • Pricing policies
    • academia/major institutions
    • data analysis and quantitative methods

Time Commitment

  • Monthly two-hour meetings for approximately 18 months, beginning in October 2019. Task Force members will be asked to serve for the entire duration of the project.

    • We hope to convene the first meeting the week of October 28th.
  • Meetings will take place on weekday evenings at the Sixth + Main Building, 1050 SW 6th Ave, Portland OR 97204
  • Members are expected to prepare for meetings on their own time. Staff will aim to distribute meeting materials one week in advance, but supplemental materials may be sent with minimal time to review, possibly as few as forty-eight hours (or two days) in advance.

Volunteer Ethics

People who join this committee will become what we call “Public Officials,” which means that while you serve you must behave fair and ethically. We will provide training on this once you are accepted. Part of following Public Officials Ethics laws means you must tell the group when you or a relative may financially benefit (or avoid fees) by your recommendations. This is called a “Conflict of Interest.” If you tell us about potential Conflicts of Interest that does not mean you cannot serve, in fact, many committees have potential members with Conflicts of Interest. We appreciate your ethical inclusion of possible Conflicts of Interest on the form included in the application.

How to Apply

Applications are due by 5pm on October 9, 2019.

Application: https://bit.ly/2m1RZzh

Applications will be reviewed beginning October 10, 2019.

Online submission is the preferred, fastest method to get the application into the hands of the selection committee. We suggest you pre-write and save your answers in a separate document, so you have your own copy, and to prevent loss of your work from internet disruptions. You may request to submit a Word version of the application. Email AdvisoryBodies@portlandoregon.gov to request a Word version.

To talk with someone about this opportunity or to receive assistance completing the application, please contact the advisory body staff liaison at marianna.lomanto@portlandoregon.gov or 503.823.7041.

Voluntary & Confidential Demographic Information

The City is committed to diversity, inclusion, and equity. Completing the demographic information on the application is voluntary, but we encourage you to provide that information.  The City uses this information to help ensure that advisory body appointments represent a broad cross-section of community. Your information will not be used during the recruitment nor the selection process. State and federal law prohibit use of this information to discriminate against you. Questions about this may be sent to AdvisoryBodies@Portlandoregon.gov

General Questions

For general questions about the Advisory Bodies program, the volunteer recruitment process, or other upcoming advisory body opportunities please email AdvisoryBodies@Portlandoregon.gov.

We Encourage You to Apply

We welcome you to browse our website to learn more about the Pricing for Equitable Mobility project.

Do you have questions or need more information? Contact Marianna Lomanto, PBOT, at marianna.lomanto@portlandoregon.gov or 503.823.7041.