Funding our utilities
February 1, 2016
It’s budget season!
Today I submitted Requested Budgets for the City’s public utilities – the Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) and the Portland Water Bureau (PWB).
Together, these two bureaus manage over $20 billion in infrastructure, employ more than a thousand people, and protect six watersheds.
The requested budgets reflect our priorities for each bureau: clean water in our rivers and our taps, maintaining our aging infrastructure, and ensuring that we are ready for “the Big One.”
For the third year in a row, I directed BES and PWB to keep their combined rate increase below five percent – and once again they have delivered.
Thanks to my two bureau directors, Mike Stuhr and Mike Jordan, the new Portland Utility Board (PUB), the Citizens Utility Board (CUB) and many others for helping to shape the budget proposals.
Over the weekend, The Oregonian ran an op-ed I authored. It answers many questions we are asked during the budget season, and explains why I am so proud to lead these bureaus.
Your voice matters!
Over the next few months, you can attend a Budget Forum or Hearing – find one that is convenient for you. In the meantime, you can comment on the requested budgets, and I hope you do so.
When the BES and the PWB budgets are finalized, you’ll be able to find them on the City Budget Office website.