PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A Multnomah County judge has ruled that a sweeping proposal to change the form of government and election system in Portland should advance to November’s ballot, rejecting a legal challenge from a city business organization.
The Portland Business Alliance filed a lawsuit in July saying the proposal approved by the city’s Charter Commission violated the Oregon Constitution’s requirement that ballot measures address only a single subject, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported.
Circuit Judge Stephen Bushong disagreed in his Monday ruling, saying a unifying principle — reforming the structure and operation of city government — logically connects all provisions in the measure.
Politicians, business leaders and civic activists have called for reshaping Portland’s form of government, which they say hampers the city’s ability to respond to challenges it faces.
Some of that broad consensus dissipated after the 20-member commission, appointed by the City Council and designed to prioritize the views of racial and ethnic minorities, finalized its reform package in June.
The Charter Commission released a statement on the decision.
“We appreciate the court’s thoughtful decision. Today’s ruling gives Portland voters a voice in the future of their city, honoring the time and energy of 20 Charter Commissioners and thousands of community members who developed this proposal.”
KOIN 6 News contributed to this story.