Portland Council OKs $3M emergency COVID-19 measures

Coronavirus

One transfer $3M to an 'incident budget,' the other would help city employees cope

PORTLAND, Ore. (Portland Tribune) — The Portland City Council considered two emergency measures on short notice to respond to the COVID-19 crisis on Wednesday, March 25. 

One transfers $3 million in unallocated general funds reserves to an “incident budget” for the response. The measure does not detail how the funds will be spent, but says they will support “the City’s efforts to promote public health and safety measures for the City’s workforce and community members.”

The measure also authorizes the Portland Housing Bureau to reallocate $1 million in general fund dollars for rental assistance.

This measure passed.

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Another measure would authorize a  Letter of Agree with several unions representing city employees intended to support those now working from home and protecting the health of those still reporting for work. It also increases the flexibility for leave programs.

The unions are: the District Council of Trade Unions, comprised of AFSCME Local 189, IBEW Local 48, Machinists and Aerospace Workers, District Lodge 24 Auto Mechanics, District Lodge 24 Operating Engineers, Local 701 Plumbers, Local 290 Painters and Allied Trades, District Council 5; Laborers’ International Union of North America Local 483; and Professional Technical Employees, Local 17. 

An accompanying financial analysis says there is no fiscal impact.

The additions to the March 25 agenda were announced in regular weekly Tuesday Memo update that was emailed late in the afternoon. Council meetings are currently being conducted remotely without the public being present. Only audio is available through the city’s website. Testimony is encouraged at cctestimony@portlandoregon.gov.

You can find the city’s website at portlandoregon.gov.

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