Please enable images for best viewing experience.

June 2012    

Dear Friends,

BudgetadoptionAs we head into summer, I'd like to recap the county's just-passed budget with you. Preparing our budget each year is a complex task that presents an opportunity for the county to take stock of what we collectively value and to examine where our investments are truly needed.  

This year has been no less complex for Multnomah County. We faced a $3.5 million shortfall in the general fund - our 12th year in a row of budget cuts. But after listening to our community and our organization, I'm happy to announce my fellow board members and I adopted a budget for next year that will reflect the county's commitment to compassion, equity, public safety and sustainability.
We achieved cost savings through efficiencies - for example saving $500,000 by closing a storage warehouse; through eliminating or downgrading the number of management positions  (saving $3.3 million); and through our largest union, AFSCME Local 88 foregoing a cost-of-living increase (saving $6.4 million across all funds). These cost savings allowed us to preserve critical services and make important investments in our county's well-being.

Some highlights of the investments we'll be making with the adopted budget include:   

  • $1.4 million to our nationally-recognized SUN Service System, which supports educational success and family self-sufficiency by connecting youth, families and community, including opening three new SUN Community Schools in east county.
  • $70,000 to the Rosewood Initiative, a community effort to rejuvenate the distressed Rosewood neighborhood located in east county.
  • $47,000 to the expansion of our Gatekeeper Program, a proven 25-year-old program that has trained thousands of  people in our community who deal with older adults or adults with disabilities to identify people in those groups who may need help.
  • $2 million to preserve our mental health crisis system-which provides essential services including our 24-hour call center, our mental health walk-in clinic and our mobile crisis response team. 

For an in-depth outline of my initially proposed executive budget, as well as amendments included in our adopted budget, I encourage you to check out our coverage on the county's website.     

I also encourage you to explore the rest of this newsletter for the latest Multnomah County news and happenings in our community.   
Wishing you a happy and healthy start to your summer.    



 Jeff Cogen signature

County and its largest union recognized by The Oregonian for resource-saving collaboration
Multnomah County Logooregonian1On June 7, The Oregonian's editorial board praised Multnomah County and AFCSME Local 88 for our ongoing shared efforts to save county funds and jobs.


This productive partnership has allowed the county to preserve vital services for this community, thanks to our union allies' willingness to think creatively about how to lower our operating costs by changing how we do business.  


Library levy passes,  new hours begin July 1
100 years for Summer Reading librarylevyThanks to the overwhelming support Multnomah County voters gave our prized library system during the May 15 primary election, we will secure funding to keep our 18 neighborhood branches open, as well as save most library services for the next three years.  

Based on the official results released by our elections division, a whopping 84.5 percent of county residents voted in favor of Measure 26-125, which extends the local option levy at its current rate of 89 cents per 1,000 dollars for three more years.  

And while the outcome marked a huge victory for our library system and our community as a whole, it is not enough to stave off the full impact of the continued decrease in property tax revenue. To help compensate for this decrease, the library will operate under new hours starting July 1. 

The discussion around securing permanent, stable funding for our award-winning library is ongoing and you can continue to show your support by taking advantage of all the great resources, services and events it has to offer. 

Marching into summer with #Team MultCo
TeamMultCoThis parade season at Multnomah County, we'll be celebrating community, warm weather and neighborly fun. You can get in on the festivities too by joining us at: 

The 2012 Pride Parade  

June 17   

Starting at 11:30 a.m. at West Burnside and N.W. Park Ave   


The 2012 Good in the Hood Parade 

June 23  

Starting at 11 a.m. at N.E. 7th and Alberta Street     


Are you organizing an upcoming community event that you would like #Team MultCo to attend? If so, please drop a line to   


CROPS Sprouts Day sows interest in farming for youth
CROPS Sprouts Day participants
Future farmers at the County CROPS farm. 

CROPS2Last month on May 18, our Office of Sustainability hosted its first ever CROPS Sprouts Day. During CROPS
Sprouts Day a small group of children and their moms planted seeds, dug in the compost and learned where food comes from, all while exploring the County CROPS farm in Troutdale

If you've got a little one (ages 4-7) interested in food and farming and want to participate in the next CROPS Sprouts Day, send an email to        
Celebration 100 years of summer reading with Multnomah County Library
Summer Reading 2012SummerReadingFor the past 100 years the Multnomah County library's summer reading program has encouraged boys and girls in our community to stay engaged in reading throughout the summer months. Participating in summer reading programs not only helps children retain the skills they gained during the past school year, but it also helps prepare them for the year ahead. 

The 2012 summer reading program kicks off on June 15 and this year we hope to have 100,000 participants.

To sign up for this free, fun and educational program, county girls and boys ages 18 and under can visit their neighborhood library branch.  
Multnomah County is Oregon's most populous county with about 735,000 residents.  Multnomah County is governed by a Board of four elected Commissioners and one Chair. Multnomah County employees provide citizens a wide range of health and human services, public safety services and other government services.  

Multnomah County values the privacy of personal information and will not sell or otherwise disclose your email address, except as provided under Chapter 192 of the Oregon Revised Statues pertaining to Records; Public Reports and Meetings.

             twittericon2 newsletterssignupicon Facebookicon2
In this issue:
Social Media header

DCHS Button
Public Safety Button2
Library button Land Use and Transportation Button    Diversity and Equity button
SustainabilityMarriage Licenses Button  Elections button
Tax and Assessment Button
Sustainability Film Series
 FilmseriesAs part of our ongoing Sustainability Film Series,
I will be on hand to host the county's free screening of:
Revenge of the
Electric Car

Sunday, July 15
6 p.m.

at McMenamin's
Bagdad Theater,

3702  S.E. Hawthorne Blvd.


Revenge of the Electric Car is a film that tells the story behind the growing international movement toward electric cars. There will be a panel discussion following the screening,


Click here for more information.