Portland mayor exploring budget cuts to free up funds for housin - KPTV - FOX 12

Portland mayor exploring budget cuts to free up funds for housing crisis

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Portland Mayor Charlie Hales announced Tuesday a proposal to help improve Portland’s growing housing issues, but it could come at the expense of other city services.

Mayor Hales officially declared a housing state of emergency in Portland and promised $20 million to help with the housing efforts.

That money would have to come out of the city budget, meaning several departments could see some major cuts.

Although the proposals are in the preliminary stages, Mayor Hales is asking each city department to show him what cutting five percent of their budget would look like.

Portland city officials said the five percent reduction will allow more money to go towards the homeless crisis.  

City officials said this could mean different things for different departments.

Many police officers and firefighters could lose their jobs.

The Portland Police Bureau said it could possibly cut 88 positions, including positions in the the school resource officer program and the traffic division.

Portland Fire & Rescue said it is proposing shutting down two stations. That is more than 50 jobs.

The proposal is only in its early stages and public meetings on the proposed budget cuts will be held in April. 

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