EAST PORTLAND ADVOCATES: IT'S TIME FOR A GAS TAX

East Portland advocates and social justice organizations are lining up to express their support FOR the temporary gas tax on the ballot this May

Longtime East Portland advocates and social justice organizations are lining up to endorse the Fix Our Streets Portland campaign. Community leaders including housing providers ROSE Community Development, the newly formed Transportation Justice Alliance, and the citizen advocates of the East Portland Action Plan (EPAP) endorse a YES vote on Measure 26-173 to address the critical backlog of street safety improvements in East Portland neighborhoods. 

“We are moved to action to endorse the ‘Fix Our Streets Portland’ campaign, because of the urgency dictated by the conditions in East Portland: thirty years of backlogged maintenance on our roads and the glaring lack of safe sidewalks, crosswalks, and streets for East Portland residents” wrote EPAP citizen representatives Arlene Kimura and Linda Bauer in a statement this month. 

The East Portland Action Plan and East Portland Land Use and Transportation Committee represent 150,000 East Portland residents. The Fix Our Streets Portland endorsement represents their first as an entity since adopting their plans for improving East Portland in 2009.

ROSE Community Development, a nonprofit who supplying affordable housing and supporting East Portland’s economic development since 1992, has also endorsed the campaign. Nick Sauvie, Rose CDC’s Executive Director, wrote in a statement that “ROSE works in East Portland neighborhoods, which has poor infrastructure and many unsafe street crossings. This measure will be great for East Portland, and Rose CDC supports a YES vote on Measure 26-173.”

The Transportation Justice Alliance, a newly formed coalition representing social justice and transportation advocate organizations, expressed their support for the gas tax because of the unequal distribution of the impacts of unsafe streets to low income and vulnerable populations. The Transportation Justice Alliance wrote in testimony provided at City Hall this past January, noting that “the projects listed in the proposal steer revenue to the areas of the city that have for too long been neglected and are unsafe.”
 
These endorsements follow last week’s announcement of support from street safety advocates. Groups like Families for Safe Streets, OPAL - Environmental Justice, and Oregon Walks endorsed the Fix Our Streets Portland campaign because investment in East Portland’s dangerous streets represents a necessary first step to help Portland achieve Vision Zero, the goal of eliminating traffic fatalities. 

You can learn more about our campaign on FacebookTwitter, and Instragram, and the letters in support of the Fix Our Streets Portland campaign from the East Portland Action Plan and the Transportation Justice Alliance are available online. 

To see our full list of endorsements, check out www.fixourstreetsportland.com/supporters.