Mayor’s Corner: July 2022

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Jason Snider, Mayor's Corner
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July 1st marks the beginning of a new fiscal year for the City of Tigard. Our city leadership has worked thoughtfully and cooperatively over the last several months to create a budget for this new fiscal year that reflects our shared community values.

Our budget plan – Tigard Forward – will improve our long-term fiscal health while following through on existing commitments and investing in these four focus areas:

Advance Equity, Inclusion, Anti-Racism:

  • Hire a diversity, equity, and inclusion manager to lead the City’s efforts to dismantle institutional racism
  • Provide a Wi-Fi hotspot and laptop check-out for library patrons to promote digital equity.
  • Make significant park investments in historically underserved areas.

Improve Community Safety:

  • Offer officer training in advanced crisis intervention and de-escalation to address increased occurrences of mental health crises and the frequency of use of force.
  • Work with Washington County to improve our response to mental health-related cases.
  • Hire a cybersecurity analyst and replace network firewalls to protect our network infrastructure.

Improve Mobility, Connectivity, and Resiliency:

  • Invest in bike/pedestrian paths and safe routes to school.
  • Complete construction and open Phase I of Universal Plaza.
  • Complete Phase II construction of Main Street Green Street.
  • Install electric chargers for ten city fleet vehicles.

Responding to the Impacts of COVID-19:

  • Continue to distribute federal COVID aid to community members and small businesses.
  • Make strategic community investments to address houselessness, affordable housing, and climate action.

We’ve created simple, visually descriptive materials to share budget details in an easy and accessible way. These documents are available on the city’s website. For even more about the budget, I encourage you to listen to the Talking Tigard podcast episode featuring City Manager Steve Rymer and Finance Director Cindy Trimp, who discuss key budget decisions.

When planning and finalizing the budget, we seek to demonstrate our ability to manage your precious taxpayer dollars in a responsible and transparent way. Our success was recently recognized when Standard & Poor’s raised our bond rating to triple-A, the highest possible rating. This updated rating is a testament to the City Council and City leadership’s commitment to maintaining strong financial principles and practices. As a result, we can access capital markets at the lowest borrowing cost, which saves all of our community members money.

I invite your questions about our spending plan for this fiscal year. You can share them at my next Fireside Chat on Thursday, July 14 at 6:30 p.m. Bishop Scheckla Pavilion at Cook Park or connect with me at jason@tigard-or.gov or 503-810-0269.

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