Public Notice: Ballot Title Borrowing Funds for Water System Improvements on the November 2, 2021 Ballot

Notice of Ballot Title Referral by City Commission of the City of Oregon City

Notice is hereby given that the City Recorder of Oregon City has received a proposal from the City Commission of Oregon City to seek voter approval to borrow funds for water system improvements, as set by Section 47 and Section 58 of the Oregon City Charter. The City Recorder has determined that the proposal contains only one subject, as required by section 1(2)(d), Article IV of the Oregon Constitution.

Notice is further given that the Oregon City Commission has submitted the following ballot title for the proposal:

Ballot Title

Caption: Authorizes the City to Borrow Funds for Water System Improvements.

Question: Shall Oregon City be authorized to borrow up to $38 million for water system improvements?

Summary: Oregon City's water system needs significant improvements, demonstrated by its water master plan. The plan identifies projects to strengthen the water system and improve its ability to recover from wildfire, major storms, and drought while providing safe, reliable water year-round.

The City seeks a balanced approach to fully fund the water system improvements minimizing rate increases above the 3% Charter limit by borrowing money. This measure would authorize Oregon City to borrow funds to support water system improvements. The City expects to repay the borrowed money over 20 to 30 years with water system revenues and may pledge its full faith and credit to improve the terms. This measure will not result in additional property taxes.

Voter authorization to borrow money will:

  • Enable the City to apply for low interest federal and state loans
  • Provide a large sum of money at one time, allowing projects to be completed earlier
  • Allow future users to contribute resulting in a smaller annual water rate increase

Notice is further given that any elector of Oregon City who believes the proposed measure contains more than one subject or who believes the ballot title is insufficient, not concise, or unfair may file a petition for judicial review under Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 250.296 with the Clackamas County Circuit Court no later than 5 pm, August 17, 2021, which is 7 business days after this notice. Notification must also be given to the City Elections Officer the same day of filing with the Circuit Court. The Agenda Packet containing the staff report that was approved by the City Commission is available on the City's website or by contacting the City Recorder at 503-496-1505.

Jakob Wiley,
Oregon City Recorder and Acting Elections Officer

Supporting Documents