Deep Questions from the Big Look

The Big Look Task Force has posed a series of questions to different organizations.

While they didn’t specifically invite Portland Transport to submit answers, that never stopped us before. Here’s a subset of the list that readers might want to share their perspective on:

  1. In the absence of the federal funding which underwrote much suburban sewer, water, and road-building in the mid-to-late 20th century, what new mechanisms are needed to provide infrastructure given modern fiscal circumstances?
  2. Are existing finance mechanisms sufficient to support the infrastructure required to support expected growth either within urban growth boundaries or in expansion areas added to urban growth boundaries? Are particular financial tools needed to reflect Oregon’s emphasis on encouraging more growth within urban growth boundaries?
  3. Do existing finance mechanisms place the burden of the fees or taxes appropriately on those that benefit? In instances where fees or taxes are collected in one area to build, operate or maintain facilities for another area, is that transfer transparent and implemented for an intended public policy reason, or merely a hidden cross-subsidy?
  4. Do existing fees and taxes reinforce or undermine adopted land use plans? In particular how do the property tax system post-Measures 5, 47, and 50 influence land use? How do the calculations guiding assessment of SDCs and the expenditure of their proceeds influence the use of land?

Good to know they haven’t oversimplified things :-)

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