Two decades of voter investments have allowed Metro – on behalf of the public – to protect clean water, restore fish and wildlife habitat and provide opportunities to experience nature close to home.
Bond measures: By approving bond measures in 1995, 2006 and 2019, voters asked Metro to acquire land, award community nature grants for capital improvements and provide money to local parks providers. As a result, Metro has protected more than 13,000 acres. Hundreds of community nature projects have also received a boost through grants and allocations to local cities, counties and park providers.
In November 2019, 67% of voters across greater Portland approved a renewal of the 2006 bond. The bond, which will raise $475 million, supports six program areas: land purchase and restoration, improvements at Metro parks, Nature in Neighborhoods capital grants, “local share” money to support local park providers, walking and biking trails, and complex community projects.
The 1995 bond measure raised $136 million. The 2006 bond measure raised $227 million.
Local-option levies: In May 2013, voters across greater Portland approved a five-year levy to help care for 17,000 acres of regional parks, trails and natural areas. The levy raises about $10 million per year. The money supports restoration and maintenance, access to nature, park improvements, nature education, volunteer programs and community nature grants.
In November 2016, more than 74 percent of voters across greater Portland approved a five-year renewal of the levy, extending the end date of funding to June 2023. The levy renewal will raise about $16 million a year.
Historic cemeteries: Metro’s historic cemeteries are supported with money from the general fund only, though the program is housed in the Parks and Nature Department.