Three times in two decades, Metro voters have approved measures to acquire and NOW maintain thousands of acres of natural areas throughout the tri-county region!
On May 21st, 2013 residents voted YES on the five-year local option levy to restore the region's natural areas, improve water quality and fish habitat, maintain parks, and provide people with more opportunities to experience nature. The levy of 9.6 cents per $1,000 of assessed value will cost the owner of a home with an assessed value of $200,000 about $20 a year and would raise approximately $10 million annually.
Twice before, voters have approved bond measures to purchase and protect some of the region's most significant undeveloped land. However, money approved by the region's voters for acquisition could not be used for operating expenses.
Because of the voter-approved bond measures, today Metro owns or manages more than 16,000 acres, including more than 100 miles of stream and river frontage, wetlands, prairies, forests and other sites. Metro now is the largest owner of public parks and natural area lands in the Portland metropolitan region.
While some areas are not formally open to visitors, Metro's parks and natural areas are visited by more than 1.3 million people each year for outdoor experiences like hiking, walking, picnicking, weddings and special events.
Measure 26-152 will pay for projects that:
- improve and protect water quality for salmon and native fish
- remove invasive weeds that threaten the health of our natural areas
- replace aging restrooms, picnic shelters, play areas and other facilities at existing parks
- expand opportunities for people to learn about nature
- provide more opportunities to use Metro parks and natural areas