Thank you, Portlanders, for re-electing me to the Portland City Council. I won by over 46,000 votes! I am very happy to be given the opportunity to continue to be Your Voice in City Hall.
I am no longer accepting donations, and I closed my campaign committee. Many thanks to Campaign Treasurer Terri Preeg Riggsby for all her diligent work on finances.
If you appreciate what I do and want to contribute to another leader who shares my values, please donate to Senator Jeff Merkley.
I will keep my campaign web site on line, so you can check back over the next four years and make sure I do what I said I would do..... just as I did for my first term on the Council. Thank you to all volunteers, staff, and supporters who helped win this historic victory.
The following is the text of my web site before the polls closed:
Amanda is endorsed by the Oregonian, Willamette Week, Mercury, Skanner, and Observer, by six labor unions, Commissioners Nick Fish and Dan Saltzman (the two members of the Portland City Council continuing to serve in 2013), Multnomah County Chair Jeff Cogen, and hundreds of Portlanders. People who work with Amanda, like working with Amanda!
Please read the Oregonian's October endorsement for independent comments on why voting to re-elect Amanda Fritz is the right choice for Portland on November 6.
Willamette Week reconsidered their endorsement since the primary, and on 10/17/12 switched to supporting Amanda, noting, "Fritz has also proven to be a true citizen’s representative on a Council buffeted by conflicting agendas. She remains an important, independent voice, unafraid to challenge the status quo.....Her penny-pinching appears more admirable as Portland’s budget gets closer to being swallowed by urban renewal areas and fire and police pensions......Fritz made a compelling case that her background as a psychiatric nurse is an important tool in helping cops change their approach to public safety."
Portland was in the Top Ten cities for job growth in 2011. I will continue to work hard to provide services that support more well-paying jobs in our city.
I am running for a second term based on my record of proven leadership and results, doing what I said I would do when Portlanders elected me in 2008 -- prioritizing basic services and spending taxpayers' money wisely. I have been the voice of fiscal responsibility, equity, community involvement, and common sense for the past four years. I am happy that I won the most votes in the May primary, despite being outspent by over $100,000. I ask for your support in the days remaining, and for your vote by November 6.
I will continue successful strategies that have helped us start climbing out of the recession. Commissioners Nick Fish and Dan Saltzman, the two members of Council continuing in 2013, endorse me for re-election. Together, we will provide the stable, principled core that will help guide the new Mayor in collaborative work that provides basic services and enhances conditions for job creation in Portland. We need Council members who have proven we work together to get things done.
In my second term, I will:
* Improve outcomes for people experiencing mental illnesses, by funding and coordination of crisis care and reducing interactions between police and people in mental health crisis. With my 26 years' experience in mental health nursing, followed with four years in charge of 9-1-1, I am uniquely qualified to continue and complete this crucial work.
* Achieve results in improved opportunities and outcomes for people of color and people with disabilities, through the actions of the Office of Equity and Human Rights.
* Reduce Water Bureau rate increases.
* Work on cell towers, air quality, zoning codes and maps, and engaging Portlanders in making Superfund choices.
* Press the Legislature to provide adequate school funding, a problem state legislators have failed to solve over the past 10+ years.
* Keep using common sense and exercising fiscal responsibility.
I ask for your support and assistance winning re-election to the Portland City Council on November 6, so that I can continue to be a forceful and effective advocate for spending taxpayers' money more wisely. I am proud of the achievements and results I've accomplished as your City Commissioner since January 2009, despite the challenges of the recession. With the active help of the community, in just three years I have made a real difference for Portland taxpayers and ratepayers.
In 2009, I saved ratepayers a projected total of $500 million by persuading the Council to pursue a less expensive compliance mechanism if the City is required to treat Bull Run drinking water. I partnered with neighborhood and business advocates to get this done. The result was a unanimous vote reversing the Water Bureau's previous plan. That vote decreased the rate increase in 2010 by over 6%, saving ratepayers $6 million in 2010-11, and by 6% again in 2011-12 compared with the Water Bureau's previous plan. (See Politifact article and discussion, here). Water rate increases are still too high. In the current budget, I secured another 5-0 Council vote to avoid paying any costs in this year's budget related to covered storage for Bull Run water, saving ratepayers more money in the 2012-13 rates. If re-elected, I will continue to be the ratepayers' champion on the Council.
I work hard for people in every part of Portland. In my first three years, I attended 971 community events, and read and responded personally to over 20,000 emails. Since embarking on the path of public service, I have volunteered in hands-on projects in 90 of Portland's 95 neighborhoods.
I listen to neighbors and business leaders, and collaborate with all to solve problems and empower citizens.
And together, Portlanders and I have achieved results.
I was the leader in replacing Portland's out-of-date 9-1-1 computer system, whose limitations would soon have put public safety at risk. Working with Commissioner Randy Leonard, multiple city and county agencies, police and fire services, and the public, my excellent staff in the Bureau of Emergency Communications made necessary initial adjustments, and now the system works better than ever. The old computer died two months after the switch. We got the job done on time, on budget, and it works. Sheriff Dan Staton's endorsement of my re-election is a testament to that success.
The effects of the recession have been deep and long lasting. As a city, state, and nation, we are still struggling together to revive a vibrant economy. In these hard times, instead of improving services in 2009 and 2010, we had to cut the City budget significantly. I supported deep spending cuts in both years, and the City of Portland's budget in 2011 was much more robust than the State's. In part because of actions by your City Council, the number of jobs in Multnomah County grew by 6,800 in 2011, despite public sector job cuts of 1,700. And still I know we must do more, because so many Portlanders are still suffering unemployment and underemployment, and this recession affects everyone. We are not out of it yet, and we face more cuts to City services in 2012-13. I will continue to work to attract and retain jobs in both small businesses and large corporations, support schools, and maintain basic services, as I have throughout my first term.
I push the Council and City processes to operate more efficiently, and I pursue equity and justice in every decision. I ask the questions Portlanders want answered: "What is the true cost of this project? Who is going to pay for it, who benefits, and is that fair?". I watch over the details to save taxpayers' money. And I ask if it's a truly important priority now, relative to the other urgent competing needs we must also consider. Whenever feasible, I have done so in a way that fosters partnerships and public participation, and helps further the understanding that we are all in this community together. I coordinated the Council's consensus and 5-0 votes on the Tree Protection policy, the West Hayden Island resolution setting a process to decide whether to develop a Port facility there, and funding the right budget for inclusive community involvement all three years. I secured funding for projects at Roosevelt and Parkrose High Schools, and I was East Portland's Gateway Area Business Association Citizen of the Year in 2011, selected by the Superintendents of Parkrose, David Douglas, and Portland Adventist schools.
The most important priorities for Portland haven't changed since you elected me three years ago. You and I still want taxpayers money to be spent wisely paying for basic services; well-paying jobs for more Portlanders; great schools; and citizens' voices heard and respected.
My positions and history on many current issues are posted on the About Amanda page of this web site. For those who vote based on a candidate's flexibility and versatility, see this video of my performance with Portland megastar Storm Large at Candidates Gone Wild.
Please participate in the campaign to re-elect me, to continue this work. Talk to your friends and neighbors, and ask them to drop off their ballot with my bubble marked. If you are able to give money, I will be grateful if you can contribute a donation of up to $250 per person for the General Election. Even $5 helps. I am not taking larger contributions than $250 ($500 per couple), and I am not accepting any money from corporations, groups, or other entities that aren't individual people. I want Portlanders to continue to know that I act and vote based on values, facts, and the needs of the people of Portland, rather than influence by affluent campaign donors.
Significant changes often take time and principled, collaborative partnerships to accomplish. Let's continue to work together to deal with the problems that affect citizens' everyday lives.