Officials from Oregon’s 241 cities have renewed their call for direct state aid, based on population, as the best way for Oregon to reduce the number of unhoused people and to provide more shelter and services.

Their plan, which they unveiled last fall and restated Wednesday, Jan. 25, calls for an annual allocation of $40 per resident — with a minimum of $50,000 per city — plus about $150 million for one-time construction costs associated with shelters. Based on a 2022 population count by Portland State University, the annual request for state aid amounts to $125 million in each of the next two years.


“When I decided to pursue reporting as a career five decades ago, I did so while living, learning and working in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. But aside from the fact that most young reporters do not get their start in those cities — at least back then — I felt something was missing. That was a more intimate connection with readers and audiences that cannot be acquired from working in large metro areas. So I’ve spent my entire reporting career with news organizations in smaller cities. “Pamplin Media Group is that rarity that combines local journalism in two dozen communities with the reach of a larger organization in a mid-sized metro area. Yes, I report on Oregon government and politics, but I do it with a sense of the readers living and working in our communities.”

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