Milwaukie prepares for light rail cuts

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Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Milwaukie will consider service cuts and higher taxes as possible solutions to pay for its financial obligation to TriMet for light rail construction.

In 2008, city officials signed on to paying TriMet $5 million for the light-rail line under construction. The embattled transit agency promised to open the line in September 2015 from Portland through Milwaukie and to Oak Grove. TriMet renegotiated a payment plan with Milwaukie after it became clear that the city wouldn’t be able to pay within 90 days of the Federal Transit Administration’s 50 percent match to the $1.49 billion total project cost.

City Councilor Dave Hedges saw urgency in the way that Milwaukie’s payments balloon to TriMet, from $192,000 this year to $364,875 as the final installment in 2031. He only voted for the revised agreement with TriMet last June, he reminded other elected officials at the March 21 study session, with the understanding that the city would give citizens the choice between service cuts and paying more taxes.

Read more at The Portland Tribune.

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