More than 150 people addressed the city council of Portland, Ore., on Wednesday regarding the panel’s plans to slash $18 million more from the city’s police budget, according to a report, Fox News informed.
After an online meeting that lasted more than five hours, council members decided to seek more information from city budget officials and delay their funding decision until next week, OregonLive.com reported.
That means the decision will be made next Thursday – after voters decide Tuesday whether Mayor Ted Wheeler and Commissioner Chloe Eudaly will win new terms.
Eudaly cast the sole “no” vote to adjourn Wednesday’s meeting, with Wheeler and commissioners Amanda Fritz and Dan Ryan all opting not to decide on more than a dozen budget matters, the news outlet reported.
Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty left the meeting early, saying she was “disgusted by the lack of courage” from Wheeler, Fritz and Ryan in choosing to wait until after the election.
Eudaly and Hardesty have been leading the effort to move $18 million from the police department to other various other city programs, OregonLive.com reported.
They have proposed using $7.5 million for food assistance for city residents, $7.5 million for legal expenses for city residents facing evictions, and funding for portable toilets and other services for occupants of tent camps that have been sanctioned by the city.
Wheeler, 58, is seeking his second term after previously serving as a state treasurer and a Multnomah County commissioner. He has drawn frequent criticism from President Trump, among others, for his handling of the frequent riots and vandalism in the city in recent months – in which fatal shootings also have occurred. Wheeler also serves as the city’s police commissioner.
He’s facing a challenge from urban policy consultant Sarah Iannarone, who has referred to herself as an “everyday anti-fascist,” Willamette Week reported.
Eudaly, 50, is a former bookstore owner and renters’ rights advocate who is also seeking a second term. She is involved in a runoff election against challenger Mingus Mapps, an activist who has helped manage the city’s Neighborhood Association and Crime Prevention Program, according to his campaign website.