Oregon Public Broadcasting

Portland-area voters endorsed a natural spaces levy backed by the Metro regional government Tuesday.

The measure appeared to be passing by with 54 percent of the vote, mostly on the strength of "yes" votes in Multnomah County. The vote in Clackamas and Washington County was close, but trending toward "no."


Metro Councilor Sam Chase says the parks levy will provide improvements and operating money for the whole region.

Chase said, "I see this as a sign that Metro is really in touch with the voters, and the voters have said 'yes, we want you to go out and do those open space bonds.' And then they said 'we really like the job you've done.' And they want us to take the next step and restore and improve these areas."

Metro won voter approval of bond measures to acquire open space twice in the last 18 years. The five-year levy that voters approved Tuesday night will allow Metro to do restoration and maintenance work across Metro's 16-thousand acres of natural space.

The measure had no organized opposition, though a group of regional mayors had recommended Metro postpone the levy election.

This story originally appeared on Oregon Public Broadcasting.