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THE URBAN FLOOD SAFETY AND WATER QUALITY DISTRICT

MULTNOMAH COUNTY DRAINAGE DISTRICT / WHO WE ARE / URBAN FLOOD SAFETY AND WATER QUALITY DISTRICT

The Urban Flood Safety & Water Quality District (the “UFSWQD”) was created by the Oregon State Legislature during the 2019 legislative session to modernize the management of 27 miles of levee and water conveyance system that run from North Portland through Gresham, Fairview, and Troutdale. This new special district will ultimately replace the four independent Drainage Districts, each of which currently manages parts of the system, and help to establish a safer, more modern and sustainable way to manage flood safety along the Columbia River in the Portland metropolitan region.

DISTRICT PURPOSE

The Urban Flood Safety & Water Quality District continue the work of the existing four Drainage Districts in improving, operating, and maintaining the flood safety infrastructure along the Columbia River and responding to flood emergencies.  The UFSWQD will also build on the work of the four Drainage Districts to include the following additional services.

  • Contributing to improved water quality, fish and wildlife habitat, and landscape resilience in the managed floodplain;
  • Promoting equity and social justice in all aspects of the district’s operations;
  • Preparing for and adapting to the impact of climate change in relation to the managed floodplain; and
  • Providing the public with information regarding the infrastructure and the history of the managed floodplain.
DISTRICT BOUNDARIES

The UFSWQD boundary is tied to the portion of Multnomah County that lies within the Urban Growth Boundary (UGB) as set by Metro, which reflects the area where the greatest economic benefit is experienced due to the activity and infrastructure made possible by the levee and water conveyance systems.

DISTRICT OVERSIGHT

The authorizing legislation calls for two different board configurations at different times—initial and permanent phases. First, an initial 17-member board (“Initial Board”) will be responsible for organizing the district and developing an approved method(s) of operating and capital funding sufficient to assume and manage the duties, assets, and liabilities of the existing four Drainage Districts. Once a sufficient revenue structure is in place and revenue begins to be collected, the Initial Board must call for the selection of the 9-member permanent board (“District Board”) to take over the ongoing oversight of the district.  Once the permanent District Board is established, and other criteria are met, it can initiate the process to dissolve the existing four Drainage Districts.

The Initial Board includes representatives of:

12 governmental entities appointed by their respective governing bodies:

The Cities of Fairview, Gresham, Portland, Troutdale, & Wood Village; Metro Multnomah County, and the Port of Portland; and

The four drainage districts that currently manage the flood safety infrastructure along the Columbia River (PEN1, PEN2, MCDD and SDIC)

5 community representatives appointed by the Governor:

One resident living within the current boundaries of the drainage districts;

One owner or representative of a business within the current boundaries of the drainage districts;

Three nonprofit organization representatives with expertise or interest related to the area within the current boundaries of the drainage districts, of which one must represent an environmental conservation organization; and

One must represent an environmental justice organization

The District Board will include 9 members, each serving four-year terms, including:

5 elected members:

Four individuals who are either residents, business owners, or the designee of a business owner from within the managed floodplain (to be defined by the UFSWQD board);

One resident of urban Multnomah County; and

4 members appointed by the Governor:

One representative of the Port of Portland

One individual with expertise or interest in flood safety

One individual with expertise or interest in environmental conservation

One individual with expertise or interest in environmental justice

ESTIMATED TIMELINE
MEET THE INITIAL DISTRICT BOARD
Erik Molander

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Resident Representative
Bob Sallinger

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Director of Conservation, Portland Audubon
Johnell Bell

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Business Representative
Paul Lumley

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Executive Director, Native American Youth & Family Center (NAYA)
Tony DeFalco

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Executive Director, Verde
Commissioner Lori Stegmann

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Multnomah County
Corky Collier

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Board Member, Multnomah County Drainage District #1
Councilor Shirley Craddick

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Metro
Ann Gravatt

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Federal Affairs & Policy Manager, Port of Portland
Tanney Staffenson

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Board Member, Sandy Drainage Improvement Company
Maryhelen Kincaid

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Board Member, Peninsula Drainage District #2
James Allison

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Board Member, Peninsula Drainage District #1
John Niiyama

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Director of Public Works, City of Wood Village
Steve Fancher

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Director of Public Works, City of Gresham
Councilor Dave Ripma

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City of Troutdale
Councilor Mike Weatherby

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City of Fairview
Michael Jordan

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Director of Bureau of Environmental Services, City of Portland
KEY MATERIALS
BOARD MEETINGS

Learn more about the District at an upcoming meeting. Meetings are generally held at the MCDD office and vary in content each month. All meetings are open to the public, with the exception of Executive Sessions.

AGENDAS & MINUTES

Access or download meeting agendas, minutes, and presentations from any of our past board meetings. Meeting summaries are posted online after they are approved by the board members.

FINANCIAL DOCUMENTS

Access and download the District's annually approved budget and the auditor's report. Each year, the District's budget is accompanied by a narrative that explains key budget items with brief summaries and pie charts.

In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19), MCDD will be in limited operations until further notice. Click here for more information.