Multnomah County

Measure No. 26-61

Referred to the People by the Board of County Commissioners as Recommended by the Multnomah County Charter Review Committee.


CAPTION: Multnomah County Official Running For Office Midterm

QUESTION: Shall County elected officials be allowed to run for another elective office in midterm?

SUMMARY: The measure amends the Charter. It allows county elected officials to file for another office without ending their current term of office. The Charter now treats filing as a resignation resulting in ending county elected terms, creating office vacancies and causing more elections to fill offices. The measure takes effect on November 3, 2004.


The county Charter does not allow running for another elective office in midterm. If a county official files for another office, it is the same as a resignation. Only in the last year of the term may the official file for another office. This limits public service in county elected offices, creates office vacancies and results in more elections to fill offices.

The measure amends the Charter. This measure repeals the midterm ban and allows elected officials to file for another office without ending their current term. This measure will reduce the number of elections to fill offices.

The Charter Review Committee recommends this measure.

The measure will take effect November 3, 2004.

Submitted by:
Multnomah Co. Charter Review Committee

No arguments AGAINST this measure were filed

Measure No. 26-61 | Multnomah County

The Charter Review Committee voted in favor of eliminating a Charter provision treating filing for another office by County elected officials in mid-term as a resignation.

This is a Charter provision which actually did break the County, and needs fixing. In March 1998, due to this provision, the County was left with only the Chair and one other Commissioner to conduct County business. The lack of a quorum, where three members need to be present, made it impossible for the County to conduct Board meetings and certain County business.

  • No other county or city government treats filing for another office as a resignation. This puts Multnomah County officeholders – and thus their constituents – at a disadvantage when one runs, for instance, for a regional position like Metro.
  • This provision is also unfair in that it does not apply equally to all County elected officers, depending on the years of their terms. And only in the last year of a term may an official file for another office without that action being treated as a resignation.

Eliminate a demonstrated problem by voting “yes" on this Measure. As indicated above, the provision it “cures” has caused the County to be sick before, and could again.

Save the County money by reducing the number of elections necessary to fill unnecessary vacancies created by this provision. The current provision limits public service in County elected offices, creates office vacancies, and results in more elections to fill County offices.

The Oregonian on August 25th wrote:

Right now, the charter punishes commissioners who file to run for another office by treating the filing as a resignation. This isn’t a sensible rule. …(I)t cripples the county when several commissioners decide, or are forced, to leave the board all at once. Vote “yes” on Measure 26-61.

The Charter Review Committee requests that you vote yes on Measure 26-61.

(This information furnished by Lynn D. Partin, Charter Review Committee Volunteer PAC)

The printing of this argument does not constitute an endorsement by Multnomah County, nor does the county warrant the accuracy or truth of any statements made in the argument.