July 9, 2013

The project to replace the Multnomah County Courthouse took a significant step forward in the recently concluded session of the Oregon Legislature.

The courthouse project got a $15 million bipartisan commitment from the Legislature as part of a larger capital construction funding package for statewide needs in Senate Bill 5506.

The Legislature’s bipartisan support for this project demonstrates how much momentum has been achieved toward replacing the 100-year-old courthouse, which is functionally obsolete and structurally dangerous.

The building is seismically unsafe and its outdated design often requires court personnel, victims, witnesses and the general public—including visiting schoolchildren—to share public pathways with criminal defendants.

Multnomah County officials praised the Legislature for approving the funding on July 8, and said the milestone marks a great partnership with the state.

"This new partnership with the state of Oregon means the long-overdue courthouse replacement project will be able to move forward after 40 years of studies and good intentions,’’ said Commissioner Deborah Kafoury.

“What's clear now, “ Kafoury said, “is that we're on the path towards building a safe and functional courthouse for the more than 1,500 people who use the courthouse every day.”

“Legislative support adds significantly to the momentum for a new courthouse,” said Commissioner Judy Shiprack. “I appreciate the partnership of the Legislature and the assistance of the governor -- together, we will continue to move this important project forward.”