Decision Making Process

How Urban and Rural Reserves will be designated


Urban and rural reserves will be formally designated through agreements between Metro and Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties. One representative of Metro and each of the three counties are the only voting members of the Reserves Steering Committee. These four representatives, who co-chair the Reserves Steering Committee, are:

Decisions will be reached using the following process:

 Reserves Steering Committee Diagram

  • Four votes (Metro and counties); all decisions unanimous
  • Decisions that require governing body approval are tentative such as intergovernmental agreements (IGAs)
  • Charge is limited to creating IGA on urban and rural reserves
  • Other steering committee members serve in non-voting advisory positions
  • Steering committee members serve as the representative of an entity or community and are expected to coordinate with members of that entity or community
  • Meetings will be facilitated by an independent chair or facilitator

Metro Reserve Steering Committee

The Reserves Steering Committee, co-led by Metro and Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties, will oversee the study of potential urban and rural reserves and advise the Metro Council and county commissions on the formal designations of these areas.

To assist with the study and development of urban and rural reserves, a Reserves Steering Committee has been formed, consisting of officials from local cities, counties and Metro, as well as representatives of various business sectors, the agricultural community, the environmental conservation community, and social and economic equity organizations.

The steering committee also has seats for representatives from the two largest cites in each county, as well as one seat apiece representing the smaller cities of each county. There is also one representative for the neighboring cities outside Metro's urban growth boundary.

Description of planning process:

Joint / collaborative process with Metro

Under state rules, the Portland Metro area Urban Growth Boundary is managed by Metro and rural lands outside of this UGB are managed by the county within which those lands are located. In order to effectively coordinate the process of identifying priorities for Urban Reserves and Rural Reserves and to resolve issues between those priorities, Metro and the three counties (Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington) have developed a joint / collaborative planning process. This planning process includes a regionally coordinated public involvement plan. This “Coordinated Public Involvement Plan” that incorporates a set of “Principles of Public Involvement” that will be utilized to guide the public interface with this regional planning project.

Managed by Regional Reserve Steering Committee and local Coordinating Committees

A regional Reserves Steering Committee will be formalizing recommendations to the Metro Council and County Commissions on Urban and Rural Reserves. In turn, local Coordinating Committees in each county will review local proposals and related issues and forward recommendations to the Reserves Steering Committee. Both the Reserves Steering Committee and County Coordinating Committees will hold regular public meetings throughout the planning process. Schedules for these meetings will be posted on both Metro and County Web sites.

Planning Process:

Washington County planning staff will manage the local planning tasks related to the creation of Rural and Urban Reserves in Washington County and will coordinate all products being developed with the Washington County Planning Directors.

The Washington County Planning Directors have agreed to provide technical review and support and to coordinate the policy level aspects of the project with their respective local elected officials.

A Policy Group (The Washington County Reserves Coordinating Committee - RCC) comprised of local elected officials in Washington County has been formed and will provide project oversight and policy review and decisions throughout the project. Representatives from service districts and the Washington County Farm Bureau also are part of the RCC. This group will hold regular public meetings and will provide opportunities for public input on key elements of the project. The RCC will hold public hearings on final recommendations for Rural and Urban Reserves in Washington County.

Project Timing – Key Milestones / Products:

Metro and the three counties are cooperating and fully coordinating all phases of this project region-wide. Please refer to the Project Timeline.