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Francesconi announces for Multnomah County chair

Former Portland City Commissioner Jim Francesconi confirmed Sunday that he'll run for Multnomah County chair, and said he intends to formally file papers on Monday, Oct. 14.

"With the federal government in gridlock and the state short on funds, it’s clear that local

government, like Multnomah County, is the key to protecting our quality of life," Francesconi said.

Francesconi, an attorney, serves on the State Board of Higher Education. Before being elected to the council, he was active on the Portland Organizing Project, a church-based social service coalition.

County Commissioner Deborah Kafoury has also said she will run for the position vacated by former Chair Jeff Cogen. Commissioners Loretta Smith and Diane McKeel have also expressed interest in the race.

Francesconi would join two lesser-known candidates in the race who have indicated they don't plan to raise serious money for the campaign.

Steven Reynolds, who lists his occupation as an entrepreneur and former U.S. Army officer, filed to fill out the remainder of Cogen's term that expires next year, as well as the full four-year term after that.

James Rowell, a retiree who worked at the Viewmaster plant in Tigard, filed to fill out the remainder of Cogen's term, but didn't file to run for the subsequent four-year term.

Both men indicated they don't intend to spend more than $750 on the race.