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Would you pay $5 for roads?

by: KOIN NEWS 6 - One person was hit and killed by a driver who fled the scene at SE Powell Boulevard and 124th Avenue, on Feb. 15.At a town hall meeting put on by the Bureau of Transportation, the city of Portland admitted the city needs $75 million for road and street safety improvements — money the city doesn’t have.

One idea floated is to have taxpayers pay part of the bill through a $5-per-month street maintenance fee.

When he was asked if it’s fair to the taxpayer, Mayor Charlie Hales said, “We’re serious about using dollars and being good stewards.”

City Commissioner Steve Novick said he thinks taxpayers will be willing to do this because “safety is a high priority.”

So far this year, three pedestrians were hit and killed on Portland streets. Last year, 11 people people died.

One woman who attended the town hall was Kristi Finney. Her son, Dustin, was struck and killed while riding his bike and she keeps his crumpled bike as a sobering reminder.

“This isn’t just sadness you feel. It’s a grief you never expected,” she told KOIN 6 News.

She said road improvements could have saved her son’s life.

“My son did not have to be killed. It was purely preventable.”