Oregon Health & Sciences University is getting a new ally in its request that state legislators use $200 million in taxpayer dollars to fund the expansion of the university's cancer institute: the City of Portland.
Mayor Charlie Hales has asked Portland City Council to add OHSU's request for $200 million to the city's legislative agenda.
"We're going to have an amendment to the state agenda supporting OHSU's capital request," says Martha Pellegrino, director of the city's Office of Government Relations.
The new addition to the city's legislative agenda will be presented to City Council this afternoon.
OHSU is asking legislators to help match Nike founder Phil Knight's $500 million pledge to the university.
School officials want legislators to kick in $200 million for capital projects to be repaid from the state’s general fund. OSHU plans to build two buildings with that money.
Here's the lobbying language the City Council is expected to approve today:
The City of Portland is proud to be home to one of the preeminent cancer research centers in the world, the Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) Knight Cancer Institute. Cancer accounts for nearly one out of every four deaths in the United States, killing almost 1,600 people a day. OHSU is currently undergoing a massive effort to raise $1.2 billion from private and public sources, including $200 million from the State, to construct a new cancer research center and bring some of the brightest minds in medicine to Portland. The City of Portland supports this request for capital construction funding from the State, which will support scientific research, clinical trials and patient care space in two new buildings. The two-year construction phase is projected to result in $892 million in total economic output. Once fully operational, the facilities will support $134 million in annual economic output and help people live longer and healthier lives. It is estimated that the expansion will generate 3,418 jobs during each year of construction and nearly 400 new ongoing positions at OHSU Knight Cancer Institute, including many middle-income jobs.