Water activists attempting to make city hall more accountable for Portland's water system now have a notion how their proposal could read to voters. The Portland City Attorney's Office yesterday released its crack at ballot language for a "water trust" proposal aimed for the November 2014 election.

It's not an easy task writing these things—city lawyers had try to shrink nine pages of policy [pdf] into less than 200 words. Here's what they came up with.


The summary hits on many of the proposal's big points—the largest being it would allow citizens to sue the city for perceived mismanagement of the water supply—while glossing over others.

Anyone unhappy with the language has until November 22 to challenge it in court. As we've seen from the other water proposal being put before the people, that process can produce big changes.

No word yet on whether the backers of the proposal, a group calling itself the Cascadian Public Trust Initative, will file a challenge.