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Out-of-state corporations are heavily spending to fight ballot questions in Portland

Netherlands Uber
Nam Y. Huh
/
AP file
In this May 15, 2020 file photo, an Uber sign is displayed inside a car in Chicago. Uber is among the out-of-state corporations spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to try to defeat local ballot questions in Portland.

Large, out-of-state corporations are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to try to defeat local ballot questions in Portland.

According to campaign reports filed with the city last week, Uber and DoorDash each donated more than $160,000 last month to the ballot question committee Restaurant Industry United. The group is fighting a local referendum question to boost the minimum wage in the city to $18 an hour by 2025, which would also apply to tipped workers.

Both companies have already spent over $240,000 against the city's ballot questions. Enough is Enough, a committee fighting all 13 questions on the local ballot, has also received $40,000 from Airbnb and $100,000 from the National Association of Realtors.

In total, the two campaigns have received more than $1 million so far, dwarfing donations to groups advocating for the ballot questions.

The Maine Democratic Socialists of America's Campaign for a Livable Portland, which introduced the referendums on short-term rentals, tenant protection and minimum wage, has raised about $21,000 so far. And the group One Fair Wage Portland, which supports the minimum wage question, has raised $50,000 — all from the national One Fair Wage organization.