ⓘ H. Russell Albee. Elected mayor on June 2, 1913, Albee was the first mayor to preside over Portlands commission form of government, which had been approved by o ..

                                     

ⓘ H. Russell Albee

Elected mayor on June 2, 1913, Albee was the first mayor to preside over Portlands commission form of government, which had been approved by only a very small fraction more than a majority of city voters on May 3. A recall effort against him and two commissioners in 1914 was unsuccessful. His administration gave attention to controversial matters including riverfront improvement, water meters, municipal garbage collection, vice, public transit rates, and slum housing conditions, but little was accomplished of long-range significance. By the end of his administration, the city had significantly cut back expenditures from the general fund, reducing it by 20 percent from $3.22 million to $2.5 million, even though the population of the city had grown by 5 percent since 1915. Paradoxically, the commission form of government came under fire for alleged waste and inefficiency. Portland remains the only large city in the United States that still has a city commission form of government.