PORTLAND -- Mayoral candidates Jefferson Smith and Charlie Hales faced off at the City Club of Portland Friday in one of the last debates before the Nov. 6 general election.

In the event moderated by KGW's Tracy Barry, each candidate spoke about why he had the best vision for Portland's future.

The hour-long debate, which started at 12:15 p.m., gave the public a chance to hear the difference between the two candidate's positions on infrastructure, schools, housing and other public policy issues.

I can make the case that I can, and I will, better schools and repave more streets, Hales said.

Both candidates also talked about business as a priority.

We're fourth in entrepreneurship, eleventh in best places to start and grow a business, Smith said. We want people to come here who are smart and like who we are.

We have a difference here, Hales said. I think we need to reconsider the price of our systems development charges and see if we aren't pricing ourselves out of the future.

Smith also commented on the contentious Columbia River Crossing project, recently identified in President Obama's 'We Can't Wait' initiative.

We can't pay for it. It's not a good idea for our community and it might be the end of me politically, but we should, and this club should be doing something about it, he said. I'm the better person to work on this because I've been willing to embrace the facts from the beginning.

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