PORTLAND The Portland Police Bureau s mounted patrol stables are a multi-million dollar investment one group wants to see protected from city budget cuts.

Developer Bob Ball wrote the city a letter, pledging a huge donation through his non-profit Friends of Portland's mounted patrol.

They donate about $25,000 a year to care for the horses, but the board just pledged an additional $150,000 over the next three years.

Ball is a captain for the police reserves and says the mounted patrol has a unique way of protecting and representing the city.

They're an icon of the City of Portland, he said. As former Mayor Vera Katz said, they put a gentle face on the city, but we also can't forget they're out doing hard police work every day.

Friends of Portland's mounted patrol is also inviting people and businesses to sponsor a horse - it costs about $5,000-a year to care for one.

KGWReporter Katherine Cook contributed to this report

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