POL Government Elected Officials Commissioner Nick Fish

Welcome to Commissioner Nick Fish's website

Commissioner Fish is in charge of the Portland Water Bureau and the Bureau of Environmental Services.  He is also Council liaison to Elders in Action, Venture Portland, and the Regional Arts & Culture Council.



Managing stormwater sustainably

SW Huber Street got a much needed make-over with a new green street facility.


Before the new facility, the road had a small storm drain that easily clogged with debris and frequently flooded. Stormwater that didn’t go down the drain flowed and carried pollutants to the Quail and Tryon creeks. 


The Bureau of Environmental Services constructed the new sustainable green facility.  With native plants to filter stormwater pollutants, the facility protects water quality in local creeks.  It also slows stormwater runoff to help prevent flooding.


Portland is a leader in green stormwater management.  Throughout the city, there are 1400-1500 green street facilities! Green infrastructure filters pollutants, provides habitat, and helps watersheds stay healthy.  


Check out the Bureau of Environmental Services’ website for more information.

October 29, 2014

Tips for a great garden, all year round

The leaves are changing colors, the weather is cooling, and the rainy season is upon us.


While conditions may not be ideal for gardening, take time this fall to give your lawn the TLC it needs so it will be ready to bloom beautifully next spring.


The Portland Water Bureau has tips and tricks to prepare your gardens for the colder seasons:

  1. Make your own mulch by composting leaves and other garden debris. It’ll be great to use in the spring!
  2. Plant ‘waterwise’ plants.  Perfect for fall rainy weather, waterwise plants require lots of water while being established.  Afterwards, it needs less water than traditional plants, meaning less watering in the warmer months. 
  3. Winterize your automatic sprinkler system.  Empty the sprinklers of water, and don’t forget to turn them off.  This will save you money by preventing pipes from breaking during freezing temperatures.

Check out the Portland Water Bureau’s website for more information. 

October 28, 2014

Westmoreland Park’s grand reopening and salmon celebration


On Saturday, Nick and fellow Portlanders gathered to celebrate the newly renovated Westmoreland Park and restoration of Crystal Springs Creek.


The Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) was proud to partner with Portland Parks & Recreation on the renovation and restoration project. Crystal Springs Creek runs through Westmoreland Park. 


The project included converting a duck pond into a wetland, removing nine culverts, adding walkways, planting nearly 2000 native plants and trees, and much more! 


One of the objectives was to restore salmon habitat, and thanks to BES and Parks’ collaborative efforts, salmon are back in the city! Crystal Springs Creek is now a safe, flourishing home for Coho salmon and other critters. 


Saturday’s event had family-friendly activities, tours, and even a 29-foot long salmon display!  The Grand Ronde and Siletz Native American tribes also participated in the event, with blessings, cultural songs, dance, and food cooked in their delicious, traditional ways.


Children also got to enjoy Portland’s first Nature Play Area!  Part of Westmoreland Park’s reconstruction, the unique playground encourages children to use their creativity and imaginations while interacting with nature. 

It also serves as a great location for local education and child development programs.


Check out the beautiful Westmoreland Park! And while you’re there, try to spot a Coho salmon as they swim upstream.  It’s their spawning season. 


Visit BES’ website for more information about the project.

Portland's Westmoreland Park celebrates its reopening, salmon invited (photos)

Michael Lloyd in The Oregonian

Westmoreland Park Rededication

The Oregonian

Restoration project brings salmon back to Portland park

Tim Gordon in KGW News

October 27, 2014

Celebrating Southeast Division Street


This morning, Nick and Commissioner Novick celebrated the completion of the Division Streetscape Project at OpenFest!


The Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) and the Portland Bureau of Transportation collaborated on the Streetscape Project, transforming Southeast Division into a “green street.” It now has many new features, including new green street facilities, sidewalks, better access to transit, and, thanks to our friends at the Regional Arts & Culture Council, beautiful public art installations. 

OpenFest celebrated the end of the major street construction with fun festivities, including live music, delicious foods, drinks, and lots of shopping!


Nick and Commissioner Novick toured local neighborhood small businesses that were impacted by the construction – like Mirador Kitchen & Home, Josephine’s Dry Goods, and Flying Cat Coffee. Nick returned to the office with a fall bouquet from Floare Design.


Our local small businesses not only add colorful character our neighborhoods, but are also the backbone of Portland’s economy.  Let’s support them this autumn and holiday season by shopping locally. 

October 24, 2014

Friday Roundup

Northwest Dance Project's 'New Now Wow' features world premieres from Czech choreographer Jiří Pokorný, Portlander Minh Tran and New Yorker Yin Yue

Celina Russell in The Oregonian

Steve Duin: An expanding showcase for Oregon writers and Literary Arts

Steve Duin in The Oregonian

Portland City Council votes 4-to-0 to appeal part of federal judge's ruling on police reform updates

Maxine Bernstein in The Oregonian

Despite sewage overflow, Big Pipe doing its job, city says

Joe Douglass in Katu News

Rain Overflows Portland's Big Pipe, Putting Sewage In River

OPB News

Steady hard rainfall causes combined sewer overflow in Portland, officials issue 48 hour warning

Andrew Theen in The Oregonian

BES director put on leave during investigation

Dan Tilkin in KOIN 6 News

How Portland managers skirted orders to stop paying architect of over-budget Columbia Building
Brad Schmidt in The Oregonian

Audit Finds Numerous Costly Problems With Portland's Columbia Building

Rob Manning in OPB

Portland Environmental Services Director Dean Marriott Placed on Leave After City Audit of Sewer Office Building
Aaron Mesh in the Willamette Week

Overspending and under-accounting at the Columbia treatment plant: Editorial Agenda 2014

The Oregonian Editorial Board

Portland administrator Dean Marriott placed on paid leave as audit finds insufficient oversight on $11.5 million office project

Brad Schmidt in The Oregonian

After Damning Audit of Budget-Busting Building, Fish Puts Sewer Bureau Chief on Leave

Denis C. Theriault in the Portland Mercury

B.E.S. Columbia Building: Scope additions and ineffective design oversight led to substantially higher project costs
City Audit, LaVonne Griffin-Valade

Press Release from Auditor LaVonne Griffin-Valade

October 22, 2014

City focuses on safety with proposed street fee funds

Jim Redden in the Portland Tribune

Several Northwest Portland businesses, high-rise condo building out of water after early morning water main break

Noelle Crombie in The Oregonian

Water main break floods NW 23rd Place

Elishah Oesch and KOIN 6 News Staff

Water main breaks at NW 23rd Place and Westover

Jim Reddin in the Portland Tribune


October 24, 2014

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