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City utility rate review
Join Nick and the Portland City Council to learn more about a proposed 4.92% sewer, stormwater, and water services rate increase for FY 2014-15, and share your feedback with the Council.
The meeting will include a brief overview of operating budgets, capital improvement programs and projects, and the rate-making process for the Portland Water Bureau (PWB) and the Bureau of Environmental Services (BES).
Typically, utility rate-making occurs near the end of the City budget process in May. To increase transparency, Nick and Mayor Hales are bringing the proposed rate increase to the public as soon as possible.
Your City Council, along with staff from both PWB and BES, will be on hand to answer questions.
The City Utility Rate Review will be held on March 19 from 6:30 – 9:30 pm at Parkrose High School. Doors will open early, so if you want to come before the formal agenda begins to talk with staff or learn more about the bureaus, please do!
Learn more about the City budget process at the City Budget Office website.
City Utility Rate Review
6:30 - 8:30 pm
12003 NE Shaver St.
March 11, 2014
Slough 101 Workshop
Learn all about the Columbia Slough Watershed and its unique history!
The Columbia Slough is a beautiful 60-mile long floodplain of the Columbia River. Previously, Native Americans lived along the wetlands. Today, ten percent of all jobs in Oregon are located around the Slough.
Slough 101 is a free workshop that covers watershed health, environmental issues, wildlife and history of the region. Participate in hands-on activities and go on levee and pump station tours. Eight local experts will be on hand to answer a range of questions, from where to see Great Blue Herons to flood management.
Slough 101 is on Saturday, March 15, from 9 am – 12:45 pm at the Multnomah County Drainage District. Light refreshments are provided. Please register on the Columbia Slough Watershed Council’s website.
9 am – 12:45 pm
Saturday, March 15 2014
Multnomah County Drainage Districts
1880 NE Elrod Dr.
March 10, 2014
Division/Clinton First Friday
The Division/Clinton Business Association is hosting a First Friday event tonight!
Every first Friday of the month, Portlanders and local businesses get together and enjoy entertainment, art, and great food in this historic neighborhood.
The Division/Clinton Business Association has been going strong since the 1930s, promoting the prosperity of the neighborhood for residents and local businesses alike.
Check out Venture Portland’s website for more upcoming events in Portland neighborhoods.
Photo courtesy of Venture Portland.
March 7, 2014
Peter Korn in the Portland Tribune, March 5, 2014
Denis C. Theriault in the Portland Mercury, March 4, 2014
Jamie Hale in the Oregonian, February 28, 2014
Commissioner Amanda Fritz in The Oregonian, February 28, 2014
March 7, 2014
The Age-Friendly Portland Advisory Council has launched a new website, AgeFriendlyPortland.org.
Unanimously supported by Portland City Council, Elders in Action, and other organizations throughout Portland, Age-Friendly Portland is dedicated to building an empowered and engaged community of older adults in our wonderful city.
AgeFriendlyPortland.org provides information for upcoming events and opportunities, highlights community partners’ initiatives, and shares news articles and other important resources.
Age-Friendly communities can be found all over the world, with more continually popping up. Currently there are 145 in 22 countries! To learn more about other Age-Friendly communities, visit Age-Friendly World’s website.
Get connected by joining a committee or volunteering! Email email@example.com or call (503) 235 – 5474 for more information.
Photo courtesy of Elders in Action.
March 6, 2014
Glencoe Rain Garden - 10 years later
This winter has been especially rainy – it makes us grateful for our innovative systems that manage heavy stormwater.
Over a decade ago, some Mt. Tabor neighbors had sewage flooding their basements because heavy water runoff was clogging small pipes.
The Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) worked to install larger pipes to prevent overflow. They also partnered with Portland Public Schools and Glencoe Elementary School to design the beautiful Glencoe Rain Garden, which captures rain and stormwater runoff.
The garden provides the community with a lovely area of nature, and doubles as an outdoor classroom with a butterfly garden for Glencoe Elementary School.
10 years later, it is still a success! There have been no reported basement backups in the neighborhood. The native plants and soils in the rain garden are doing well and soak up 85% of annual runoff water. It also prevents pollutants from entering our sewers and rivers.
To learn more about how Portland focuses on “green” solutions to stormwater management, visit BES’s website.
March 5, 2014
Out with the old pipes and valves, in with the new
The Portland Water Bureau’s Operations Group is improving water quality and making sure our drinking water is up to par with federal and state requirements.
Upgrades are in process for the water supply system at the Bull Run Watershed and
the massive pipes that carry water to our reservoirs. Water Bureau crews are at the Sandy River Station, replacing old air valve vaults. The new valves will help maintain system efficiency and prevent contamination by flood water.
Crews are also installing six new flow meters. Some of the existing meters are over 90 years old. The flow meters help measure and monitor chlorine in water, which keeps our water clean and safe to drink.
To learn more, check out the Portland Water Bureau’s Water Blog.
March 4, 2014
Portland2014's Binennial of Contemporary Art
Portland2014’s diverse art exhibitions come from an array of talented artists, including Portland’s Zachary Davis, whose mixed media art incorporates magnets, PVC, glass, and even YouTube videos. Personal Libraries Library recreates libraries from some of history’s greatest minds, and Professor Christopher Michlig takes on the manipulation of communication with vivid neon colors and shapes.
Portland2014: A Biennial of Contemporary Art goes from March 8 to April 27. All Portland2014 venues are free and open to the public, from 12 - 6 pm, Tuesday - Saturday.
An opening reception will be held at Disjecta on Saturday, March 8, from 6 - 10 pm.
Please check Biennial Disjecta’s website for more information.
Photo courtesy of Disjecta Contemporary
March 3, 2014
Jim Redden in the Portland Tribune, February 27, 2014
Molly Young in The Oregonian, February 27, 2014
Denis C. Theriault in the Portland Mercury, February 27, 2014
Time Hall from the Portland Water Bureau, February 25, 2014
Koin 6 News Staff, February 25, 2014
Katy Muldoom in The Oregonian, February 25, 2014
Commissioner Fish Support Letter: HB 4143A
February 28, 2014
The Mt. Tabor park tree update
Over the last week, I’ve heard from a number of people concerned about a future Portland Water Bureau project in Mt. Tabor Park, and its potential effects on the trees and landscape of the park.
Here’s some basic information.
As part of a federal water quality mandate, the Water Bureau is required to disconnect the park’s open reservoirs from the water distribution system by the end of 2015. But not to worry – we’ll still be able to fill the reservoirs with water in the future.
The bureau must go through a Land Use Review before they start any work. There are two possible review paths – Type II and Type III. Based on community feedback, I have directed the bureau to submit a Type III application, which includes a public hearing before the application is approved.
Water Bureau planners and engineers worked closely with Portland Parks & Recreation to develop the current tree mitigation proposal (including planting 1,200 new trees), and I appreciate the hard work they have done to date.
That said, I share community members’ concerns regarding the potential impact on trees in the park. Accordingly, I have directed Water Bureau staff to work with the Urban Forester at Portland Parks & Recreation to take a fresh look at this project and its potential impact to Mt. Tabor’s trees.
As part of this fresh look, Water and Parks staff will review the project’s potential impacts and the current mitigation proposal, and will identify any opportunities to further reduce the effects on trees in the park.
Here’s some additional information about the current proposed project and Mt. Tabor’s trees:
February 26, 2014
Minimize your lead exposure!
Older plumbing features and using lead solder in pipes can lead to higher levels of lead in our tap water.
There are significant health risks by consuming too much lead. It can damage organs, deteriorate bones, and have negative effects on fetuses. It can also lower children’s IQs.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that 10-20 percent of a person’s lead exposure may come from drinking tap water.
The Portland Water Bureau (PWB) recommends the following steps to reduce your exposure to lead:
To get more information about having your water tested for lead or reducing your exposure, contact LeadLine at (503) 988-4000 or visit their website.
February 26, 2014
From Brownfield to zen
Dharma Rain, with the assistance of BES’ Brownfield Program, purchased a former landfill site with the intention to restore it. On Saturday, volunteers from the Dharma Zen Rain Center, Friends of Trees, the Backyard Habitat Certification Program, Madison High School and the greater Portland community transformed the former landfill by planting over 1,200 native trees and shrubs in one day!
BES, along with Friends of Trees and other Portland non-profits and community groups, partner up for green restoration days in our local neighborhoods. A total of 4,000 trees and shrubs will be planted in Portland neighborhoods by the end of the “green spaces” season.
There are 18 events left with Friends of Trees. Make our city a little greener and check out the Friends for Trees calendar to register for future events! No special skills are necessary and all tools (and lunch!) are provided. The next one is Saturday, March 1, and the volunteer series goes until May 17.
Photo courtesy of Dharma Rain Zen Center.
February 25, 2014
HB 4143A: Serving families in need
Today, Nick was pleased to submit a letter of support for House Bill 4143A, which would authorize Oregon courts to direct unclaimed damages from class action lawsuits to fund an endowment for legal aid services.
Legal Aid Services of Oregon (LASO) is one non-profit which could benefit from the endowment. LASO provides representation on civil cases to low-income families in Oregon. They work on over 8,000 cases each year – but only about 15% of eligible Oregonians receive the help they need.
HB 4143A would redirect unclaimed class action case funds to the legal aid endowment, ensuring that thousands of deserving Oregon families receive quality legal services.
On Saturday, The Oregonian’s Steve Duin highlighted the Bill and its co-sponsors, Representatives Jennifer Williamson and Tobias Read.
The Senate Committee on Judiciary is scheduled to hold a work session on the Bill tomorrow.
Steve Duin in The Oregonian
February 24, 2014
Portland Jazz Festival is in full swing
In celebration of Black History Month, Portland is hosting its annual Jazz Festival!
The nationally-recognized Portland Jazz Festival is dedicated to preserving America’s Jazz identity. The event takes place all over Portland, with many performances in multiple venues throughout the city. At the heart of the program lie Jazz education and outreach programs for local schools and neighborhoods.
As Portland’s Arts & Culture Commissioner, Nick looks forward to seeing our own homegrown, Grammy Award-winning Esperanza Spalding, who will sing in a Spring Quartet along side Jack DeJohnette, Joe Lovano, and Leo Genovese with Matt Fleeger. They will perform at the Portland’5 ArtBar & Bistro on Sunday, February 23, at 2 pm. The event is free.
PDX Jazz, the non-profit cultural arts organization that co-produces the festival also has year-round Jazz performances at the Mission Theater and Jimmy Mak’s.
The festival goes until March 2. For more information about Portland Jazz Festival and its events, please visit the website.
Photo courtesy of the Portland Jazz Festival
February 21, 2014
Steve Law in the Portland Tribune
Steve Law in the Portland Tribune
Kathy Eaton in the Star News
Joe Smith in KGW News
February 21, 2014
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