POL Government Elected Officials Commissioner Nick Fish News Blog Archive Blog

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December 23, 2015

Straight Talk with Nick


On Saturday, Nick was honored to join Laural Porter on KGW's Straight Talk.


They discussed the winter storm, our utilities, homelessness, ethics reform, and the City's budget.


Check out the video!


Straight Talk: Commissioner Nick Fish

KGW News 


December 23, 2015

RACC Project Grant

For the 2016 calendar year, the Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC) has awarded over $650,000 in project grants to 131 projects and programs in the greater Portland area!


The Project Grant Program provides financial support to local non-profit organizations and artists. Grants are up to $7,000 and awarded in two categories: Artistic Focus and Community Participation & Access.


The awardees’ programs and performances include art from many genres: folk arts, theater performances, music, dance, visual arts, and more!


Nick is proud to serve as City Council liaison to RACC. The City of Portland is RACC’s largest funding source.


RACC is committed to funding diverse and accessible art programs that reach all people in our community.


Visit RACC’s website for a complete list of funded projects.


Photo courtesy of RACC.

December 22, 2015

The Weekly Catch

December 18, 2015

City Council approves all-user restroom proposal

Yesterday, the City Council unanimously approved Nick’s Resolution requiring all-user single-stall restrooms in the City of Portland.


The City action follows the lead of regional partners like Multnomah County, Portland State University, and Portland Community College; and cities like Washington D.C. and Austin, Texas.


Nick’s proposal will ensure that the City’s single-user restroom facilities are accessible to everyone. Today, City restrooms are designated for use by either men or women. This leaves parents with children, older adults with attendants, and transgender individuals with limited options. Today’s resolution directs that within six months signs at those restrooms be updated to reflect that all users are welcome.


The proposal was developed with, and supported by, key community partners, including Multnomah County, Basic Rights Oregon (BRO), the Sexual & Gender Minority Youth Resource Center (SMYRC), Public Hygiene Lets Us Stay Human (PHLUSH), Disability Rights Oregon, DEEP, and others.


Special thanks to Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury for joining us and lending her support to this proposal.


This simple but meaningful change sends a clear signal that the City Council believes City facilities should be inclusive and welcoming to all.


Resolution proposes unisex bathrooms for city

Brent Weisberg on KOIN, December 17


Hall Monitor: Accessible Restrooms, At Last?

Dirk VanderHart in the Portland Mercury, December 9


December 17, 2015

Willamette River Crossing

Making sure our drinking water system is ready for the “Big One” is a top priority for the Portland Water Bureau.


Today, the Council took an important step toward strengthening our system and preparing it for an earthquake: authorizing the Water Bureau to seek proposals to install a 4,000-foot reinforced pipe 80 feet below the Willamette River.


Together with the Washington Park Reservoir Improvements Project, the Willamette River Crossing represents major seismic upgrades to the most vulnerable areas of the Portland’s water system.


Both projects are critical to ensuring that our Bull Run water can travel to Portland’s west side, which includes all of downtown.


These investments will strengthen the City’s seismic resilience, and ensure the Water Bureau can continue to deliver high-quality, safe, and reliable drinking water at all times – even after the “Big One.”

December 16, 2015

Arts for All

The Regional Arts & Culture Council’s (RACC) Arts for All program helps make art accessible to everyone in our community.


Portlanders with Oregon Trail Cards can now get $5 tickets to see arts performances and programs around the city!


65 arts and culture organizations participate in Arts for All, including Portland Center Stage, NW Dance Project, Portland Art Museum, and many more.  


Nick is proud to serve as Council liaison to RACC, as it works to provide equal access to art for everyone in the greater Portland area. One of the requirements of RACC-funded organizations is that all productions or programs must be available to the public – without discrimination – and take place in venues that are fully accessible for people with disabilities.   


Visit RACC’s website for more information. 


Photo courtesy of RACC. 

December 14, 2015

The Muslim Educational Trust


On Saturday, Nick was honored to attend and speak at the Muslim Educational Trust’s (MET) Community Center Grand Opening.


Nick joined community, faith, and civic leaders to congratulate Wajdi Said, MET’s co-founder, and everyone involved in bringing the Center to life. He and others highlighted the importance of standing in solidarity with our Muslim American neighbors and friends.


MET seeks to enrich the public’s understanding of Islam and the Muslim community. It fosters an open, empowering, and collaborative atmosphere in the greater Portland area, between people of all faiths.


Check out MET’s website for more information. 

December 14, 2015

The Weekly Catch

December 11, 2015

Community Watershed Stewardship Program

Interested in improving your community? 


The Community Watershed Stewardship Program (CWSP) is now accepting pre-applications for their Stewardship Grants.


The grants are for innovative projects that help improve Portland’s neighborhoods and communities, as well as watershed health. The grants are up to $10,000 each. Examples of past funded projects include youth leadership and environmental education, community gardens, green spaces, and more.


For the average resident ratepayer, the grants represent an investment of about 24 cents a year, and every grant dollar invested leverages three dollars in volunteer time and similar contributions.


Pre-applications are due by 4:00 pm on Friday, February 5.


For more information, visit the Bureau of Environmental Services’ website.

December 10, 2015

Public Art

The Portland Building’s art installation space is brimming with a large collection of art from an unexpected source – public employees.


City of Portland and Multnomah County employees submitted their own unique and original artworks for the 19th annual public employee art installation, all the art that fits.

Check out the installation! And while there, vote for your favorite artwork for the “People’s Choice Award.” This year’s winner receives a gift from the Northwest Film Center to attend the Portland International Film Festival.


The Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC) sponsors the Installation Art Series. Selected through a juried process, each installation questions common perspectives through art.


All the art that fits is up until January 5. Visit RACC’s website for more information.


Portland Building Installation Art Series

1120 SW 5th Avenue

8 am – 5 pm


Photo courtesy of RACC.

December 9, 2015

Vital Aging PDX

On Saturday, Nick was honored to speak at the Vital Aging PDX conference, which highlighted the importance of older adults in our community.


Portland is a proud member of the World Health Organization’s Global Age-Friendly Cities Project. In 2013, the City Council adopted an Action Plan for an Age-Friendly Portland. The Action Plan acts as an important framework to help us understand and address the needs of older adults.


The City of Portland also collaborates with many local organizations dedicated to building a vibrant community for all ages. Our partners include Age-Friendly Portland, Elders in Action, AARP Oregon, Portland State University’s Institute on Aging, and more.


Nick serves on the Advisory Committee for Age-Friendly Portland, and is also the City Council liaison to Elders in Action.


At last weekend’s conference, Nick issued a call to action to all of our older adults: get involved! Portland is brimming with wonderful opportunities for civic and social engagement, from mentoring children to attending City Council meetings and weighing in on important policy debates.


Visit Age-Friendly Portland’s website for more information about how to get involved in our community.

December 8, 2015

It’s raining cats and dogs!

Major winter rainstorms can cause unexpected floods in parts of Portland. 


The Bureau of Environmental Services has important tips to help you and your family stay safe during extreme rains:


  • Do not walk through flowing water. Currents can be deceptive – only six inches of flowing water can knock someone off their feet! If you have to walk through flowing water, use a pole or stick.
  • Do not drive through a flooded area. It’s dangerous, and flooded waters can damage your vehicle.
  • Stay away from power lines and electrical wires. Report any downed power lines to your power company.
  • If you live or work in a floodplain, and know a flood is coming, shut off your gas and electricity.


Download the Bureau of Environmental Services’ multilingual flyer, How to Avoid the Flood, to learn more.

December 7, 2015

Our Age-Friendly City


Yesterday, Nick joined Helen Raptis on KATU’s AM Northwest to talk about the vital role of older adults in our community.


The City of Portland is proud to partner with Age-Friendly Portland, Elders in Action, AARP Oregon, Portland State University's Institute on Aging, and other local organizations to ensure that Portland is a city that works for people of all ages.


In 2013, the City Council adopted an Action Plan for an Age-Friendly Portland, a framework to help us address the unique needs of older adults. Since then, we’ve made great progress in increasing civic engagement, volunteerism, economic development, employment and more.


Nick serves on the Advisory Committee for Age-Friendly Portland, which is working hard to keep the Action Plan on track, and is also the City Council liaison to Elders in Action.


For older adults with time to give - now is the perfect time to get involved! There are so many ways to volunteer in our community. Read kindergarteners a book at your local elementary school. Attend a City Council hearing. Become a foster parent. Serve on a committee. Get involved in your neighborhood association. Mentor a child. Help a small business get started. Seek opportunities where your lifetime of experience can benefit our city!


Visit Age-Friendly Portland’s website for more information about how to get involved.


AARP: Making Portland an Age-Friendly City

Janice Bangs in KATU News

December 4, 2015

The Weekly Catch

AARP: Making Portland an Age-Friendly City

Janice Bangs in KATU News


Portland eyes $57 million project for earthquake-ready pipeline under Willamette River

Andrew Theen in The Oregonian


Proposal aims to keep Portland’s west side for losing water after major quake

Fox 12 Staff


Portland City Council mulls over new water main under Willamette

Time Gordon in KGW News


PWB wants earthquake-safe pipe beneath Willamette

Chris Woodard and KOIN 6 News


‘Grimm’ Celebrates 100 Episodes With Cake, and Lots of Love From Oregon

Amy Ratcliffe in Comic Book Resources


City Employees Now Get Parental Leave! Well, Most of Them.

Dirk VanderHart in the Portland Mercury


Commissioner Amanda Fritz Tears Into Her Colleagues (Again) As New Uber Regulations Pass

Dirk VanderHart in the Portland Mercury


Portland Deregulates Taxi Market In Divided Vote

Amelia Templeton in the OPB


With narrow vote, Uber and Lyft secure their place in Portland

Elliot Njus in The Oregonian


Amanda Fritz Lambastes Portland City Council for Giving Uber and Lyft the Green Light

Beth Slovic in the Willamette Week


Uber, Lyft Given Final Approval To Stay In Portland After City Council Vote
Mary Beth Quirk in the Consumerist


Uber and Lyft get green light into Portland taxi market

Steve Law in the Portland Tribune

Portland City Council approves permanent status of ride sharing programs

Fox 12 News Staff


Uber Rules Might Finally Pass Tomorrow. Surprise Rules For Pedicabs Won’t.

Dirk VanderHart in the Portland Mercury


Portland's Not Getting a Demolition Tax - This Year

Dirk VanderHart in the Portland Mercury


Lacking votes, Charlie Hales delays Portland demolition tax again

Brad Schmidt in The Oregonian


Support lacking, Hales postpones demolition tax vote again

Jim Redden in the Portland Tribune


Council to vote on $25,000 demolition tax

Jim Redden in the Portland Tribune


Charities hope Oregonians embrace #GivingTuesday

Kaellen Hessel in KGW News

December 4, 2015

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