The May 26 City Council hearings carried many items affecting Portlander's wallets. One item in the 2010 - 11 Budget that prompted questions at the Laurelhurst Neighborhood Association when I visited later that day, was the Leaf Collection fee added in 24 "leaf collection zones". Laurelhurst residents and I agree more information and discussion is needed as to what it is and whether it is a service desired by residents of highly-treed areas.
In the meantime, residents with trees on your property may be helped by knowing you can get a discount on the stormwater portion of your sewer bill. Other on-site stormwater management facilities (yes, trees are "stormwater management facilities") qualify too, for the Clean River Rewards program. The form to apply for the discount is found through that link.
Another program that does good things is the Choose Local credit card through Unitus Credit Union. These local companies will split the income from credit card use with programs such as Multnomah County's SUN Schools (Schools Uniting Neighborhoods) and the Summer Youth Connect program that helps students stay linked to their schools over the long break. When I visited Marshall High School's Step Up program Family Night earlier this week, students were signing up for Summer Youth Connect eagerly. The Choose Local card also gets you discounts at local businesses. More information about the Choose Local program here, and about the creidt card here. The credit card has no annual fee, and yet even if you pay off your balance within the grace period each month, it generates money for education. Thank you to Mayor Adams and his staff and to our community partners, who brought this project together.