Detail, east Portland photo, courtesy Miles Hochstein / Portland Ground.

For old times' sake
The bojack bumper sticker -- only $1.50!

To order, click here.

Excellent tunes -- free! And on your browser right now. Just click on Radio Bojack!

E-mail us here.


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on November 7, 2006 9:11 AM. The previous post in this blog was Big day. The next post in this blog is You can't do that. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



Law and Taxation
How Appealing
TaxProf Blog
Mauled Again
Tax Appellate Blog
A Taxing Matter
Josh Marquis
Native America, Discovered and Conquered
The Yin Blog
Ernie the Attorney
Above the Law
The Volokh Conspiracy
Going Concern
Bag and Baggage
Wealth Strategies Journal
Jim Hamilton's World of Securities Regulation
World of Work
The Faculty Lounge
Lowering the Bar
OrCon Law

Hap'nin' Guys
Tony Pierce
Parkway Rest Stop
Along the Gradyent
Dwight Jaynes
Bob Borden
Dingleberry Gazette
The Red Electric
Iced Borscht
Jeremy Blachman
Dean's Rhetorical Flourish
Straight White Guy
As Time Goes By
Dave Wagner
Jeff Selis
Alas, a Blog
Scott Hendison
The View Through the Windshield
Appliance Blog
The Bleat

Hap'nin' Gals
My Whim is Law
Lelo in Nopo
Attorney at Large
Linda Kruschke
The Non-Consumer Advocate
10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place
A Pig of Success
Attorney at Large
Margaret and Helen
Kimberlee Jaynes
Cornelia Seigneur
And Sew It Goes
Mile 73
Rainy Day Thoughts
That Black Girl
Posie Gets Cozy
Cat Eyes
Rhi in Pink
Ragwaters, Bitters, and Blue Ruin
Rose City Journal
Type Like the Wind

Portland and Oregon
Isaac Laquedem
Rantings of a [Censored] Bus Driver
Jeff Mapes
Vintage Portland
The Portlander
South Waterfront
Amanda Fritz
O City Hall Reporters
Guilty Carnivore
Old Town by Larry Norton
The Alaunt
Bend Blogs
Lost Oregon
Cafe Unknown
Tin Zeroes
David's Oregon Picayune
Mark Nelsen's Weather Blog
Travel Oregon Blog
Portland Daily Photo
Portland Building Ads
Portland Food and
Dave Knows Portland
Idaho's Portugal
Alameda Old House History
MLK in Motion

Retired from Blogging
Various Observations...
The Daily E-Mail
Saving James
Portland Freelancer
Furious Nads (b!X)
Izzle Pfaff
The Grich
Kevin Allman
AboutItAll - Oregon
Lost in the Details
Worldwide Pablo
Tales from the Stump
Whitman Boys
Two Pennies
This Stony Planet
1221 SW 4th
I am a Fish
Here Today
What If...?
Superinky Fixations
The Rural Bus Route
Another Blogger
Mikeyman's Computer Treehouse
Portland Housing Blog

Wonderfully Wacky
Dave Barry
Borowitz Report
Stuff White People Like
Worst of the Web

Valuable Time-Wasters
My Gallery of Jacks
Litterbox, On the Prowl
Litterbox, Bag of Bones
Litterbox, Scratch
Ride That Donkey
Singin' Horses
Rally Monkey
Simon Swears
Strong Bad's E-mail

Oregon News
The Oregonian
Portland Tribune
Willamette Week
The Sentinel
Southeast Examiner
Northwest Examiner
Sellwood Bee
Mid-County Memo
Vancouver Voice
Eugene Register-Guard
OPB - Portland
Salem Statesman-Journal
Oregon Capitol News
Portland Business Journal
Daily Journal of Commerce
Oregon Business
Portland Info Net
McMinnville News Register
Lake Oswego Review
The Daily Astorian
Bend Bulletin
Corvallis Gazette-Times
Roseburg News-Review
Medford Mail-Tribune
Ashland Daily Tidings
Newport News-Times
Albany Democrat-Herald
The Eugene Weekly
Portland IndyMedia
The Columbian

The Beatles
Bruce Springsteen
Joni Mitchell
Ella Fitzgerald
Steve Earle
Joe Ely
Stevie Wonder
Lou Rawls

E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

PDC: Same old stonewall

Fireman Randy knows a rat when he smells one. He's been trying to get to the bottom of one of the Portland Development Commission's classic developer giveaways, the one at SW Third and Oak. But when the city attorney asks to see internal PDC documents about that particular scam, the response is more like a raised finger than anything else. And so today the good commissioner is calling for the relevant records to be subpoenaed:

Now, months after the Council directed the audit, the PDC is refusing to release emails and documents to the City Attorney that relate to the history of PDC's involvement with the SW 3rd and Oak property. "I am very disappointed at PDC’s continual disregard for their responsibility as a public agency," said Commissioner Leonard, "Despite the best efforts of the Mayor to improve their transparency, the PDC continues to act like an organization with something to hide."

Accordingly, Commissioner Leonard filed a resolution today that will empower the City Attorney to exercise the City’s Charter authority to subpoena any documents the City Attorney may deem appropriate to conduct a thorough audit of the history of PDC's involvement with the SW 3rd and Oak property.

Go get 'em, Randy! If you ever need a place to host the dirt you find, you know where to come.

Comments (14)

I can't believe Randy Leonard has to file a resolution to look at communications of a public entity. Isn't that all part of the 'checks and balances' of government? What the hell is going on here? It's obvious the PDC thinks they're above investigation.

Just amazing.

Especially since Potter's people dominate the board and the top management. Crazy.

Sten, Adams and Leonard are all up to here with the PDC but for differing reasons. If they could get together, they have the votes to refer a charter amendment to the voters that could rein in that beast once and for all.

PDC is a beast all right. A LYING and CORRUPT beast.

Man, if you all knew what internal chaos the agency was in right now, you'd know how bad PDC leaderships wants to hide things.

Word around the water cooler is that a fair amount of staff are drafting a letter to City Council demanding that Potter do something - Bruce Warner it turns out has not been able to effectively manage the organization. In fact, many of us feel it's even worse than when Mazziotti was in power.

Go Randy.

Wasn't Warner just hired?

Or is my conception of the space-time continuum fouled up again?

Bruce Warner was hired in June of 2005. Under his management there has been over 38% staff turnover including staff that have been there for many years and some that have only stayed a few months or even weeks before bailing. This is highly unusual in the government sector.

In addition, the number of complaints, greivances and employee related law-suits has increased since his tenure.

Bruce has had some very questionable direct hires at over $85,000 salaries including the direct appointment of Rochelle Lessner (remember jobs at PDC should be open hiring processes) to some position they made up "policy director" - and she only lasted about a year. And then Mark Murray - a direct appointment to CFO through Bruce and recetnly the PDC Commission and others demanded that he be demoted (which he was), due to questionable expenditures such as contracts, the third and oak project, etc. This means that one of the most important positions at PDC - the person in charge of expenditures remains a very unstable position.

Futhermore, the economic development director was vacant for over 1 year, the public affairs department is in crisis (which could help explain the lack of transparency issue), and Bruce just keeps creating more and more high paid management positions (think I'm joking look at the PDC jobs section on their website)

Mr Warner may have his heart in the right place, but he has had about a year and a half to clean things up and he hasn't.

Moral is worse than any other era I've seen theren (and trust me I've seen some doozies), and the place is really just falling apart at the seams.

PDC may not have been in the newspapers much lately, but trust me, things will start coming out soon.

I'm pretty sure the public will be shocked.

"Under his management there has been over 38% staff turnover..."

Is that why the PDC had so many job postings in the Sunday Oregonian the last few weeks?

Why, yes. That, and a bunch of new positions created by Bruce Warner

Geez, I almost want to take out an ad in the Oregonian as a Public Service Announcement:

If you are interested in working at PDC, you might want to think twice...Interested in working for an agency with a proven track record of shady business dealings? Interested in working in an evironment that thrives on bullying, unprofessionalism, and cronyism? Interested in possibly having your name dragged through the mud in the newspaper and other media outlets for questionable business practices? Want to work for an agency that can not hold on to staff, where you won't be able to keep up with the names of your co-workers because they rotate out so often, and where you might be asked to do the job of 2-3 people because there are so many vacant positions? There is a reason there are so many job postings for PDC out there - and it's not because it's a great place to work.

Ok, thanks for the clarification. Hope stuff gets better for you.

I'm not sure that high turnover after a "regime change" is bad. But if morale is down, positions go unfilled, and a needless new layer of bureaucracy is being created, those are all bad things.

Thanks Mark. me - I'm fine. I just feel bad for all the other good people that still work at PDC and can't get their work done because of bad leadership (and that means you too Potter) and are put in awkward and potentially unethical positions on a daily basis. (and yes, there are many good people there).

Jack, I agree with you about tunrnover after a regime change, and frankly some people really did need to go. However, this goes way beyond that - many of these turnovers were hired and then quit DURING Bruce's tenor as well as many staff that were well respected and actually trusted by the community (a rare thing at PDC, you'd think they would try to hold onto them).

This staff turnover issue, while not front page (or even back page) Oregonian stuff, should be a huge red-flag for City Council and the community. It also makes getting any work done on a staff level next to impossible, and with so many vacancies, work gets half done, remains unfinished, and things fall through the cracks, leaving PDC highly at risk for mistakes.Plus iot's just a basic fact of human nature that in a low morale work environment, people just aren't motivated to do their best. It makes me sad to see so many people give up like that. But I can't say I blame them - they get treated like crap now matter how hard they work.

For a perfect example, I bet half the problem with getting the SW Oak audit materials is because many of the staff that worked on that project are now gone. With lack of document management systems in place and such a high-staff turnover, I bet a lot of those memos, reports, etc are just plain lost.

In any organization, management sets the tone. And in Portland Government - whether at the city, county, or regional level, the tone is identical - arrogance.

Of course this approach fosters low morale. And when the people who are actually supposed to do the work required to make things run are disrespected time and again, they adopt a not-unreasonable attitude: "I'm gonna do the bare minimum required in order not to get fired until I can find another job."

One cause of the "classic developer giveaways" that Jack posts is the "conflict of interest" issue that has been occuring at PDC. PDC has been reluctant to address this issue.

This summer at the Eleven Urban Renewal Advisory Committee Orientation (URAC) meeting, PDC's attorney defined the meaning of "conflict of interest". If a member is directly benefited by an action and its discussion, they are "in conflict" if they participate and vote.

URACs in large majority is made up of "stakeholders", owners/developers of property within a URA. Very few "at-large" people are members of these URACs. The general taxpayer who is footing a large majority of the bills of a URA are very lightly represented. This needs to change as well as adherence to "conflict of interest" state regs.

Amendment 8 of the North Macadam URA definitely exhibits the "conflict of interest" that has been occuring at the URAC, PDC Commission and City Council levels. Block 49 in NM was bought by Homer Williams, etc. for $1.2M one year before it was sold to PDC for $5M with several additional advantages given to Homer. He and his representative on the URAC participated and voted on Amendment 8 motions, and he monetarily benefited by his vote. This "conflict" was mentioned at the URAC meeting, but was ignored.

This has been occuring in other URACs and other PDC hearings. It needs to be addressed because it is contributing to the the "giveaways".


As a lawyer/blogger, I get
to be a member of:

In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
King Estate, Pinot Gris, Backbone 2014
Oberon, Napa Cabernet 2013
Apaltagua, Envero Carmenere Gran Reserva 2013
Chateau des Arnauds, Cuvee des Capucins 2012
Nine Hats, Red 2013
Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Roxy Ann, Claret 2012
Januik, Merlot 2012
Conundrum, White 2013
St. Francis, Sonoma Cabernet 2012

The Occasional Book

Marc Maron - Waiting for the Punch
Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
Ruth Sepetys - Between Shades of Gray
Richard Adams - Watership Down
Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
Anthony Doerr - All the Light We Cannot See
James Joyce - Dubliners
Cheryl Strayed - Torch
William Golding - Lord of the Flies
Saul Bellow - Mister Sammler's Planet
Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
Kent Haruf - Eventide
David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 5
At this date last year: 3
Total run in 2017: 113
In 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

Clicky Web Analytics