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Friday, November 21, 2008


The City of Portland's latest $15.4 million of general obligation bonds for firehouse improvements sold this week. The loan is a 19-year loan at what they call a "true interest cost" of 4.4753% a year. The bond buyers -- lenders, in effect -- were a group led by Morgan Stanley. The maturity schedule is here. It's a mere $26.63 of new debt per Portland resident -- nothin' to it.

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Last night at Fire Station 16 the PFB and the Finance Bureau put on a "dog and pony show" concerning the 1998 GO bond for firehouse replacement / seismic upgrades.

The gist of last night's presentation was that there is not enough money left from the 1998 bond to pay for a newly designated station 21 (West side, near Oleson / Scholls Ferry/Beaverton Hillsdale); a replacement station 18 (currently at 30th north of Barbur, to be relocated to Barbur at Luradel), and a replacement station 31(Gresham border).

Accordingly, in the City's tradition of treating West Portland park and Far Southwest as the Cully of the westside, treating the far southwest as Cully, the Fire Bureau wants to cancel the replacement Station 18 and retrofit the current 18; not build 21 at all; and build 31 as planned.

No paved streets, no sidewalks, no new fire stations, no police substation, no emergency vehicle staging at the Sears Armory site, yet a proposal from Adams for an additional new tax to remove leaves from streets where there are trees.

Business as usual in Portland; screw the outlying neighborhoods in the Southwest..

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