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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on February 1, 2012 9:19 PM. The previous post in this blog was Big day in California. The next post in this blog is Your tax dollars at work: "green" bribery. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Portland: The City That Hates You

Here's a new atrocity from Sam Rand City Hall. A reader writes:

I recently discovered an interesting and unusual Portland parking law today after I was issued a ticket. I parked in the NE industrial area near Widmer brewery (zone J 2 hour zone) in the morning (9am) and returned again briefly in the afternoon 2pm. Apparently it is ILLEGAL in Portland to go to the barber shop in that zone in the morning and return for a meal in the afternoon according to the parking regulations (below). I even parked on a different block! Oh well, Portland has my $60.
16.20.860 Violation and Enforcement.

C. During permit designated hours, it is unlawful for a nonpermitted vehicle to:

1. Exceed the maximum visitor time limit allowed within the signed permit area;

2. Return to the signed permit area for a period of 12 hours after parking for any time period.

Silly reader. Probably lives in a detached single-family home, too.

Look, friend, there's an easy solution to your problem: Don't do business in Portland.

Comments (40)

This is like having twice a month garbage service for the same price as once a week garbage service - the city planners and leadership in Portland are no longer afraid to express open contempt of their constituents.

I assume that the next step will be to make half the streets in residential areas of Portland "no parking", purely to make it more difficult to operate a car in Portland and raise some revenue, in accordance with the dictates of the planners.

There are a few NW places in PDX that have good food.
Guess, the suburban community will get my business.
Parking is a joke.

How could he have even paid for the parking it if he wanted to?? Effing Insanity.

Maybe this is to "encourage" you to stay and spend in your own "village".
Isn't there a constitutional issue concerning reasonable freedom of movement.
Questions:
How do "they" know the vehicle was there more than 2 hours total?
What if there were different drivers and neither knew the other was in the zone?
What does the Portland Business Alliance think of this?

The reader needs 2 cars--an A.M. car & a P.M. car

How do "they" know the vehicle was there more than 2 hours total?

They don't have to. The way the rule is written, the meter enforcer just enters your license plate when he or she first sees your car. If she enters your number again more than 2 hours but less than 12 hours later, you get a ticket.

I was serious about just not going where the Sam Rands charge you to park.

How's this supposed to work if you're car sharing, which is what the city is encouraging people to do?

It costs more than $60 for expired license plate stickers while parked along the Park Blocks on a Sunday morning when the meters don't start working until 1 pm. (My spouse was not amused that the stickers didn't get stuck on the plates.) This means the City's paying patrollers to find non-parking violations before they can cite parking violations. Do you suppose they're getting overtime or volunteering? Of course, they never check to see if PCPA employees/guests are even displaying valid permits for their free on-street parking privileges (weekends or not).

This is yet another reason I only journey into Portland once (or twice, max) a year. I'm very happy staying in Vancouver.

We have the Commerce Clause, the Dormant Commerce Clause, and now the Reverse Commerce Clause.

Isn't the new Urbanist plan for 20-minute walking neighborhoods anyway? Maybe this is just Portland's way of telling you that if can't walk to somewhere, you shouldn't be there anyway. Way to go Portland!

Now I know why there is a feeling of doom among the hipsters who feel they have to raise their own poultry - they aren't sure just how available goods and services will be in the future. And with leaders like these, maybe they do have something to worry about.

2. Return to the signed permit area for a period of 12 hours after parking for any time period.
JK Shouldn't there be some street signs to this effect? Ore are we all expected to read thousands pages of city BS in order to be law abiding? (And county & state & fed BS)

I read recently that there are so many Federal laws that any one of us could be cited for three felonies and ignorance of the law is no excuse.

"Don't do business in Portland."

Not a problem, all the job growth is in Bvtn/Hillsboro. In 10yrs when they are bigger than Portland, maybe people will realize how incompetent this regime was.

I'm old enough to remember when Portland's electorate selected Neil and this, "we hate cars" mess, got started.

I believe it's another one of many "economic incentives" to keep your stinking car or truck out of bicycle town, with many more around the corner.

Steve:

Hillsboro population 2010: 91,611
Hillsboro population 2000: 70,186

Beaverton population 2010: 89,803
Beaverton population 2000: 76,129

Portland population 2010: 583,776
Portland population 2000: 529,121

Unless Mt. Tabor erupts and covers the entirety of the east side in lava, there's no way that either suburb, or both combined, will be larger than Portland in the next 30 years.

Someone should take that to court.

Next up, a "congestion charge" London style for entering parts of the city via car.

But if the reader had only ridden his bike like a good boy, he could have parked there for the rest of his life for free and no ticket.

They need you to drive so they can collect gas taxes to repair the few streets they deign to maintain. But then with bioswales and bike lanes and "traffic calming devices" and hyper-vigilant meter maids/men it's clear they also don't want you to actually go or park anywhere. Maybe you're just supposed to idle your car in your driveway or garage. Oh wait, no, they also don't want you to idle your car for environmental reasons. Maybe the solution is to return to dirt roads and horse carts.

I'm old enough to remember when Portland's electorate selected Neil and this, "we hate cars" mess, got started.

I remember those days too, except back then "car hating" didn't have anything to do with climate change or being green, it came out of a disdain for all things California, especially Southern California with its heavy dependence on an automobile lifestyle, and a desire to avoid LA-style urban sprawl from taking over the Portland area. Back then we naively believed that by imposing higher housing costs on ourselves through Metro's UGB, places like Tigard, Beaverton, Tualatin, Wilsonville, Sherwood, Gresham, Clackamas, Oregon City, and Happy Valley wouldn't grow past the sleepy semi-rural crossroads that they were at the time, and our area would be spared the evil of suburban growth.

But that didn't work, the UGB actually encouraged suburban growth and sprawl, housing in Portland skyrocketed in value, and our local government bodies morphed into what they are today, real estate development corporations wearing greenface doing a bad job of being local government bodies.

Car-hating has remained, but the rationale has been redefined to meet the current popular concern.

I adopted the "Easy Solution" last year.

The only Portland shopping I do now is in the Zona Franca ("free zone") at Jantzen Beach or the Cascade "Eco-Station" big box stores.

Alternately, I can pay quite a bit of Washington Sales Tax before exceeding the new price of a City of Portland parking ticket.

This person needs to send a letter to both businesses letting them know why they will never see them again.

Keeping 16.20.860 (C)(1) on the books makes sense if you simply want to turn over parking spaces and avoid what we used to call "meter plugging" (what's it called now BTW - "meter stickering"?). The regulation probably should stop there.

The second part, 16.20.860 (C)(2), is problematic - "Return to the signed permit area" means what? Driving through the area? And the words "after parking for any time period" would theoretically catch someone parking for a couple of minutes for an errand, moving half a mile, and parking again for a couple of minutes.

I'd bet there could be an ADA issue with this, if someone pushed it.

If the law says two hours, then it should be two hours in that spot. If you move the car, you reset the clock to zero. And this is easily enforced if they're already going to the trouble of recording license numbers - simply record the parking space it's sitting in as well.

All we need to enforce the intent of the law is 16.20.860 (C)(1).

Great thread title.

Re: "(My spouse was not amused that the stickers didn't get stuck on the plates.)"

Bishop,

If you re-registered the vehicle and obtained the stickers prior to the ticketing, perhaps you can appeal the fine on the grounds that persistent rain prevented you from affixing the stickers to the plates? As the pleasant DMV employee who took my $124 for two tiny stickers admonished: Make sure the plates are dry when you attach the stickers.

Domestic tranquility is of the utmost importance during this desperate era.

Mister Tee said: Alternately, I can pay quite a bit of Washington Sales Tax before exceeding the new price of a City of Portland parking ticket.

Why would you pay WA sales tax? Almost anywhere you shop you can just show your Oregon drivers license and they won't charge you tax. (They do still charge tax on alcohol from what I have been told.)

And if you buy your gas while you are in Vancouver you won't be supporting the wasteful spending of gas tax in Portland.

Portland: The City That Hates You

Great title!

They must have workshops to indoctrinate that kind of behavior towards the people,
all for the good of??

Nobody:
Unless Mt. Tabor erupts and covers the entirety of the east side in lava, there's no way that either suburb, or both combined, will be larger than Portland in the next 30 years.

TOJ: Mt. Tabor isn't going to erupt. The city has an ordinance against that. And any lava flow would be subject to the Bureau of Transportation's regulations about illegal paving.

So we're covered there. Somebody's gonna pay.

Maddening. I got a $55 ticket downtown the other day for having my front plate in the dashboard, instead of attached to the bumper plate.

I mean, WTF? It's perfectly fine for low-IQ deadbeats to have a "slumber party" at City Hall and constantly annoy the sh*t out of me and other people who work downtown, but, oh my, I had the audacity -- on an effing SUNDAY afternoon at that -- to not have my front plate displayed "properly."

To hell with these insufferable c*nt monsters. I'm beyond annoyed.

Nobody:

Don't be fooled that Hillsboro is only 93,000 or whatever number of residents it is today.

Cities are amazingly able to grow if they want. Hillsboro has plenty of land to grow north and west...and there's always the potential of annexation - it could annex Aloha (which would be relatively easy)...it could take over Cornelius (not a far shot, Cornelius has already said they might not be able to continue existence as a city)...it could grow south to Scholls.

It could of course grow up.

In 1970 when Tualatin had just 700 residents, nobody thought it'd go beyond that; today it's 30,000. Who would have thought that Bend would have gone from 17,263 in 1980 (not much larger than McMinnville) to 76,639 30 years later (as large as Beaverton)? Redmond, Washington went from 1,426 in 1960 to 54,144 in 50 years.

I doubt personally that Hillsboro will exceed Portland...but then again, Vancouver was once the largest settlement around here back when Portland was nothing but low-lying marshland and lakes. Then a bunch of fools decimated all of that pristine wildlife habitat, dumped who-knows-what into the Willamette River, built a shantytown that was replaced with docks, and then a seawall...filled in several lakes and permanently covered up Balch Creek...and now call it the "Greenest City in America".

Rarely does our city rise to the level of inanity shown here. This topic would make a great subject for a Portlandia bit!

Agree with everyone who has said this is one of the most preposterous rules ever. Talk about self defeating for a city to kick people out of zones where they might, you know, buy stuff.

Jack, These zones have been in place and enforced this way for many years. The reader who sent this in is just upset they got caught. Where on a red light does it say to "stop"?

Re: "Where on a red light does it say to 'stop'?"

Actually, PdxBug, in OR, unlike virtually all other states and commonwealths, you are supposed to stop on a yellow light.

I'd advise "look it up," but it's not in the DMV's Driver's Manual.
The judge will even tell you that, before apologizing for not being able to do much about a $234 ticket.

The legislature passed that law somewhat recently.

One pickpocket racket after another.
Wouldn't have to be so desperate to do this to citizens if they had just taken care of basics and hadn't gone off the deep end with pet projects. It is obvious they are not working for us. Why do WE pay their salaries?

Oh I get the message loud and clear.

The city loves and needs the increasing amounts of money that I am required to fork over, but they otherwise sneer at my continued existence and non-conforming world view.

No longer. I (and other citizens like me) are fed up, and outta here. Who will replace me? There are only so many tourists ... and they took MAX, so it'll be difficult to give them a parking ticket.

I know, raise the hotel tax again. And make sure the visitors don't camp out.

"Portland -- If Your Kink Is Not Forbidden, Then It's Mandatory!"

Gardiner Menefree,

You're right about yellows. A few years back I was stopped on Southeast Belmont Street just east of 39th Avenue (can't call it that other name, sorry).

My crime? I was in the intersection when the light was yellow. It had just turned as I was entering, so I figured it was safer to go through than slam on the brakes and risk getting rear-ended. The cop sounded empathetic but cited me anyway for $164 (then, sure it's more now)

Iced Borscht,

This steams me, here is some ammo for your court case:

16.20.120-r: “It is unlawful to park or stop a vehicle that is required by law to display two registration plates if a plate is not displayed on the front and the rear of the vehicle.”

1) You had a license plate clearly visible in the front window at the time of the citation. The code does not say where on the front of the vehicle (though the comments on the citation implies that it does).The relevant statute referred to in the city code (“required by law”) is ORS 803.540, part of the Oregon Vehicle Code.
2) ORS 803.540 defines "operating" to involve movement. Parked cars aren't moving. When the meter reader tags the parked car, it isn't being operated and it isn't in violation of the statute. The law does not require plates on parked cars at all so there is no way my car could be in violation of 12.20.120 since the city parking code requires a violation of law.
3) Even though ORS 803.540 does not require plates on parked vehicles, ORS 803.540 (b) & (c) state that a plate must be displayed in plain view to the public from both front and back. Yours were.

For reference:
803.540 Failure to display plates; exceptions; penalty. (1) A person commits the offense of failure to display registration plates if the person operates, on the highways of this state, any vehicle or camper that has been assigned registration plates by this state and the registration plates assigned to the vehicle or camper are displayed in a manner that violates any of the following:
(a) The plate must be displayed on the rear of the vehicle, if only one plate is required.
(b) Plates must be displayed on the front and rear of the vehicle if two plates are required.
(c) The plates must be in plain view and so as to be read easily by the public.
(d) The plate must not be any plate that does not entitle the holder thereof to operate the vehicle upon the highways.

Whoa! Amazing. Thanks, John!


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