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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Thank you, Bruce Hanna

At last report the daffy Oregon "sustainability center" -- a multi-million-dollar "green" boondoggle to provide welfare for Portland developer Mark Edlen and his pals -- is on the rocks in Salem. Apparently House co-speaker Bruce Hanna of Roseburg, a Republican, is unilaterally holding off the prospect of issuing state bonds to pay for the thing. And without the state money, the project is going nowhere. Those of us who are tired of shelling out property taxes for schlock owe him a debt of gratitude.

We're as earth-friendly as the next guy or gal, but this is nothing but a pile of steaming government pork for a chosen few. The liars' budget is $67 million, but any honest assessment of the costs would be pushing nine figures. And what would all that money prove? It would merely demonstrate that ├╝ber-"green" construction makes no economic sense. The only tenants would be smug, earnest government employees, making it a straight-up taxpayer-funded palace of bureaucracy.

Of course, it is one of those zombie projects, like the infernal Convention Center hotel, that will come back again and again, but if it doesn't make it through this week in Salem, it will be dead until after the Sam Rand Twins have left the City Hall scene at year-end. Maybe the next City Council will sober up and let it sleep. Probably not, but Hanna keeps our hope alive.

Comments (22)

Agreed. But,"Skimmers" will always find rubes to fleece and there is no short supply of those in Portland.

Lets relocate the project to somewhere near the far end of the Mt. Hood Freeway.

"The only tenants would be smug, earnest government employees, making it a straight-up taxpayer-funded palace of bureaucracy."

...but that's the only amusing part of the project. Sponsors admit that 30% of the planned building savings come from "changes in tenant behavior", who are going to be continually "challenged" to reduce their energy and water consumption.

I can think of no group of people more worthy than the CoP "Bureau of Planning and Sustainability" to work in a building with limitations on elevator and bathroom usage, that deliberately will be inadequately lit, heated, and cooled. For once the bureaucrats would have to work in their own fouled nest.

Representative Hanna is an example to everyone else in state and national politics. If only we had a few like him here in Texas, instead of the "privatize the profit and socialize the risk" goons that keep pitching our own unbearable crosses so Ray Hunt and other vermin can make a few more million dollars at the public trough.

Portland State University will not let this project die. Next Mayor will get a visit a short while after taking office.

But I am happy Mayor Adams goes away without another rube like feather in his cap.

See! Some of the GOP can actually live up to the tattered party fiscal responsibility brand. The Bushs sure blew a hole in this brand.

Thank Goodness! for now.
But the zombie projects never go away. "Thriller" should be the local theme song!

The Oregonian didn't finish Sam's Amy Ruiz's quote:

"Our team is working hard. We think we've found the linchpin word to successfully see this building to proceed...'Safety'".

Next Mayor will get a visit a short while after taking office.

I am looking forward to a next Mayor who will take a serious look at this close relationship to PSU. I have written before I see an unhealthy relationship here, my point is that a University should be independent in thinking, not somehow locked in with the city agenda.

I do not have time to go into all of this, research necessary, etc. perhaps others on the blog know more, but I sense PSU area is being used for development purposes. I would like to know of the money being budgeted for city programs towards PSU endeavors.

I wrote to Hanna's office and thanked him for not supporting the Sustainability boondoggle. Write to people in Salem and let them know - they need to hear from us that we don't want it!!!

Awesome. This project made about as much economic sense as Ma Chalmer's Grapefruit Diet.

By the time we have a new mayor, I halfway hope that the city and state will have already admitted to being too broke to borrow yet more money for stupid pork.

Had it gone forward, they would have found that even starry-eyed eco-greenie NGO employees like to be able to flush the toilet once in a while. There, gave it to you for free.

Amen! I love, LOVE this project, truly, but only privately developed. No public money.

Hanna for Governor!

I sent off an E mail to Sen. Dick Devlin, in who's district I reside, requesting he reconsider hois "love affair" with this idiocy after the story was first posted on the O's E site last evening.

Curiously, no response from my state senator.

Go figure.

Build it in Seattle; they can afford it.

Insane this was even being considered in this state budget cycle. Thank God for a hard-won split house.

Indeed, thanks to Hanna and any others in the legislature not afraid to sound a voice of sanity and stand in the way of ill-begotten schemes.

But at this very moment the starry-eyed cultists in city hall and their grafter accomplices in the private sector are probably looking desperately for some way legally to rob us at gunpoint and tell us it makes us safer.

Is everyone missing the obvious? It's about the unions.

Oddly, I agree with Huck. Privately done, it'd be an interesting trial of a theoretical concept. But not one thin dime of taxpayer money should go to it.

Huck and Max are right. The outrage isn't whether or not an outrageously expensive experimental building ought to be built, it's over the idea of it being built with public funds, especially in times when so many critical public services are being slashed for "lack of funds".

What's hilarious and sad at the same time is that the proposed Sustainable Center isn't even experimental, innovative, a first timer as Huck and Devlin contend.

There are over 7 buildings around the world that have been built similar to this. And after close study these buildings have many interesting failures. I get a kick out of the local Planners, Pols, Bureaucrats contending that Portland will be the "leader" if this is built. Too late, and we can't afford it.

Sorry, Huck, Max and Mr. Grumpy forget that private money can build an outrageously expensive building without spending a dime of public funds on it and then turn around and lease space to public entities at outrageously expensive rates.

In the end, NO for-profit entity is going to take that kind of risk without having pre-leased the space. And who else would rent at unaffordable prices except entities that don't have to make a profit because they know they will never go out of business? There are a zillion ways to take our money and spend it foolishly.

Nolo, I would extend my "no public money" to a lease to a public outfit. I disagree, though, that no for-profit would lease such a space, or build it. Lots of corporations blow serious coin, going WAY over the top, on their headquarters.

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