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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on September 4, 2012 7:46 AM. The previous post in this blog was Livin' just enough, just enough for the suburbs. The next post in this blog is Mayor Creepy's latest delusion. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



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Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Showdown in Clackistan

The war between the rogue county commission and the Clackistani rebels winds up, as we suspected it would, in a courtroom this afternoon. At issue is the commission's attempt to rush through, without the normal public process, a $20 million bond sale to raise money to hand over to Tri-Met for the insane Mystery Train to Milwaukie. The county's theory of how it is legally able to do this seems preposterous to us -- if it's right, then contrary to common belief, voters have virtually no say on public debt issues in Oregon -- but we're not the judge. Moreover, there are always procedural objections that the county might make, and it's anybody's guess what they might be.

One thing seems certain: If the bonds don't get sold in time to get the money to Tri-Met by two weeks from today, it may never get paid. The outrage against the commissioners has never been hotter, and the initiative designed to prevent the county from funding the project seems likely to pass when the votes are counted on the 18th.

We wonder whether prospective buyers of the bonds -- and Moody's, which secretly rated the bonds before the single public hearing on the borrowing -- are going to be informed of the brouhaha. They're supposed to be appraised of all the material facts surrounding the paper, but materiality is sometimes in eye of the beholder.

In any event, today could well be a historic day for the county and the region.

Comments (19)

I have a hunch the Feds have (off the record) told the Commissioners that funding of future projects is in jeopardy if they don’t help TriMet with their train today. Yes, they do that.

You'd never know it if you got information only here, but there seem to be some people who actually want the Milwaukie light rail, and even some among them who are affectedClackamas County taxpayers. A look at rush hour traffic on McLoughlin Boulevard could explain some of that. Not living out that way, I really don't have any prospect of benefit from it. But it does seem to me that, unlike the buried reservoirs, a rail installation gives us something for the money besides just a new set of problems.

Allan, regardless of the merit (or lack thereof) of a light rail line to Milwaukee I would hope you support the idea of government following the law.
The last thing we need is a group of people deciding that "they" know better than the common folk what is good for the common folk.

Those people who do want the train should be happy a vote can take place to voice their support.


This scandal is not about traffic or the many notions light rail supporters like to pump out.

Besides your ridiculous presumption that some only get their information here and that anyone would not have looked at or considered traffic you appear to be unaware of the rampant public deceit by the pushers of these debacles.

Their embellishment of traffic and the farce that Light Rail or Streetcars will reduce it is legend.

Over and over again critics have pointed out the flaws and deiberate misrepresentations with Metro's traffic claims and TriMet's phony claims of remedies.

McLoughlin traffic is not all that bad to begin with.
The occasional short lived rush hour traffic on McLoughlin is primarily at northern, Portland end and will not see any relief with PMLR.

The fact that some people "actually want the Milwaukie light rail" is entirely irrelevant.
However, it is good to see you attributing some of that minority fringe support to their confused belief it will reduce congestion on McLoughlin.
That is as wrong as the pitch that the LO streetcar would reduced the inflated congestion on 43.

If you think this concocted "benefit for the money" is reason enough to ignore the "new set of problems",the scurrilous
behavior by government officials & the prohibiting of a public vote then you are mighty short on information, wherever you get it.

Yeah. All 129 of them...

Mostly commenters here prefer a kind of echo chamber where everyone has the same views, so I'm sorry to be disturbing anyone's post-breakfast digestion. I agree with tankfixer's suggestion that the government should follow the law and respect processes that are designed to protect opportunities for public input. It's good that some judge is going to have an opportunity to look at that in the context of the county's proposed bond issue.

At the same time, the idea of having voters manage the government through successive initiatives and referenda is expensive, impractical and too heavily weighted toward negative outcomes. I'm not a Clackamas County voter but, having looked at the full text of 3-401, I would almost certainly oppose it, just as I would almost certainly vote to throw out the Commissioners who have worked so hard to neutralize the election's anticipated results.

I hope the hardware stores in Clackamas county have enough pitchforks, tar and feathers to enable us to run these Commissioners outta town in the style they deserve.

"the idea of having voters manage the government through successive initiatives and referenda is expensive"

You've made the assumption that they'd have to ask voters on spending every $0.01 - Which is not accurate at all. I see this as no different than voting on a school bond or adding property to the taxbase (you know those 1 acre things that show up when a city wants to expand?)

This measure is concerning light rail only and asking commissioners to come in and ask for one big number up front. If nothing else, it's a referendum.

Who knows? Maybe it will fail, then again maybe it will pass and they'll treat it like METRO did on the NO vote on the convention center.

BTW - If you like traffic, vote NO on 3-401. If you don't like traffic, vote YES on 3-401 (to paraphrase and expand the road signs.)

Is it your intention to bring here every false bromide being coughed up by the light rail supporters who don't like voting?
While also misrepresenting commenters here?

It's preposterous to suggest "Mostly commenters here prefer a kind of echo chamber where everyone has the same views".
So that was BS.

The county commissioners and TriMet are opposed to any public action or courtroom scrutiny that may require them to follow the law and respect processes that are designed to protect opportunities for public input.

Then you bring the tired farce about voting on everything.
There is no such effort, agenda, group, intention or objective by anyone to have voters "manage the government through successive initiatives and referenda".

That is one of the worst claims by initiative opponents.

So there is nothing to that claim or any potential for the red herring "expensive, impractical and too heavily weighted toward negative outcomes."

Are we to be impressed that YOU have "looked at the full text of 3-401"? As if supporters and their lawyers haven't?

Your naive opposition to it is obviously from all the horribles ginned up by the opposition.
Most of which have been settled as nonsensical.
Such as the false claim law enforcement would be prohibited from responding to incidents involving any rail.

You must be smarter than the Sheriff who endorses it?

So what is your opposition based upon?

You can read the Lawyer's statement on page 9 of the voter's pamphlet statement .

Speaking of traffic on SE McLoughlin, I have been commuting the same route down I-5 to the 99E-McLoughlin exit to SE Portland for nearly 20 years now, and over the years it's slowly gotten a little worse.

BUT, about the same time the viaduct replacement project was completed about 2 months ago, nearly every single evening much of it is now just a parking lot for miles, and there isn't any more construction.

What happened? "Traffic planning?"

And the streetcar isn't even running down MLK yet.

You know perhaps it is a good idea for the voters to approve every single penny spent, at least for a while.
Recall when you were young and your parents trusted you to spend your allowance wisely ?
But instead of saving a little you splurged on so much candy you got sick ?
Many government bodies are at that point, they have splurged with the money the public entrusted to them and it's time to put them in a time out, withhold their allowance and let them grow up a tiny bit.

I thought Oregon was unique in that it was founded on the notion of an initiative-based government.
What strikes me as profound is the fairly recent crop of politicians who want instead to act like powerful rulers and do as they see fit (and have privately pre-arranged).

I think Abe hit the nail squarely on the head. And the current federal government is quite capable of punishing those who aren't on their team. Ask any former car dealer.

So when do we get to hear how things went in court today?

The judge denied the writ on procedural grounds.
The merits were not adjudicated.
More action coming.

In judge's opinion announced immediately in an oral ruling from the bench, it wasn't extraordinary enough of a situation to order by a writ of mandamus that the County Commissioners comply with the 60-day notice requirement mandated by Oregon state law. The bond offering stands, for now, but the ballot petitioner separately filed just beforehand for a TRO. The County will probably move the Court to require a $20million+ bond be posted by the petitioner before any TRO to be issued. Should be another hearing asap. Same arguments as today.

Allan L. wrote: some people who actually want the Milwaukie light rail

Great, then they can vote that way if they feel strongly. Or stay home, and accept the outcome. Either way, that's how spending is (or should be) decided in this state.

Personally, I think that $20M is twice wasted, as TriMet probably won't endure long enough to ever run so much as a test train down that line.

Look at how operations are going now. TriMet is barely hanging on by their fingernails. It takes heroic efforts to maintain the illusion of normal scheduled service.

Allan, you certainly can't say that light rail paralleling Hwy 26 or I-5North has appreciably helped congestion. So how does $210 Million per mile for light rail parallel to McLoughlin help when $15 Million per mile would install a more used rapid bus system?


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

In Vino Veritas

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
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2012
Decoy, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Marqués de Murrieta, Reserva Rioja 2010
Kendall-Jackson, Grand Reserve Cabernet 2009
Seven Hills, Merlot 2013
Los Vascos, Grande Reserve Cabernet 2011
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Forlorn Hope, St. Laurent, Ost-Intrigen 2013
Upper Five, Tempranillo 2010 and 2012
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Topsail, Syrah 2013
Jim Barry, The Lodge Hill Shiraz 2013
Robert Mondavi, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2012
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2014
Boomtown, Cabernet 2013
Boulay, Sauvignon Blanc 2014
Domaine de Durban Muscat 2011
Patricia Green, Estate Pinot Noir 2012
Crios, Cabernet, Mendoza 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Dehesa la Granja, Tempranillo 2008
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #15
Selvapiana, Chianti Ruffina 2012
Joseph Carr, Cabernet 2012
Prendo, Pinot Grigio, Vigneti Delle Dolomiti 2014
Joel Gott, Oregon Pinot Gris 2014
Otazu, Red 2010
Chehalem, Pinot Gris, Three Vineyards 2013
Wente, Merlot, Sandstone 2011
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2012
Monmousseau, Vouvray 2014
Duriguttti, Malbec 2013
Ruby, Pinot Noir 2012
Castellare, Chianti 2013
Lugana, San Benedetto 2013
Canoe Ridge, Cabernet, Horse Heaven Hills 2011
Arcangelo, Negroamaro Rosato
Vale do Bomfim, Douro 2012
Portuga, Branco 2013
Taylor Fladgate, Late Bottled Vintage Porto 2009
Pete's Mountain, Pinot Noir, Kristina's Reserve 2010
Rodney Strong, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Bookwalter, Subplot No. 28, 2012
Coppola, Sofia, Rose 2014
Kirkland, Napa Cabernet 2012
Trader Joe's Grand Reserve, Napa Meritage 2011
Kramer, Chardonnay Estate 2012
Forlorn Hope, Que Saudade 2013
Ramos, Premium Tinto, Alentejano 2012
Trader Joe's Grand Reserve, Rutherford Cabernet 2012
Bottego Vinaia, Pinot Grigio Trentino 2013
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2011
Pete's Mountain, Elijah's Reserve Cabernet, 2007
Beaulieu, George Latour Cabernet 1998
Januik, Merlot 2011
Torricino, Campania Falanghina 2013
Edmunds St. John, Heart of Gold 2012
Chloe, Pinot Grigio, Valdadige 2013
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir 2013
Kirkland, Pinot Grigio, Friuli 2013
St. Francis, Red Splash 2011
Rodney Strong, Canernet, Alexander Valley 2011
Erath, Pinot Blanc 2013
Taylor Fladgate, Porto 2007
Portuga, Rose 2013
Domaine Digioia-Royer, Chambolle-Musigny, Vielles Vignes Les Premieres 2008
Locations, F Red Blend
El Perro Verde, Rueda 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Indian Wells Red 2010
Chloe, Pinot Grigio, Valdadige 2013
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir 2013
Kirkland, Pinot Grigio, Friuli 2013
St. Francis, Red Splash 2011
Rodney Strong, Canernet, Alexander Valley 2011
Erath, Pinot Blanc 2013
Taylor Fladgate, Porto 2007
Portuga, Rose 2013
Domaine Digioia-Royer, Chambolle-Musigny, Vielles Vignes Les Premieres 2008
Locations, F Red Blend
El Perro Verde, Rueda 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Indian Wells Red 2
If You See Kay, Red 2011
Turnbull, Old Bull Red 2010
Cherry Tart, Cherry Pie Pinot Noir 2012
Trader Joe's Grand Reserve Cabernet, Oakville 2012
Benton Lane, Pinot Gris 2012
Campo Viejo, Rioja, Reserva 2008
Haden Fig, Pinot Noir 2012
Pendulum Red 2011
Vina Real, Plata, Crianza Rioja 2009
Edmunds St. John, Bone/Jolly, Gamay Noir Rose 2013
Bookwalter, Subplot No. 26
Ayna, Tempranillo 2011
Pete's Mountain, Pinot Noir, Haley's Block 2010
Apaltagua, Reserva Camenere 2012
Lugana, San Benedetto 2012
Argyle Brut 2007
Wildewood Pinot Gris 2012
Anciano, Tempranillo Reserva 2007
Santa Rita, Reserva Cabernet 2009
Casone, Toscana 2008
Fonseca Porto, Bin No. 27
Louis Jadot, Pouilly-Fuissé 2011
Trader Joe's, Grower's Reserve Pinot Noir 2012
Zenato, Lugana San Benedetto 2012
Vintjs, Cabernet 2010
14 Hands, Hot to Trot White 2012
Rainstorm, Oregon Pinot Gris 2012
Silver Palm, North Coast Cabernet 2011
Andrew Rich, Gewurtztraminer 2008
Rodney Strong, Charlotte's Home Sauvignon Blanc 2012
Canoe Ridge, Pinot Gris, Expedition 2012
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir Rose 2012
Dark Horse, Big Red Blend No. 01A
Elk Cove, Pinot Noir Rose 2012
Fletcher, Shiraz 2010
Picollo, Gavi 2011
Domaine Eugene Carrel, Jongieux 2012
Eyrie, Pinot Blanc 2010
Atticus, Pinot Noir 2010

The Occasional Book

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: 61
At this date last year: 97
Total run 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

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