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Thursday, October 25, 2012

New Portland water bureau mission: foreclosure enforcement

The admiral and his minions are now boarding up homes for the banks:

The Portland Water Bureau is expected to board up her home today for not having water service, the crowd was told during a 7 a.m. press conference.

Jackson told an estimated 100 supporters outside her 523 Bryant St. home in the Woodlawn community that she has tried to pay a $413 delinquent water bill but the city won't accept the money.

The city won't accept Jackson's money because she's not the legal property owner. "She is, in essence, a squatter," said Water Bureau Administrator David Shaff.

Sixty-seven more days of this. Let's hope Hales changes the tenor of the water bureau substantially. The arrogance of the Admiral and his minions has grown quite tiresome.

Comments (15)

I still think RED HARVEST should be required reading in PPS.

I can go in and pay for a random credit card bill and the banks do not mind. Code requires the water be running to be occupied. Since when is it in their interest to prevent payment on a water bill? Who benefits by that? I only see harm. Bad move PDX.

It used to be Lane Ducks turned populist. When did they go corporate? Is there a revolving door issue here? Do we know Leonard's and Adams's next employers?

My, how time changes people. Just a few years ago, Randy was the guy who would go to bat for his constituents. Like in this article from 2004. In this story Good Guy Randy swoops with an offer to make things better:

Though he doesn't know the entire case history, city Commissioner Randy Leonard, who oversees the Bureau of Development Services, said he might be able to assist the family.

'We would be very open to figuring out a solution to that one,' said his chief of staff, Ty Kovatch.

'That is definitely the kind of circumstance we should be looking for. We should help them out, and not fine them.'

Fast forward eight years and Mean Old Man Randy has become the Mr. Potter of Portland Politics.

Portland is already "Potterville".

It's not her home and she should be put out, but having the water bureau do the dirty work is bonkers.

So according to the Water Bureau, if the landlord doesn't pay, a tenant can't do it either to keep service from being shut off? They're the legal owner either.

Portland = Potterville
Excellent! And sad.

Very curious story. Not sure if it is sloppy reporting, but surely the Bureau accepts payments from non-owners of the property, namely renters.

I wonder what the written policy and laws are on this. I cannot believe they only accept payments from the legal owners.

CM, you bring up a good point. I had a rental house during the water bureau computer fiasco where billing wasn't sent out to my renters for over a year. They moved out and finally the the water bureau sent a bill...to me. I had no knowledge that my renters never paid the bill because they were never billed. Water Bureau demanded payment. Threatened lawsuit. Had a collection agency calling frequently. I kept noting that I had a legal rental contract that stated the renters were liable for the water bill. Find them and collect.

Same scenario happened to a friend with a large apartment complex. I never paid even after the threats and nasty letters. The water bureau does accept bill payment from renters, contrary to their claim. Water bureau should not be the enforcer, but the courts and police should. This does not mean I condone the supposed squatting. Prove it legally, then enforce.

...Good Guy Randy swoops with an offer to make things better: . . .
. . .Fast forward eight years and Mean Old Man Randy has become the Mr. Potter of Portland Politics.

Looks like Good Guy Randy allowed himself to be swept to the other side.
When and Why?
He seems angry and nasty now at some water watchers at city council hearings,
could it be that they are a reminder of how he has betrayed the public?
He keeps repeating he has done everything he could, guess he is trying to convince himself. Too late, Randy. No matter what book you are having the PWB write about you, there will be other books written about the history of your Water Commissioner years.

Funny. As an employee of a REGULATED utility, we are now subject to a new rule that if a tenant-occupied resident whose utility bills go delinquent, we must (upon learning of the situation) notify the tenant, advise them of the unpaid balance, and allow them the opportunity to apply for and place the service in their own name.

And...we'll let anyone pay a bill. We can't say what the balance is (except in certain circumstances like the above), but we'll certainly help you make the payment.

The PUC should have oversight over municipal utilities as well.

It seems like the real reason for the water bureau's different treatment in this situation is her affiliation with the occupy movement, but since the current of racism runs so deep in Portland, I wouldn't be surprised to learn that she was singled out because she's a black woman.

Ha Ha Ha! Get a load of Shaff talking about squatters. Shaff, a lawyer-crony of Hero Randy's, who has no professional credentials to be running a water bureau, has been squatting in his Water-Czar position ever since Hero Randy appointed him (and made him the highest-paid employee of the City).

I spoke w/ the Water Bureau, and the Oregonian completely misreported this story.

I hope they have the decency to post a corrected article.

This statement: "The Portland Water Bureau is expected to board up her home today for not having water service, the crowd was told during a 7 a.m. press conference." is false.

Let's hope Hales changes the tenor of the water bureau substantially.

He may try to "nice" the tune a bit, but I expect very little change from Hales in the action and the pursuit of the PWB plans towards a regional plan and privatization.

Check out HDR, the corporation he worked for, is he still?
He was in the transportation division to sell street cars, etc., but people need to know that HDR has a huge water division and are very big on water.

In my opinion, who better placed to open the door on our water for them than Hales?
He has already telegraphed that it was fine for the council to decide on fluoride for us for public health purposes. What else would he feel he is entitled to do for our good whether we want it or not? I observed him to do what he pleased, be damn with the public, and he did it with ease. I find it interesting that despite the 43,000 signatures within the 30 days, both Hales and Jefferson are still saying they want fluoride. There seems to be no heed about the signatures or we will wait and see until the people vote, the message is they want it, never mind the public had already voted it down in the past. Apparently, these two don't have to care, they know the machinery here is in charge, not the people they are supposed to represent.

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