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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on January 15, 2013 7:48 AM. The previous post in this blog was On the edge. The next post in this blog is How can I miss you when you won't go away?. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



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E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The blind leading the blind

It's amazing that this report from the City of Portland shows a seven-person lobbying staff on its payroll. They probably have outside consultants that they quietly pay, too. And when these folks go down to lobby in Salem, they push for a lot of stuff that either isn't really the city's business, or is the city's business and the city's getting it wrong. Just a few examples:

There are sizable water infrastructure needs in rural Oregon with many communities unable to finance necessary upgrades and maintenance. The City of Portland supports assistance that helps rural communities access and deliver clean water.

Other than cooking up some more pork for Admiral Randy's cozy consultant pals, why is Portland spending money advocating for rural communities?

Additionally, the City supports efforts to remove preemptions on local government authority, such as allowing greater autonomy in day-to-day operations or increased authority to levy taxes or fees.

Examples of existing statutory preemptions include prohibitions on local authority to:

• Levy taxes on alcohol and tobacco products; and

• Establish a city vehicle registration fee.

More nickels and dimes. Always more nickels and dimes.


Oppose legislation that would financially weaken or reduce the City’s ability to use urban renewal statutes as a tool for redevelopment and neighborhood improvement.


Urban renewal programs rely on tax increment financing, which is essential for the City of Portland to achieve outcomes in adopted strategies for economic development and affordable housing. Tax increment financing currently comprises nearly 90 percent of the Portland Development Commission budget and the resources are essential to continue the City’s pursuit of an aggressive strategy to create one of the world’s most desirable and equitable cities by investing in job creation, innovation, affordable housing, and economic opportunity throughout Portland....

The City of Portland values urban renewal as a critical tool for affordable housing, neighborhood improvement, and economic development and would actively oppose any legislation to its detriment.

Translation: The developers and construction guys need new yachts. And is somebody actually proposing "legislation to its detriment"? We can only hope.

Anyway, Portland City Hall and the Oregon state legislature make quite a pair to draw to. Although without the involvement of Jefferson Smith, we don't know how either can be expected to function effectively.

Comments (15)

"... create one of the world’s most desirable and equitable cities...

That degree in Russian Studies comes in handier & handier: Reference: Five-Year Plans and their notorious ludicrous grandiosity. Substitute: unattainable for sustainable.

One might even imagine a smidge of corrupt kleptocracy.

Clackamas County staff put the same thing on their lobbying agenda

It's all here and will be discussed today.

"Local Control & Preemption
Objective: Oppose efforts to restrict local government authority and preempt local tax and fee sources.
Issue: Local control allows counties to design, fund, and implement programs based on locally determined needs and priorities. By bringing the delivery system for state programs to the County level, local government is able to respond to the unique needs of their communities.
Clackamas County supports local control over the design and funding of these programs and opposes efforts to preempt local fee and taxing authority"

Besides staff calling the shots this strikes me as troubling. The County Government, servants of the people, blindly opposes any effort by the people to restrict their authority?

So if the citizenry were attempting to get their legislators to pass a bill restricting some local fee or taxing authority the local county government would oppose it out of hand?

Another red flag is the expectation that the county will lobby to support regional federal transportation funding. Sure we can always use more money but staff wrote it up without mention of Portand-Milwaukie Light Rail that is certainly part of this year's requested fed funding. It may be the biggest chunk. There was an election with the two Light Rail supporters thrown out of office.

Here's how staff presented the agenda item.

"Transportation Reauthorization
Objective: Advocate for passage of a surface transportation authorization bill that adequately funds federal transportation programs in order to improve the reliability and safety of our transportation system, meet the needs of our interconnected economy, and provide stable funding for the maintenance of county roads."

Should Clackamas County support funding for light rail they did not want?

Or should they oppose the reauthorization and lobby for reduced funding for PMLR to force TriMet to pull back to Tacoma Street.

There's some pretty disturbing items in this document and I only read part way through it. For instance changing the State Constitution to allow taxes to be levied against fair market value rather than assessed value.

I'm guessing everything in their agenda comes with a hefty price tag.

Next they'll be wanting to amend the state constitution to move the capitol from Vichy to P..., oops, I meant Salem to Portland.

It seems that CoP, Clackamas Co. and other statewide counties and cities are in the illegal realm that officials of PPS exhibited when they used taxpayer dollars to campaign for recent building bonds.

It is time to legally challenge these lobbying efforts where they are contrary to any city, county and state legislative process that has allowed proper citizen input. For example when has CoP developed any legal basis to state that "Portland supports assistance that helps rural communities access and deliver clean water."?

Holy Smokes, these guys are really getting aggressive now. Here is just a sample.

They want to amend the constitution to get more revenue from property taxes, as if we aren't paying too much already.

They want to restrict gun ownership, to be more like Chicago (which has 5 times the national average of homicides and one of the most restricted gun laws in the USA).

They also want to start taking water from the Willamette for drinking!

If the City of Portland was truly in “pursuit of an aggressive strategy to create one of the world’s most desirable and equitable cities”; lobby efforts would include the authority to implement bicycle registration and user fees to pay for bicycle infrastructure. Instead, the city continues lobby for more taxes from the people who already pay their share or more such as with wanting the authority to “Establish a city vehicle registration fee”. The City’s undisclosed and actual strategy is to create one of the world’s most socially engineered cities! It is all about dictating to the people and chipping away at our freedoms instead of governance that is of the people, by the people and for the people.

Y'know...before the passage of the "Property Tax Limitation" ballot measure, the infamous Ballot Measure 5, we had significantly less in the way of nickel and dime revenue raisers. This attribute of proliferating "user fee" financing is a direct result of the property tax limitation and was clearly predicted at the time of the ballot measure.

If we would enact a homestead exemption, we could discard the whole dysfunctional "property tax limitation" hooey. Of course, we would need to enforce thrift and parsimony upon our local elected officials, that will ever happen.

Multnomah county just broke the $100 million/yr mark in property taxes diverted to cronies.

Page 63 of the latest TSCC report has a bar graph with the history of money fed to Urban Renewal -- $115 million total, with $101 million being diverted from government services (schools, social services, fire and police) and $14 million came from a "special levy"

see See PDF pages 60-81.


godfry: we would need to enforce thrift and parsimony upon our local elected officials, that will ever happen.
JK: Good point. How do we force these clowns to just run the city, not rebuild it in some planner’s wet dream of socialist utopia?


Where'd you get that logo?

Too funny!

• Establish a city vehicle registration fee.

Wow! Who would have thought they would come up with this?
Does this include bicycles?
Is there a limit on fee increases or are they going for the moon?

Construction of County Courthouses
Support issuing state bonds to help Oregon counties, including Multnomah County, build new courthouses.
Access to justice is fundamental to democracy.

So our city council is so concerned about democracy?
At this point, I see this as another avenue to send dollars to developers.
I would rather have true justice and democracy if need be held in a barn than in a fancy new Leed polished building filled with any “make pretend” democracy and hypocrisy such as what we have had to endure here in our city council chambers and beyond.
I think our city needs to cleanse their own chambers holding “democracy” instead of running down to Salem for more buildings. It is up to the individual communities of Oregon and their elected legislators to determine courthouse needs and bonds without the City of Portland sticking their noses in it.

Sure, CoP is concerned about Curry County's courthouse. What a self serving statement.


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In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
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Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
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

The Occasional Book

Marc Maron - Waiting for the Punch
Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
Ruth Sepetys - Between Shades of Gray
Richard Adams - Watership Down
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
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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: 5
At this date last year: 3
Total run in 2017: 113
In 2016: 155
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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