Portland’s failure to learn from the 2021 heat dome

Portland set a new record for the city’s longest heat wave last week: we experienced seven consecutive days with recorded temperatures at or above 95° Fahrenheit from Monday, July 25 to Sunday, July 31. The State of Oregon is currently reporting at least 15 related deaths, with at least seven deaths in Multnomah County alone. That number is… Continue reading Portland’s failure to learn from the 2021 heat dome

July State of the Ballot

This month has been busy, politically speaking. Lift Every Voice Oregon collected enough signatures to put gun control on the November ballot, the Oregon Secretary of State ordered an extensive audit of Clackamas County’s primary votes, and the U.S. Supreme Court handed down enough decisions to fill a book. It’s a good time to check in on what… Continue reading July State of the Ballot

PPB’s directives up for feedback, closing Friday, July 15

The Portland Police Bureau has SIX directives with public comment periods ending tomorrow, Friday, July 15. Another closes on Saturday, July 16. These policy changes may not represent real change in the department, but they are an opportunity to look at how PPB thinks about force and speak out about the consequences of PPB’s actions. Before we… Continue reading PPB’s directives up for feedback, closing Friday, July 15

Impending deadline for ballot petitions

Voters in Oregon can send initiatives to the ballot without going through the state legislature, a county commission or a city council. Instead, someone wanting to propose a change to existing laws can collect signatures to send a measure directly to voters. The deadlines to collect those signatures for the upcoming general election are fast approaching: July… Continue reading Impending deadline for ballot petitions

What’s next in the Portland City Charter Review Process

The City of Portland convened a charter review commission to update the city charter in 2020. The charter is the document empowers city officials to do their work and outlines what that work should be. On June 14, the charter review commission voted to send a single ballot measure to voters that includes three major changes to local government:… Continue reading What’s next in the Portland City Charter Review Process

Defund the narrative

The “Portland Police have been defunded!” talking point is really absurd and needs to stop The title of this piece gives away the game, I guess. But it’s a really silly game. The “defund” narrative has been used to attack or support various political candidates, characterize the residents of Portland in the national press, and… Continue reading Defund the narrative

Primary Ballot Review: How Metro fits into Portland politics

If you live in Clackamas, Multnomah, and Washington Counties, you have something on your ballot that no one else in the U.S. has — a directly elected regional government in the form of Metro. Metro is also the only directly elected metropolitan planning organization in the U.S. While knowing our local government is unique can make… Continue reading Primary Ballot Review: How Metro fits into Portland politics

Primary Ballot Review: Why do auditors matter?

There are a ton of candidates for various auditor positions on the primary ballot: Metro Brian Evans — Brian Evans has served as Metro Auditor since his election in 2014. He joined the Metro Auditor’s office as an employee in 2008. Evans is running unopposed and does not appear to have a campaign website. Multnomah County Jennifer McGuirk — Jennifer… Continue reading Primary Ballot Review: Why do auditors matter?

Voters’ Guide — May 2022 Election

If you’re a voter in or around Portland, you may have already received your ballot for the May election. If you’re ready to sit down and vote, here are some recommendations on candidates and ballot measures. This guide is intentionally surface-level: over the election period, I’ll be publishing articles on specific races and issues that… Continue reading Voters’ Guide — May 2022 Election

Calendar: April 20 to April 27

In last week’s calendar, I noted that the mask mandate for TriMet (along with all other public transportation) was expected to end on April 18, but had been extended until May. However, a federal district judge ruled that the mandate was not necessary on Tuesday, effectively ending it immediately. TriMet has dropped its requirement that riders wear… Continue reading Calendar: April 20 to April 27