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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Portland Business Alliance: "City Must Seek and Apply Other Tools" to Oust Old Town Tent Refuge

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Wed, Dec 12, 2012 at 3:14 PM

Now that a lawsuit has been filed over months of code violation fines, Portland City Hall can no longer talk openly about Right 2 Dream Too—the well-managed rest area for the homeless leasing a lot at the highly visible corner of NW 4th and Burnside.

That doesn't apply to the Portland Business Alliance, which remains bitterly opposed to the presence of the camp and, according to lobbying reports regularly reminds city commissioners of that fact. The PBA is so bitterly opposed, in fact, that in a recent letter urging Mayor Sam Adams and Commissioner Dan Saltzman to crack down on the tent refuge, it couldn't even bring itself to print R2DToo's name.

The letter (PDF) was sent Tuesday, a day after R2DToo filed its lawsuit. The Mercury obtained it through a public records request. And besides using phrases like "illegal camp" and "illegal encampment," the letter doesn't mince words about whom the PBA is fighting for.

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It calls for the city, since its "current fine-based remedy does not appear to be having an effect," to "seek and apply other tools at its disposal" to persuade R2DToo and its landlords to "comply with city law." But later, the PBA minces only slightly its words about who ought to be handling this issue instead of the Bureau of Development Services: the Portland Police Bureau.

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At least I assume that's what Sandy McDonough means by "appropriate."

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