Mayor Sam Adams was conspicuously absent from Senator Ron Wyden's Monday announcement of Oregon's portion of the $780 billion federal stimulus package just passed by congress. The gathering—which included Adams' council colleagues Randy Leonard and Nick Fish—was also officially attended by Portland's top power brokers. Wyden said the package's investment in tax provisions, roads, bridges and transportation, energy, and healthcare meant Oregon would be able to "focus like a laser beam on our ailing economy."
"I felt Nick and Randy spoke very well on city interests," said Wyden, when asked to explain Adams' absence. "I just want to keep the focus on the economy, and I don't want anything to distract from that." Was it fair to say that Adams had been uninvited? "We need to go," said a Wyden staffer, interrupting Wyden's, "No...." "Thank you," added the staffer, before moving the senator along. MATT DAVIS
As if being thrown in jail and facing potential court sanctions weren't enough, alleged ballot initiative racketeer Bill Sizemore could now face hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines imposed by Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown's office. Brown's office announced last Thursday, February 12, that it has opened an investigation into Sizemore's behavior during the 2008 election. A civil penalty of $10,000 per alleged crooked transaction may be leveled as a result, which means there's a potential for a huge fine against Sizemore.
"Every time you file a campaign report with a dollar amount, that's a transaction," says Brown's spokesperson, Don Hamilton. "This isn't a criminal process, it's a civil process, so it's not like we're indicting him on X many counts, but certainly, most campaign reports contain numerous transactions." MD