THE PORT OF PORTLAND and Portland Business Alliance weren't the only local groups angered when Mayor Charlie Hales pulled his support for a mammoth propane terminal earlier this month. Some of Hales' friends in local unions are upset as well.
"It seems more than a little bit unfair to invite a company to town and welcome them with open arms and not even give them the decency of allowing them to go through the full process," says John Mohlis, executive secretary of the Oregon State Building and Construction Trades Council, which represents 21 unions. Among them: Joint Council of Teamsters Local 37, whose support Hales touted prominently when elected in 2012.
Mohlis says union reps have sent word to Hales' office they're not pleased the mayor won't take up a zoning change that would allow the $500 million terminal proposed by Canadian firm Pembina Pipeline.
That's not to say it won't be considered. On May 22, the Oregonian reported that Commissioner Nick Fish has asked the city attorney's office for clarification on whether Portland City Council must consider the change. Fish tells the Mercury he wants to make sure no one's rights are being violated. DIRK VANDERHART
GOOD NEWS for college students walking alone at night: If it's the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) creeping on you, you'll soon know it.
The OLCC says it plans to require that its liquor inspectors slap magnetic decals on vehicles when patrolling college campuses in the near future. The move—along with a recent decision to force inspectors to wear spiffy new polos emblazoned with the OLCC logo—is a big change for liquor agents who are used to anonymity. Until recently, inspectors were able to fly under the radar, whether walking into a corner store or crawling the streets of Corvallis.
The changes were spurred, in part, by a Lewis and Clark College junior's complaints that she feared she'd be abducted last year when OLCC agents chased her down in an unmarked car ["Drunk on Power?" News, April 15]. DVH
BAD NEWS for East Portland residents looking to change Portland's commission-style government: The city attorney says the proposal's problematic.
After the Portland elections office okayed Collene Swenson's suggested dismantling of Portland City Council as we know it in mid-May ["Who Represents You?" News, May 20], the city attorney worked up ballot language that blew some giant holes in the initiative's verbiage.
According to the attorney's interpretation, Swenson's initiative would render city council impotent during the two-year period between when the measure would take effect and the first year of district elections.
"During [the] interim, council would not have quorum, could not act, pass ordinances, adopt budget, or establish districts," according to the ballot title.
Swenson says she has contacted an attorney to try and get the initiative's language reworked, and may resubmit her initiative. SHELBY R. KING