Net Neutrality is Dead: In a long-foreshadowed split decision, the FCC voted 3-2 yesterday to repeal rules preventing Internet service providers from picking favorites. It's probably not going to be good (though lawsuits are expected on behalf of Oregon and other states). "Want to access Facebook and Twitter? Under a bundling system, getting on those sites could require paying for a premium social media package."
The net neutrality repeal was ushered forth by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, a Trump appointee. Here's Pai appearing with staffers from the hard-right Daily Caller—including a Pizzagate conspiracy theorist—to gloat over his forthcoming victory. Cool.
Eighty people died on the streets of Portland last year, a number that would have been unthinkable as recently as 2014, and which reveals how critical the city's homeless crisis continues to be. The tally comes from the Domicile Unknown report that Multnomah County releases on a yearly basis.
Turns out the city isn't going to launch an investigation into serious allegations against former Mayor Sam Adams that emerged last month. City Attorney Tracy Reeve tells the Mercury that Adams' accuser, Cevero Gonzalez, declined to meet with city officials about his allegations. She also says the city no longer has authority to call Adams to account if they're true.
Republicans could introduce the latest version of their tax plan today, but they're scrambling to find places to slash spending and pay for steep corporate tax cuts they've been fetishizing. As the NYT explains, "many of the changes made to assuage the concerns of businesses and Republican lawmakers are expected to drive up the cost of the bill and will need to be paid for to ensure the legislation does not add more than $1.5 trillion to the deficit over a decade." Depending on where Republicans find savings, support in the Senate could be tricky.
Interestingly, the O was able to get Congressman Greg Walden's office to actually talk about his support for the bill. Last month, we hounded Walden, Oregon's lone Republican member of Congress, to explain his support for an earlier House bill that would have decimated affordable housing. Walden's folks wouldn't get back to us (or his concerned constituents), but he now claims to have been fighting to claw back money for affordable housing.
The O has a long, interesting piece on the state agency that regulates and licenses cops. The investigation shows that the department refuses to strip cops of the ability to keep working even after they're fired for egregious offenses. That means they can be hired elsewhere. The crux: "State law says the department must decertify anyone fired for cause. Yet the department interprets 'for cause' so narrowly that 57 percent of fired officers stayed eligible to carry a gun and a badge elsewhere in Oregon." It's worth your time.
A grand jury has found a Portland police officer had every right to shoot an unarmed Black man suspected in a bank robbery in October. Cops have said 25-year-old Chase Peeples reached into his pocket when confronted by officers. Portland Officer Ryan Reagan fired six shots, striking the unarmed Peeples three times. He survived his injuries.
Happy Trails, Spencer: Spencer Raymond, the former OPB announcer who quit his job to run for city council, but faced immediate backlash (and Internet pranks) from people who thought an inexperienced white man shouldn't be running against three women of color, has dropped out of the race, Willamette Week reports. And so ends one of the more bizarre campaigns I've experienced. You will never see a long-shot candidate so studiously avoid talking to reporters. It was impressive.
Paul Ryan might retire next year.
21st Century Fox and Disney have merged, though Fox News is left to be its own spiteful self. Expect federal regulators to try to dash the deal to pieces.
Portland's spending more of the $258.4 million housing bond voters approved last year. Mayor Ted Wheeler's office announced yesterday it'll use bond money to help build between 200 and 300 units of affordable housing at the site of the former Safari Club (RIP) on Southeast Powell. Though the bond was passed last November, it wasn't until October of this year that the city developed a strategy for spending it.