The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!

The Palms Motel in September 2020.
The Palms Motel in September 2020. Suzette Smith

Good morning, Portland!


• The Palms Motel, which has been leased by the county for most of the pandemic as emergency quarantine housing, may be redeveloped into an apartment complex. Willamette Week reports that the complex could include retail spaces and 223 housing units.

• A group of Northeast Portland tenants are suing their landlord for not keeping their complex in “habitable condition.” The elderly, fixed-income residents say that Reach Community Development has ignored repeated repair requests.

• An $800,000 grant from Portland's Clean Energy Fund allowed the city to provide upgrades to 20 Portland houses, all owned by low income homeowners. The program substantially trims energy bills for its participants, while also working towards a longer term goal of reducing overall consumption.

• Hey to all youz that I see crawling towards summer on your elbows, one of Portland's favorite summer pastimes will soon return. And that pass time is: sitting in a park at dusk, yucking it up. Comedy in the Park's second season begins in July!


• On Tuesday actor Matthew McConaughey made a public appeal for stronger controls on AR-15 rifles, describing parents who had to identify their child by a pair of green Converse shoes because the shooting mutilated her body beyond recognition. Although we're hearing exhaustion from parties who've fought for decades for better background checks, something that feels different about the Uvalde mass murder is that there's an unexpected demand to start showing what guns do to the bodies they mutilate—on Sunday the New York Times ran an opinion piece from Kim Phuc Phan Thi, whose opinion should really matter to us as she is the subject of one of the most famous photos in history.

• Here's one that freelancers have their hair in a high ponytail over, whipping it around like it's "Ring the Alarm." The IRS has a new form—the 1099-K—and she's inviting PayPal, Venmo, etc. transactions to declare gross payments over $600. The cut off used to be $20,000 and that was pretty sweet, but the IRS has an equally high ponytail and, like Ariana Grande they see it, they like it, they want it, they got it (yeah).

• Looking to put off work for a cool and illuminating 20 minutes? I did so myself, saying I'm sure that learning about how TikTok virality directly impacts Spotify listener counts and record contracts counts as work. IS THIS ALSO TANGENTIALLY RELATED TO YOUR JOB? I will testify on your behalf.

• A little bit of Portland Mercury lore: We were founded the year that the "Thong Song" broke the brain of this horny nation, and we still swear employees in with the lyrics.