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GOOD MORNING, PORTLAND! In this week's weather you can expect "business in the front" (cloudy with showers, Mon-Wed), and a "party in the back" (partly to mostly sunny skies Thurs-Sat). Now let's party down to the business of NEWS.
IN LOCAL NEWS:
• Good news: The workers of Laborers’ union Local 483 and the City of Portland came to a tentative agreement yesterday on a contract they've been negotiating for a year, which means for now... the STRIKE IS OFF. More than 600 critical city workers—who did such unenviable tasks as clearing ice of roads, fixing sewage leaks, and removing hazardous material from parks—were on strike since Thursday, until the city finally agreed to offer a 12% wage increase for all union members by July to get them up to a livable, competitive wage. While it's not perfect deal for the workers, it sets the stage for their next contract negotiation.
Multnomah County and the City of Portland will aim to eliminate unsheltered homelessness in Portland’s central city over the next four months by incentivizing landlords to rent to unhoused residents, county chair Jessica Vega Pederson announced Friday. https://t.co/GQlcD14Rdn— Portland Mercury 🗞 (@portlandmercury) February 3, 2023
• The Oregonian profiled a large homeless camp in California—one run by the group Mayor Wheeler has chosen to manage Portland's proposed camps—and while this particular one doesn't have a lot of complaints, there are two major differences: It's half the size of the Mayor's internment camps, and the residents aren't criminalized if they choose not to be forced into one.
In its Portland bid, Urban Alchemy said it would cost $5.1 million a year to operate a 150-person site. That's $34,000 per person. A studio apt would cost $15k to rent and supportive services @$15k per year would still be cheaper and folks would be housed. https://t.co/148EKxEk6h— Andy Miller (@pdxAndy) February 5, 2023
• Remember the guy who was rescued by the Oregon Coast Guard last week when the yacht he was on capsized in rough seas at the mouth of the Columbia River? Turns out... he stole that yacht. And also it turns out... he left a dead fish on the front porch of the Goonies house in Astoria? (Why do I feel these crimes are just the tip of this particular guy's iceberg?)
• If you're looking for some hot new music coming out of the PNW, then don't miss our team-up of Suzette Smith and Megan Seling as they introduce ten certifiable BANGERS in the debut edition of Ten Picks for Bandcamp Friday.
• Stern reminder: Don't be a "Valentine's Butthole"! Send your sweetie a FREE Mercury Reader Valentine for the whole world to see! (Did we mention it's free? It's FREE!)
Put on your smarty pants, it's time to see how YOU score on this week's tricky POP QUIZ PDX! This week: Entitled Portland white guys, who's playing Nike's Phil Knight in the movies, and... guess what... you're marrying a robot! 😯🤖https://t.co/4agIiSTDW4— Wm. Steven Humphrey (@WmSteveHumphrey) February 3, 2023
IN NATIONAL/WORLD NEWS:
• A massive double earthquake in Turkey and Syria has so far killed more than 2,300 people. The first was a 7.8-magnitude quake that was soon followed by another at 7.5-magnitude that leveled buildings, and left hundreds buried in the rubble. Rescue operations are underway in what already is being called a humanitarian crisis.
Earlier at 13:24p Turkey time, there was *another* M 7.5 earthquake.— zeynep tufekci (@zeynep) February 6, 2023
Under normal circumstances, this alone would be catastrophic. But was after the earlier M 7.8 one and countless aftershocks.
Many more buildings collapsed. Reports of rescuers trapped. https://t.co/65S4LfeVxd
• China is acting all mad because we shot down what they are still calling "a weather balloon." Meanwhile I personally can't understand why we're still talking about this at all.
• Congratulations on record breaking wins by Beyoncé at last night's Grammys, where she took home a whopping 32 (!) awards. Another record breaker: Singer Kim Petras (of that Sam Smith banger "Unholy") who is the first transgender woman to bring home a Grammy.
50-year anniversary of hip-hop performance at the #GRAMMYs by some of the greats including RunDMC, LL Cool J, Salt N Peppa, Ice T, Queen Latifah, Wu-Tang, Big Boi, Busta Rhymes, Missy Elliott, Nelly, Too Short, GloRilla, The Roots, and more... pic.twitter.com/HmGB0bvGZX— Leon Carrington (@LeonCarrington) February 6, 2023
• Bad news for Trump, the Koch organization (the megalomaniacal villains who are the biggest funders of Republican bullshit across the country) say they will once again be throwing their money in the upcoming election behind a single GOP candidate—but it ain't gonna be Trump.
• And finally... here's your Monday dose of TRUTH.
Millennials and Gen Z have no idea that the most bonkers social network is actually Nextdoor.— Philip Bump (@pbump) February 5, 2023