GET READY for your second new tax of the year, Portland! A little more than a month after voters approved a 10-cent gas tax to pay for city streets, Portland City Council is on the verge of another hike.

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The council's scheduled to vote June 22 on a new "construction excise tax," that would amount to 1 percent of the permit amount of commercial and residential projects in town—and it appears to have unanimous support for passage.

According to numbers drawn up by the Portland Housing Bureau, the tax might bring in more than $8 million a year—most of which would be used to fund affordable housing projects. DIRK VANDERHART


A HISTORIC RULING that a Portlander's gender should legally be classified as "non-binary" may lead the state to another first.

The Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles confirms to the Mercury it's investigating allowing a third option besides male and female under "sex" on state-issued IDs.

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"We have a lot of questions," says DMV spokesperson David House. The department has asked the Oregon Department of Justice to investigate the legal specifics of such a change, House says.

That comes after transgender Army veteran and Portland resident Jamie Shupe secured a Multnomah County judge's approval earlier this month for a legal change from female to non-binary, apparently the first such ruling in the country. DVH