The most logical solution was buried at the very end of this article. Just add more groups to those who have a say. Crippling the associations is really about the city bureaucrats wanting more control under the guise of equity. The fundamental flaw in the city's system is the lack of geographic representation of the councilors. There should be districts. Too much west side infuence has been a long standing problem.


This is just another attempt to limit public participation in decision making. I'm all for giving more people a voice, and we can do that without taking away the voice of others.

Unfortunately, the rewritten code is just a bunch of aspirational statements, lacking in specifics. It feel only partially complete.


So the sentiment behind this change is laudable. So everyone involved means well. So the goal is to get more voices in the conversation. Yeah, great, BUT - the end result of all these good intentions is disastrous.

Sure, you can focus on how a rich White NA blocked, I dunno, a homeless shelter and use this as proof that NA uphold privilege. OK, good point. But the unique status of NA, and the fact that NA can issue legal challenges to developers FUNDED BY THE CITY, also means that NA have saved trees, parks, playgrounds, historic homes all over the city. Taking this power away from NA is handing the city to developers on a silver platter. NA will be squabbling with twenty other organizations, many of which could be front groups, for a few dollars, and there will be nothing to stop developers from turning Stumptown into generic exurbia.

And go back to that "front group" idea for a minute. NA, which are required to be transparent and accountable, would theoretically be no more empowered than any group with a webpage. THINK for a minute of the unintended consequences of this. Patriot Prayer gets its little "neighborhood group" in the mix. Proud Boys gets city funding for their "civic events." Developers agitate for more houses to be torn down, and the city accepts it as "community feedback." More and more million-dollar McMansions are sold to the city as "high-density" "duplexes," housing two affluent couples and replacing hundred-year old homes that once housed six or seven low-income renters. It's hopelessly naive to think this would NOT be the inevitable result.

This article ends with the question, "Who is allowed to make decisions about the city's future?" Well, under this proposal, the answer is clear: City Hall, and only City Hall, who will selectively choose the voices it listens to. I voted for Eudaly and I like her aspirations for inclusivity. But the idea of rendering NA powerless depends on us TRUSTING that one good person will make "uplifting" decisions about "including diverse voices." A city can't be run by trusting the good heart of one person. Code has to be bulletproof, and has to last beyond an individual's tenure in City Hall. I'm hoping this craptastic rewrite gets shredded and Rhee starts all over.

Please wait...

Comments are closed.

Commenting on this item is available only to members of the site. You can sign in here or create an account here.

Add a comment

By posting this comment, you are agreeing to our Terms of Use.