We need your help. The economic fallout of the coronavirus has threatened our ability to keep producing the Mercury. If you’re able, please consider donating to the Mercury.


Good morning, Portland! Let's all welcome one of our newest residents, the Oregon Zoo's very own Kiden the Giraffe! Kiden comes to us from South Carolina’s Greenville Zoo.

Kidens the little one in the front.
Kiden's the little one in the front. Oregon Zoo

Well, Kiden, you picked an interesting time to make a big move, but we're glad you're here. Anyway, here are the headlines.

• Gov. Kate Brown will announce which Oregon counties can enter Phase One of her reopening plan at 10 am this morning (hint: Multnomah won't be one of them). We don't have the full list yet, but the Oregonian is reporting that Deschutes, Lane and Jackson counties are among them.

• Kroger, Fred Meyer's parent company, plans to end its extra-$2-an-hour "hero pay" for employees working in a pandemic this week. Notably, the pandemic continues.

• Oregon now has its first case of pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome—the coronavirus-linked condition that affects young people. A 14-year-old Portland girl has the syndrome, which causes life-threatening inflammation, fever, and stomach pain.

• Dr. Rick Bright, a former top federal scientist turned whistleblower, is testifying before Congress this morning. So far he's detailed how the Trump administration failed to stock up on a potentially life-saving drug ahead of COVID-19, and warned that we are facing "the darkest winter in modern history” if the government doesn't act swiftly (Hint: they probably won't).

• Aimee Stephens, the transgender woman whose landmark workplace discrimination lawsuit made it to the Supreme Court last year, died this week at age 59. Pour one out for Aimee today.

• Canadian oil transportation company Zenith Energy has abandoned plans to build a new pipeline in Portland, after facing pushback from the City of Portland. However, Zenith continues to operate its oil shipping terminal in town.

• Thanks to the firehose of disinformation that is social media making pinhead conspiracy theories readily available to misguided individuals, the Department of Homeland Security now has to spend time advising telecom industry heads how best to protect their 5G cell towers from arson attempts. In related news: 5G technology does not spread COVID-19.

• The City of Portland will pay a $22,000 settlement to a Portlander who was suing the Portland Police Bureau for injuries police inflicted during a 2018 protest. Two other protestors injured by police that day are continuing with their lawsuit, saying they want a jury trial.

• Friendly reminder that you can still buy one of these beauties: