This weekend

The Lents Neighborhood Association‘s June general meeting will focus on immigrant support. State representatives and immigration law experts will be presents to discuss their efforts and how neighbors can help.

One of the main goals of Village Portland is to share efforts across neighborhood boundaries, so I figured people would want to know.

For more information on the meeting, go here. There’s also a community appreciation dinner before the meeting.

Lents Community Center, SE Woodstock Street * 7 pm meeting, dinner 6:30 pm 

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Last Friday, Flipside Bar and Carts (9320 SE Woodstock ) had their soft opening.

When we visited on Wednesday, the word was out and the place was nearly full. Three food carts were open (a burger cart, E-San Thai, and a Mediterranean cart).

We went with the Mediterranean cart, and though it wasn’t on the menu, they made me a vegi wrap. Their banana-strawberry crepe with chocolate sauce was great too!

FRIDAY

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 “Ring the bell and cross over into a mysterious faerie world this summer solstice! Magic awaits those mortals brave enough to dance with the faeries.

Enjoy this immersive ALL AGES theatre experience in the beautiful backyard at Taborspace!

Tickets are only sold in ADVANCE! Please go to www.joyandwondertheatre.com/shows/

Taborspace, * Fri – Sun * $15 – $20

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SATURDAY

The fifth annual Taste of Parkrose: There’s be a fun run from Rossi Farms through the new Luuwit View Park; food samples, beer tent, music stage, kids play area, local vendors, and more!

Still need convincing? Check out this sweet video with an animated barn, aerial drone footage, and EDM from last year:

Rossi Farms, 3839 NE 122nd Ave * 10 am – 4 pm 

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Re-imagining Home

Re-Imagining Home: A South Asian Youth Panel:

“Through Visual Art, Spoken Word, Mini-Performances, and conversations, a diverse panel of local South Asian youth will unpack the nuances of their lives as recent immigrants to America. Come, learn, and engage with their experiences and journeys.

This event is part of the Collins Gallery exhibition at Central Library and the South Asian Arts Festival happening March 8th – 11th.”

Midland Library * 2:30 pm – 4 pm 

***

 

Live music with The Boondock Boys (“classic rock, southern rock, and blues”).
The Blue Room Bar, 8145 SE 82nd Ave * 8 pm – 11 pm 

SUNDAY

Image result for lents international market

Lents International Farmers Market:

“Portland’s only internationally focused market, LIFM provides fresh, affordable, and culturally unique produce to the diverse Lents community and offers farm-direct sales opportunities for immigrant, emerging farmers, and new business owners. In addition to standard market produce, the market features a variety of unique fresh produce from Hmong, Latino, & Russian farmers.”

SE 92nd and Reedway between Foster and Harold * 9 am – 2 pm

***

Enjoy your weekend!

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A proposed Lents recycling center draws concerns from neighbors

Some Lents neighbors are concerned about a new container recycling center planned at 4616 SE 82nd Ave, calling it an unwelcome industrial facility in a residential area, and another example of how East Portland is treated unfairly by the City of Portland and political favors trump process.

Officials at Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative, who are planning the site, haven’t been cooperative with neighbors about their plan for security, to control noise, and manage vehicle traffic at the site on 82nd near Holgate Blvd, said Jennifer Young, a Lents neighborhood advocate who lives in the area.

Since Fred Meyer at SE 82nd and Foster Rd closed at the beginning of 2018, much of the container redemption activity has moved to the Wal-Mart in the Eastport Plaza Shopping Center, she said.

After tracking 911 calls lately, Young said about half the 911 in Lents are about the Wal-Mart— and that doesn’t include non-emergency calls. Both Wal-Mart and mall management have been helpful in addressing the jump in criminal activity by stepping up security, but Young said that based on how the process has been handled so far, she is concerned bottle drop management won’t be as vigilant when it opens.

“We think it’s going to be a disaster,” Young said.

***

The Holgate location should have about 10 reverse vending machines, said Joel Schoening, OBRC community relations manager, and a drop door that pre-registered users can use when the site isn’t open.

The hours on the Oregon Liquor Control Commission permit, which was approved two week ago, say the site will be open from 9 am to 6 pm or 7 pm (depending on the season).

The BottleDrop loction is planned to open this fall.

According to the OLCC permit application, the Holgate center would relieve all retailers within a mile of any duty to redeem containers (Zone 1); and retailers within two miles would only have to redeem up to 24 containers per person (Zone 2):

ZONE 1
Bi-Mart #653, 4315 SE Woodstock Blvd
Winco Foods #132, 7979 SE Powell Blvd
Walmart Supercenter #2552, 4200 SE 82nd Ave
Safeway #382, 3527 SE 122nd Ave
Safeway #1523, 4515 SE Woodstock Blvd
Walgreens #4353, 4325 SE 82nd Ave
ZONE 2
Safeway #1627, 3930 SE Powell Blvd
Trader Joe’s #143, 4715 SE Cesar E Chavez Blvd
Walgreens #4296, 3909 SE Holgate Blvd
Walgreens #4943, 12215 SE Powell Blvd

***

The OBRC has held the lease at the Holgate location for months, and Young said they haven’t done a good job keeping its property free of trash and debris. It’s often a site for illegal camping too, she added. Portland Maps says there’s an outstanding warrant (issued 5/21/18) against the property which, according to BDS website, means “the property is being billed monthly for violations OR a warrant is being requested for full or partial abatement”.

Young said she recently visited Wal-Mart with Schoening, and she said he seemed surprised by the crowds and open drug use nearby the site.

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As you can see in the image above, the location backs up to houses. The vehicles lines up south of the building were part of an un-permitted trailer park run.  It was eventually shut down by the City, but Young said the property has been a long-term problem for the neighborhood.

***

Speaking about potential concerns with the property, Schoening wrote in an email:

“We’ve had some ongoing conversations with neighbors, property owners, and other public agencies with the intent of creating a coordinated effort to reduce the kinds of problems that have been experienced with bottle returns at Fred Meyer and Walmart. The specifics are yet to be worked out, and we intend to work with these same groups to determine the best options.”

He added later that a BottleDrop in SE Portland is needed where the density of retailers are. OBRC is planning more smaller recycling locations in the area, called BottleDrop Express (like this one off Hawthorne Blvd) in the future, he said.

He wrote: “The state of Oregon has asked that we build out to 40 of these Redemption Centers (there are currently 23) to provide access to our high volume areas.”

OBRC’s 2018 first quarter report here. It’s light on details, but it’s interesting to know that the total redemption rate in Oregon (after the container deposited doubled in 2017) is 82%, and the total weight of all containers processed this quarter equals 219 grey whales.

The statewide numbers for beverage retailers compared to bottle return options are below. The Glisan site (12403 NE Glisan St) was the number one BottleDrop site by volume, the report said.

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In March of 2017, Mark Johnson a state legislator and supporter of the Bottle Bill, predicted a “tsunami of new containers” with the doubling of the deposit, and he said there’s no where to redeem them in much of the state.

Willamette Week wrote about the Bottle Bill in February of 2017, just before the deposit doubled on April 1st of that year. On January 1st of 2018, the types of bottles that could be redeemed was expanded.

If you’re unfamiliar with the Bottle Bill, here’s some background from the State.

***

Neighbors near the Beaverton BottleDrop Redemption Center (9307 SW Beaverton Hillsdale Hwy) are suing the City of Beaverton because they say the site is industrial, not commercial as the zoning requires. The neighbors’ attorney, Michael Neff, said neighbors have complained of noise and loitering issues since the bottle drop opened in May of 2017 (KATU story).

Because of this legal case, Neff has researched OBRC practices, and he said he thinks the was the Bottle Bill has been administered hasn’t been good for the state and consumers. The beverage distributors and retailers that make up the cooperative (OBRC) keep the deposit from un-redeemed containers, so Neff said there’s an incentive for OBRC to have fewer, larger, less-convenient bottle redemption centers.

“With this system, consumers have to drive two or three miles to redeem their containers,” Neff said. “It’s convenient for them, it’s not convenient for us.”

Neff said he thinks it would be better, even though it would be more expensive for retailers and the OBRC, to have more bottle return sites at the stores where people are already going.

It’s unclear how OBRC chooses the type of bottle return for different locations, Neff said. And he also said he would like to see more transparency in OBRC procedures, including how much money OBRC bring in and spends on redemption centers.

In the video below, Schoening (@ 41:41) gave a presentation on the BottleDrop to the Lents Neighborhood Association in February. In the video Schoening said there’s a bottle return facility in the Pearl, but Neff pointed out it’s a far smaller operation than what’s planned for the Holgate location and will serve far fewer stores.

The BottleDrop Express located in the Pearl Safeway location (1303 NW Lovejoy St) location has two reverse vending machines, according to store staff.

In 2014, neighbors downtown organized to reject a BottleDrop that would’ve served three grocery stores. It was planned for W Burnside St between 17th and 18th Ave, and opposed because neighbors said it would draw too much vehicle and pedestrian traffic to the area.

***

On June 19th, Neff and his client will go before the Beaverton City Council, and they will determine if the BottleDrop is actually a recycling center. If they agree that is, it would not legally be permitted in the commercial zone where it’s located.

Neff has studied Portland’s property code, and said he thinks the facility planned on 82nd Ave doesn’t conform to current zoning rules. The City characterized it as a “Recycling Drop-Off Center” rather than a “Recycling Center”.

“The definition of ‘Recycling Drop-Off Center’ specifically provides that processing of materials is limited to ‘glass breaking and separation’.  Therefore, no aluminum can crushing or shredding of plastic containers can occur under this definition,” Neff wrote.

After looking at BottleDrop facilities around the state, Neff said OBRC is an “regulatory chameleon”, that represents its facilities differently depending on what the zoning allows.

The BottleDrop facilities are more of an impact on a neighborhood than OBRC represents, Neff said, and he said he wants to know what they can expect.

***

Young and the Lents neighborhood advocates were surprised when they learned about the placement of the BottleDrop back in March. They also believe what’s planned is an industrial facility rather than retail, as the zoning demands— and that the process wasn’t handled fairly.

Young said the Land Use Compatibility Statement for the facility was expedited by a staff member of Commissioner Chloe Eudaly, who said in an email that he did it to help Jules Bailey, a former Multnomah County Commissioner, who now works for OBRC.

Eudaly’s office oversees BDS.

The staffer, Marshall Runkel, told Lents advocates he expedited the LUCS and apologized for not consulting with the neighborhood first. He also told them that he thought the property would have to go through a land use process first, Young noted.

The slight was even more shocking, she said, because Runkel promised better communication with neighborhood advocates on a tour of the same location where the BottleDrop is now planned. Since this incident, Runkel doesn’t return her emails any more, Young said.

Having the location zoned as retail means it might not have to go through a land use review, but it probably will because the scope of the project has changed, another neighborhood advocate pointed out. The property’s zoning also has a stipulation which brings in requirements for noise and nuisance abatement, and landscaping buffers, they said.

The original permit filed on March 29th said all the improvements would be to the interior of the building, but a new permit filed on May 23rd wants to remove the storefront, add egress doors, auto doors, and a night drop door.

There are several factors that can trigger a land use review, Young said, and the cost associated with the project is a major factor.

***

Young said she wants The City and OBRC to be required to take another look at the Land Use Compliance Statement to make sure what’s planned fits the code.

A BDS representative from the zoning hotline, who didn’t identify themselves, said a letter from the City of Portland determined that the proposed use of the facility lined up with the code. I asked another representative if there’s a process to how a LUCS could be reviewed, but didn’t make contact before deadline. I’ll update the story when I learn more.

Young said the project might have run into delays from Oregon Department of Transportation based on OBRC’s plan traffic flow.

***

When Fred Meyer Fuel Center moved into the neighborhood— just a few doors south on 82nd Ave— Young said they began the process a year or two in advance by sending letters to all the neighbors nearby. They worked closely with neighbors throughout the process, and Young said they’ve been a good neighbor since they’ve opened.

Young and other neighborhood activists said they aren’t against the recycling center, they just think it needs to be placed in location that fits the zoning and is more appropriate for industrial uses.

***

This weekend

A proposed recycling center in Lents is drawing concerns from neighbors.

***

This week, the Portland City Council authorized an agreement to accept $2 million from the Oregon Department of Transportation for the design and construction of the Seventies Neighborhood Greenway. It will run north to south, just east of 82nd Ave.

And if you’re fired up about cycling, there are dozens of themed rides this weekend and throughout the month with Pedalpalooza!

***

The Montavilla Neighborhood Association is considering bringing a sanctioned houselessness camp to the neighborhood. For more information, go here.

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FRIDAY

As of Thursday, Academy Theater is back open after a fire earlier this month!

An excellent slate of second-run films are playing now, including “Lu Over the Wall”, both “Back to the Future” films, “A Wrinkle in Time”, “Black Panther”, and several other great films.

7818 SE Stark St * show times *  $4 for adults, $3 for youth & seniors
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“This June the Whitenoise project for our second event in the De-Canon Residency and Pop Up Library is excited to host powerhouse out of town poets Sokunthary Svay, Do Ngyuen Mai and Hari Alluri as they visit our fair city, as well as local favorite Armin Tolentino!
The Whitenoise Project is a reading and discussion series aiming to center voices from underrepresented communities (PoC, Queer, Femme, WoC and people with disabilities), and is supported by a Jade-Midway Placemaking Grant from APANO.”  
Milepost 5, 8155 NE 81st Ave * 7 pm – 9 pm
***

SATURDAY

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Paint the Town Green! is sponsored by SOLVE (originally Stop Oregon Litter and Vandalism) and it’s bringing together several Southeast / East Portland neighborhoods to pick up trash and paint over graffiti along 82nd Ave on June 16th.

Brentwood-Darlington Neighborhood

Foster-Powell Neighborhood

Lents Neighborhood

Mt. Scott- Arleta Neighborhood

Richmond (Division and Hawthorne) Neighborhood

For more information on the program, go here or choose your neighborhood above.

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The beautiful game; the world’s game… Portland Mercado is showing World Cup games. For more details and a specific schedule, visit their Facebook page.

Portland Mercado, 7238 SE Foster Rd * all weekend

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“The Midway Business Association is sponsoring a new family-friendly event to celebrate community, business and nature in East Portland at Powell Butte (161st and SE Powell) on Saturday, June 16th from 8 am – Noon. Activities include a scavenger hunt, service project, bird watching tour, wildlife rescue exhibit featuring raptors (falcons and owls), disc golf demonstration, presentations from local businesses and a raffle to benefit area non-profits.”
Powell Butte Nature Park, 16160 SE Powell Blvd * 8 am – noon 
***
Live music at Cartlandia:
“It’s the Capacitors’ maiden voyage! Wear your dancin’ shoes and please tip your bartender.”
Blue Room Bar @ Cartlandia * 8145 SE 82nd Ave * 8 pm -11 pm
*** 

SUNDAY

Image result for lents international market

Lents International Farmers Market:

“Portland’s only internationally focused market, LIFM provides fresh, affordable, and culturally unique produce to the diverse Lents community and offers farm-direct sales opportunities for immigrant, emerging farmers, and new business owners. In addition to standard market produce, the market features a variety of unique fresh produce from Hmong, Latino, & Russian farmers.”

SE 92nd and Reedway between Foster and Harold * 9 am – 2 pm 

***

Eid is Islamic holiday celebrating the end of the month of Ramadan. The celebration is sponsored by the Somali Women Coalition of Portland.

East Portland Neighborhood Office, 1017 NE 117 Ave * 6 pm – 10 pm
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Enjoy your weekend!

This weekend

We’ve been taking a close look at the BottleDrop planned for 82nd Ave near Holgate Blvd.

These recycling centers are important, but this is another example of how when potentially-problematic developments are forced on neighbors, the conversation is poisoned on the front end.

I think everybody supports recycling, and understands that a recycling center is going to attract people who might not be in the best financial position, but it’s so important for decision makers to respect neighbors and their experiences.

Check back tomorrow evening when the story’s published.

FRIDAY

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Rojo ™ “World’s Most Beloved Llama” visits Cartlandia.

“Incredibly touchable, and unusually people-friendly, Rojo is recognized as a local celebrity as he participates in many local parades and charity events, and makes regular visits to schools, hospitals, and adult-care facilities throughout the Portland, OR, and Vancouver, WA area.”

Cartlandia beer garden, 8145 SE 82nd Ave * 6 pm – 7 pm * free

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Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, the Portland Pickles are back in town this weekend!

Buy tickets here.

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Tibetan Buddhist Meditation practices:

“An evening of Buddhist meditation practices. mindfulness, visualization, chanting, recitation of mantra, contemplation. clear guidance and explanations by Lama Jacqueline Mandell, Buddhist meditation teacher. Following in the footsteps of revered ancient teachers.

All levels welcome including beginners. Suggested Donation, $10. No one turned away for financial reasons.”

 

***

SATURDAY

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“Come give feedback on the draft final design for the new
playground. Find us at Gilbert Park School’s free community
barbecue from 3 pm – 5 pm. Kids welcome!”

Gilbert Park Elementary, 13132 SE Ramona Street * 3 pm – 5 pm

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“An evening with the James Counts Band.”

The Blue Room Bar, 8145 SE 82nd Ave * 8 pm – 11 pm 

SUNDAY

Image result for lents international market

Lents International Farmers Market:

“Portland’s only internationally focused market, LIFM provides fresh, affordable, and culturally unique produce to the diverse Lents community and offers farm-direct sales opportunities for immigrant, emerging farmers, and new business owners. In addition to standard market produce, the market features a variety of unique fresh produce from Hmong, Latino, & Russian farmers.”

Market music with Inky Shadows (pretend jazz) from 11 am – 2 pm.

SE 92nd and Reedway between Foster and Harold * 9 am – 2 pm 

***

Botanical Printing on Paper with artist Anna Zell:

“Botanical printing uses historical methods to capture colors, textures, and shapes found in nature– resulting in stunning plant portraits. In this class, leaves are layered onto paper, optionally adding some natural plant dyes, then steamed or boiled. This environmentally gentle process permanently transfers botanical pigments without synthetic dyes, inks or paints. Cost includes paper and dying materials.

Artist Anna Zell will lead you step-by-step through the eco-printing process. At the end of the day, you’ll take home your own printed papers and cards. You’ll also be given a kit to dye more papers – for yourself or as spectacular gifts for others.” 

Register online  or contact JoAnn Vrilakas, education coordinator, at jvrilakas@leachgarden.org. Limit twelve.

Leach Botanical Garden, * 1 pm – 4 pm * $75, Leach Garden Member $65

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A celebration of Yotsofa and marketfest, organized by the Lao community in Oregon and Southwest Washington.

“This historic event will feature Lao community Buddhist ceremonies, Marketfest and a variety of activities. Booths from businesses, organizations and individuals will be set up to offer information, arts and crafts, items for sale, food and beverages, music and videos.” 

Wat Buddhathammaram, 4350 N.E. 133rd Ave * 8 am – 6 pm 

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Enjoy your weekend!

This weekend

So many awesome events are happening in Lents! And several of the events have been organized by Green Lents.

***

At May’s Lents Neighborhood Association meeting, a housing forum was held (beginning @ 21:00 in the video linked in the meeting summary). Attending were representatives from: Green Lents; ROSE Community Development, The City of Portland’s Bureau of Planning and Sustainability; a representative from Mayor Ted Wheeler‘s office (who referenced the 2017 State of Housing Report); Living Cully (part of the Anti-Displacement PDX coalition); Palindrome (developer of Oliver Station @ 37:15 an update is given); Lents Strong housing team; and Tenants Priced Out working group.

There’s a wealth of experience and knowledge shared by the panel… it’s definitely worth a watch.

Many initiatives were proposed to help, but most of them rely on property taxes. And, in my opinion, the forum’s question of the night was: since East Portland and low income home owners bear the heaviest burden of tax increases… is property tax reform coming?

FRIDAY

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The Portland Pickles take on the Port Angeles Lefties (tickets). It’s the season opener and there are games Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Tickets were still available for opening day on Thursday afternoon.

Walker Stadium, 4727 SE 92nd Ave * 7:05 pm * $5 – $13 

SATURDAY

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“Join us as we imagine a more livable Lents with safer streets, clean air, and a healthy environment. We are hosting hands-on activities for a variety of projects. We’ll be gathering your feedback on: “ intersection design and safety, street signage; transportation priorities; community gardens; and other “big ideas”.

Registration (required), and more information is here.

Kelly Elementary School, 9030 SE Cooper St * 10 am – 1 pm 

SUNDAY

Lents International Market opening day:

“Portland’s only internationally focused market, LIFM provides fresh, affordable, and culturally unique produce to the diverse Lents community and offers farm-direct sales opportunities for immigrant, emerging farmers, and new business owners. In addition to standard market produce, the market features a variety of unique fresh produce from Hmong, Latino, & Russian farmers.” 

For a list of vendors and more information, go here. Live music from Broke Poster Child will go from 11 am – 2 pm.

Lents International Market, 5716 SE 92nd Ave * 9 am – 2 pm 

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Lents Green Ring Bike Ride! (Invitation):

“Learn to fix your bike, then ride with us to the tool library! This event is free and everyone is welcome.

Green Lents and its Community Tool Library will be partnering with P:ear Bikes and Bikes for Humanity to lead a ride around Lents’ Green Ring at noon, and providing basic repairs in a workshop beforehand. The ride is a 4-mile loop starting and ending at the tool library.”

10 am – 12 pm – Bike repair workshop * 12 pm – 2 pm – Lents Green Ring ride

Green Lents Tool Library, 9215 SE Ramona St * 10 am – 2 pm 

***

East County Community Orchestra Spring Concert:

“The East County Community Orchestra (known as “ECCO” to orchestra members) has been in existence since 1978. It was established by founder and first conductor Harold Webber as a venue for high school graduates and other interested parties to have a place to play. It operates as a non-profit organization, with a full board of directors in addition to the Music Director / Conductor. Concerts are offered free of charge to the community.”

David Douglas High School, 1400 SE 130th Ave * 3 pm 

***

Enjoy your weekend!

Lents Neighborhood Association – May general meeting

May’s Lents Neighborhood Association general meeting focused on housing, with a panel of experts from all over the city.

Thanks to Robert Schultz for filming the meeting, and his creativity with its opening. It made me smile.

A moment of silence was had for  Jo Lynn Nearing, a long-time LNA board member, who died from complications stroke and lung cancer on June 2nd. Her celebration of life will be held at Lakeside Garden (16211 SE Foster Rd) on June 16th from 1 pm to 4 pm.

The LNA sought approval for a variety of initiative from last month’s community work session, and those results were shared with those in attendance.

@ 16:50 – There’s a new subdivision planned near Mt. Scott (105th Ave and Henderson St), said Cora Lee Potter, land-use chair. She also said that Portland zoning changes are going through, and that she would be willing to help explain the changes (contact information) to neighbors if they wanted help.

Sabina Urdes, LNA chair said two editions of the LNA newsletter have been published. She also said that if anyone wants something published they can contact her.

@ 21:00The LNA began their forum on housing, with representatives from: Green Lents; ROSE Community Development, The City of Portland’s Bureau of Planning and Sustainability; a representative from Mayor Ted Wheeler‘s office (who referenced the 2017 State of Housing Report); Living Cully (part of the Anti-Displacement PDX coalition); Palindrome (developer of Oliver Station @ 37:15 an update is given); Lents Strong housing team; and Tenants Priced Out working group.

There’s a wealth of experience and knowledge shared by the panel… it’s definitely worth a watch.

@ 1:28:00 – A representative from the Arts Tax Oversight Committee gave an update on the tax. They are considering raising the exemption to the tax, but and also raising the tax from $35 to somewhere between $41 and $45.

These Art Tax proposals will likely be brought before the City Council this summer, he said.

@ 1:30:20 – Former LNA Chair Nick Christensen gave an update on his work helping neighbors get better rates on their flood insurance.

@ 1:31:10 – A representative from Green Lents, said that on June 2nd and 3rd, the Lents Community Action Forum will be held at Kelly Elementary School. Green Lents will also hold a neighborhood-wide garage sale in July. Deadline to apply for the garage sale is June 27th.

@ 1:33:20 – The pastor of Lents Seventh Day Adventist Church, where the LNA meetings are held, is hosting their Vacation Bible School on June 2 and Sun June 3. Impact Your Health, a program to help the un- or under-insured is being held August 10th and 12th. Their events are here.

Paint the Town Green an event to pick up trash and paint over graffiti along 82nd Ave, is scheduled for June 16th.