Letters: Here's a plan for keeping Portland weird
"I just read Jim Redden's article about parks budget cuts ("Ax cuts deep into parks budget," March 28). That's just one of our problems. Everybody knows that Portland is in trouble. Our city council form of government is outdated. We can't pay our retired public employees their outrageous retirement incomes. We have a growing homeless population that has no place to live. We have a city full of selfish single-family homeowners that take up entirely too much space for themselves.
So let's solve all these problems. Here's how.
Get rid of the mayor and council. Hire Jo Ann Hardesty as city manager. Close all the parks and community centers to the public. Make them all tent cities for the homeless.
Authorize the city manager to take all PERS money, and all the money saved from the Parks Department salaries to pay the minimum wages for all the now-available personnel needed to clean up all the new campgrounds. Yes, there will be more homeless, but think of all the people now available to take care of them.
Now if only you could get rid of those pesky single-family homeowners. Oh — I know! Annex their properties, build multi-unit housing, move all the homeless into the now available low-rent housing. Eliminate all taxes, thus eliminating the pesky budget. No more mayor, no more city council, no more PERS funding, no more problems.
If you wanted to keep Portland weird, wouldn't that do it?
Much to like in carbon legislation
Thank you for The Portland Tribune's Feb. 21 article on Oregon House Bill 2020, "Citizens to get a say on cap-and-trade proposal."
I appreciate the balanced reporting on the testimony received by the Joint Committee on Carbon Reduction regarding the legislation as it is currently written.
Under the section, "Forced to buy allowances," Schnitzer Steel, Ash Grove Cement, Campo & Poole Distributing and Oregon Trucking Associations all said they would be competitively disadvantaged in the broader market by HB 2020, because they would be forced to buy allowances.
This testimony appears to ignore the provision of HB 2020 for temporary free allowances for Energy Intensive, Trade Exposed industries (EITEs), but it also points to the benefit of a border adjustment in keeping the economic playing field level. HB 2020 currently does not include a border adjustment.
Border adjustments may be difficult to maintain at the state level, but at the national level, border adjustments already exist for many things. This is one reason why Oregonians who care about greenhouse gas reduction should support U.S. House Bill HR 763. It includes a border adjustment on carbon.
There are many other things to like about HR 763, which is why its approach to carbon emissions reduction is endorsed by 3,419 U.S. economists (including all four former chairs of the Federal Reserve) and 27 Nobel Laureate economists. I would encourage every Oregonian to learn more about HR 763, and to contact their congressional representative to request they give it their full support.