Support BikePortland

Chloe Eudaly is our new transportation commissioner

Posted by on August 8th, 2018 at 10:03 am

Commissioner Eudaly spoke at the launch of Adaptive Biketown, a program she pushed for, in July 2017.
(Photo: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland)

“She is excited about the assignment and ready for a new challenge.”
— Marshall Runkel, chief of staff for Commissioner Chloe Eudaly

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler has chosen City Commissioner Chloe Eudaly to oversee the transportation bureau. Eudaly’s office confirmed the news to us yesterday after a “major bureau shakeup” was reported by The Oregonian. She’ll take over the agency from outgoing commissioner Dan Saltzman.

Eudaly is a relative newcomer to City Hall who unseated Steve Novick in a runoff election in 2016. A former bookstore owner and activist who has lived in Portland since 1988, Eudaly will take the reins of an agency with 850 employees and an annual budget of around $320 million. PBOT will be the largest bureau in her portfolio by far. With Wheeler taking over her current assignment of the Bureau of Development Services, the only other agency in Eudaly’s portfolio is the Office of Community and Civic Life (formerly the Office of Neighborhood Involvement).

Eudaly’s Chief of Staff Marshall Runkel, told us yesterday that the Commissioner is, “Excited about the assignment and ready for a new challenge.” (Eudaly is currently out on vacation and unavailable for comment.) That sounded like typical spin, until I read what Runkel typed next: “Me and the Commissioner are signed up for the PSU Traffic and Transportation Course.”

Runkel is referring to the free (if taken for no credit) Portland State University course established by former commissioner now U.S. Congressman Earl Blumenauer. As we reported in our profile of the class in 2016, it has a sterling reputation as one of the hidden forces that makes Portland’s ecosystem of activists, planners, and transportation engineers so vibrant and healthy.

The fact that Runkel knows about the class and took the step of signing himself and his boss up for it, bodes very well. I’m also happy to report that Runkel has already inquired about a possible bike ride later this summer to learn more about cycling issues.

Advertisement

“Since most of our cities were designed around the automobile, it’s hard for a lot of people to conceive of why we’d want it any other way. We need to start showing them.”
— Chloe Eudaly

Given her short tenure on Council so far, and her distance from transportation-related issues in the past, Eudaly doesn’t have a long record for us to examine. We do know however, that she has a strong understanding of urban cycling and that accessibility for people who use mobility devices and adaptive bicycles will be a priority issue. Eudaly’s son uses a wheelchair to manage his severe physical disability and she was an activist on that issue for years prior to working at City Hall. It was then-candidate Eudaly who, in May 2016, first raised the question about how Portland’s forthcoming bike share program would not be accessible to people with disabilities. Two years later, Eudaly will inherit an agency that recently settled an ADA lawsuit for $113 million.

Interestingly, the most we’ve heard from Eudaly about cycling came from a comment she left on BikePortland while she was running for City Council. In it, she shared how she lived carfree for most of her 20s. “I own a wheelchair van and a bicycle,” she wrote. “I drive about half as much as the average person, and I rent more fuel efficient cars for my very occasional road trips, but I am dependent on the van until or unless I can create a life for us where home/work/school/medical services are close-in and reliably accessible by public transportation (which probably means living near a Max or streetcar line).”

Here’s the most salient policy position Eudaly stated in that comment two years ago:

“Safe and accessible streets for pedestrians and cyclists are a priority for me and we need to be creating them across the city. I’m interested in what Bike Portland has to say about equity across our neighborhoods in regards to things like sidewalks, crosswalks, and bicycle infrastructure. When people cannot safely walk in their neighborhoods and many people with mobility challenges (growing in numbers with our aging population) are virtually housebound due to living in inaccessible neighborhoods, it’s hard to get them excited about spending $$$ on bike paths. I’d personally love to see continued and increased collaboration between bicycle advocates, disability advocates, and neighborhoods around these issues.

I’m also interested in incentivizing living close to home (some cities have special home loan programs for people who commit to this), improving our public transportation system including making it more affordable for low income riders like Seattle is doing, preserving and increasing housing in the central city for low income and moderate income earners in order to reduce commuting among other things, and creating more events along the lines of Sunday Parkways where we at least temporarily take back our streets for other purposes. Since most of our cities were designed around the automobile, it’s hard for a lot of people to conceive of why we’d want it any other way, we need to start showing them.”

Eudaly’s priority on equity and housing affordability could lead to even stronger connections between transportation and land-use issues.

When it comes to urban cycling, Eudaly’s formative experience came from “a few days tooling around Amsterdam” with friend and In the City of Bikes: The Story of the Amsterdam Cyclist author, Pete Jordan.

Portland parking reform activist and daily bike rider Tony Jordan has met with Eudaly’s staff several times a year since she took office. “I think her staff have good perspective on other modes of transportation and I think as long as we continue to highlight how inequitable car-centric policy and design are, this could be a good thing for like minded Portlanders,” he shared with us yesterday.

For the past 17 months, City Commissioner Dan Saltzman hasn’t wowed transportation reformers; but he’s been regarded as a “steady hand at the wheel” (according to Jordan). Saltzman has given very reliable and strong support for Vision Zero projects and seemed to have a strong working relationship with former PBOT Director Leah Treat.

Replacing Treat will be just one of Eudaly’s big jobs. She’ll have to steer PBOT through a potentially tumultuous era that will include decisions about the role of electric scooters in our mobility mix, the future of our bike share system, and the passage and (hopefully) implementation of some the most significant bike infrastructure projects we’ve seen in years.

The good news for her is that PBOT’s coffers are relatively full for the first time in decades. The bad news is, spending that money on anything other than maintenance and paving has often been controversial. With an activism background and an understanding of how transportation connects to social justice and other big issues, Eudaly seems like a great choice to move the conversation forward and take PBOT to the next level.

In related news, Mayor Wheeler has decided to remove Commissioner Amanda Fritz from the helm of the Portland Parks and Recreation Bureau and give it back to Commissioner Nick Fish. Read Wheeler’s executive order on bureau assignments for the full details.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

Never miss a story. Sign-up for the daily BP Headlines email.

BikePortland needs your support.

Greenfield Health
Please support BikePortland.

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

107 Comments
  • Clicky Freewheel August 8, 2018 at 10:19 am

    Well, this is disappointing. Chloe has zero experience in transportation (let alone government in general…). This does not bode well for PBOT. Expect measures designed to punish landowners, etc. coming coon.

    Recommended Thumb up 41

    • bikeninja August 8, 2018 at 11:36 am

      You are right Clicky, it is much better to punish renters , cyclists and transit riders and leave the landowners, and auto-addicted alone.

      Recommended Thumb up 15

      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty August 8, 2018 at 4:28 pm

        Why punish anyone?

        Recommended Thumb up 24

        • El Biciclero August 11, 2018 at 1:50 pm

          Cuz that’s the way the system works. You can’t make it better for everybody. For somebody to see an improvement, somebody else has to give it up.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 11, 2018 at 3:32 pm

            Life is not a zero sum game.

            Recommended Thumb up 7

    • JeffS August 11, 2018 at 9:02 pm

      She has zero experience in anything. Didn’t seem to bother the people who elected her.

      Recommended Thumb up 3

      • X August 12, 2018 at 12:18 pm

        She’s a single parent. Do you have children? Have you ever been in charge of a child for as much as 15 minutes?

        Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, she has also operated an independent business for several years. Were you ever self-employed? What if you started every work day knowing that you had to sell $200 worth of something before you started paying yourself?

        Recommended Thumb up 2

        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty August 12, 2018 at 10:30 pm

          Being a parent can be difficult, as is operating a business. Neither are good predictors of political or managerial effectiveness.

          The world is full of examples of super capable people who are good at one hard thing failing at a different hard thing.

          I sincerely hope Eudaly is a rock star at running PBOT and an effective champion for active transportation.

          Recommended Thumb up 2

          • X August 13, 2018 at 7:53 am

            Right. But JeffS said she has “zero experience of anything” which is false internally because he admits she was elected, therefore she ran a successful election campaign. That’s the only credential we require for her office.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Hello, Kitty
              Hello, Kitty August 13, 2018 at 10:14 am

              True — taken literally, that statement is ridiculous.

              Recommended Thumb up 1

  • mh August 8, 2018 at 10:32 am

    Jonathan, I hope you’re right. Eudaly horrified me in a debate with Novick where she said something about not removing requirements for parking because she needs parking for that wheelchair van.

    Once again (as with Hardesty’s candidacy), if Tony is working well with her and her staff, that’s meaningful and reassuring. And taking the Traffic and Transportation class is huge. I look forward to hearing what her class project is going to be.

    Recommended Thumb up 20

    • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) August 8, 2018 at 11:20 am

      I’m not saying Eudaly is a great savior for transpo reform and that I expect her to do great things right away. I’m optimistic though. She’s a good choice given the options wheeler had (Fritz and Fish).

      Recommended Thumb up 18

      • Middle of the Road Guy August 8, 2018 at 12:05 pm

        I wish it was possible to have commissioners without any assigned Bureaus.

        Recommended Thumb up 7

        • SERider August 9, 2018 at 10:09 am

          I wish it was possible to have a new form of city government.

          Recommended Thumb up 8

          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 9, 2018 at 10:36 am

            It is.

            Recommended Thumb up 10

        • David Hampsten August 10, 2018 at 10:46 pm

          You have city commissioners in lieu of having a city manager – essentially your mayor is the city manager, and each of the other 4 commissioners are assistant city managers. I’d much rather have elected city managers than appointed ones.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Michael Andersen (Contributor)
        Michael Andersen (Contributor) August 8, 2018 at 11:41 pm

        I think this captures my own views too.

        Got no knowledge of how she is as a manager, but as a politician Eudaly is definitely smart, definitely attuned to the ways justice and the status quo conflict and definitely capable of studying up and grokking new stuff.

        I’ll quote my extremely intelligent friend Michelle Poyourow, the Street Trust’s former policy manager, who had this to say about transportation policy and the mayoral race in 2015:

        “I don’t have any particularly bikey or transportation-progressive people in mind whom I think should run. All kinds of people come to the conclusion that bikes are a good investment, and our transportation system needs radical reform, whom I wouldn’t identify as being part of that ‘culture.’ They just do the math, or trust good advisors who themselves do the math. I’m thinking of Bloomberg, Novick, others like them.

        I will have to think about who in the city is smart and ballsy and experienced enough to be a good mayor. It might not be someone who currently gets the “bike” vote. But it is someone who knows bullshit when they see it.”

        https://bikeportland.org/2015/10/29/nine-biking-advocates-portlands-fast-changing-mayoral-race-167033

        Recommended Thumb up 5

        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty August 8, 2018 at 11:51 pm

          Chloe for mayor? No.

          Recommended Thumb up 24

        • soren August 9, 2018 at 9:10 am

          I get that active “transportation advocates” fawn over Novick because he lobbied for a highly regressive gas tax instead of a progressive income tax, but come on.

          Am I the only one who remembers that Novick gutted PBOT active transportation funding immediately after being elected?

          Recommended Thumb up 1

          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 9, 2018 at 11:04 am

            Frankly, we need more gas tax. A lot more.

            Recommended Thumb up 9

            • soren August 9, 2018 at 12:40 pm

              A large gas tax that would require the refashioning of our transportation system is something I support. Small flat gas taxes that disproportionately impact lower-income folk are among the most regressive taxes in the USA.

              Recommended Thumb up 2

            • Doug Hecker August 9, 2018 at 10:29 pm

              PBOT will be smart to realize that the voters will not pass another gas tax. Drivers, whether you like them or not, barely let it slide by and what do they get in return? Not what they want. I did see how the mayor asked PBOT about tolling local roads as well so maybe something will come of that as some sort of outlandish idea.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 9, 2018 at 11:25 pm

                Or not, if that ballot measure requiring a vote on tolling passes.

                Recommended Thumb up 3

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 9, 2018 at 11:34 pm

                I actually want to expand on this a tad.

                I feel the urgent pressure to make changes, big changes, in the way we do business that others on this site often express. Yet I also see the danger in overreach, of triggering a reaction that sets us back, and I wish there was more of an acknowledgement of political reality from people.

                The ballot measure on tolling is a great example; we finally get a (sort of, possibly, slightly) bold proposal on congestion pricing, and in return we get a measure that not only (likely) shut down the current proposal, but all future proposals as well.

                It can be challenging and frustrating to have a desire for change and social works, and also an unswaying commitment to democracy and individual freedom.

                Recommended Thumb up 7

              • Michael Andersen (Contributor)
                Michael Andersen (Contributor) August 10, 2018 at 1:51 pm

                For once we agree on something, HK!

                Recommended Thumb up 1

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 10, 2018 at 2:47 pm

                Wait… what? Did I make a mistake?

                Recommended Thumb up 3

          • Michael Andersen (Contributor)
            Michael Andersen (Contributor) August 10, 2018 at 1:51 pm

            Wasn’t Hales still in charge of the bureaus when they slashed active transpo?

            Novick lobbied pretty freakin hard for the income tax before folding and switching to gas, possibly at Hales’s insistence.

            Not trying to blame Charlie for everything, lord knows Novick made mistakes. I think on balance he was excellent, and got more so as time went by and (as Michelle says) he smelled where the bullshit is in all this stuff.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

            • soren August 10, 2018 at 2:28 pm

              As I recall, Novick had been given PBOT at that point. Novick also communicated in the comments on BP that a major reason for abandonment of the income tax proposal was the decision by the PBA to actively oppose it (and seek to refer it to the ballot). I view the abandonment of the income tax proposal as a capitulation to regressive interests. Given the changing political environment in PDX, I also maintain that a progressive income tax had a decent chance of being passed.

              Recommended Thumb up 0

            • David Hampsten August 10, 2018 at 11:10 pm

              I served on the PBOT Budget Advisory Committee from 2009-2015. The entire PBOT budget was slashed repeatedly, year after year, starting in 2008 (remember the Great Recession?). 2009 & 2010 were especially bad years, when the city stopped maintaining local streets unless there was a sinkhole, but there were cuts every year. Aside from $16 million for sidewalks in East and SW Portland, the active transportation budget was completely gutted by 2012, with regular reductions during previous years. PBOT went from being an 800-person agency to 700.

              At root, the reason for the cuts were simple – transportation maintenance and basic infrastructure was always a low priority for Portland residents and elected officials, at least since 1988 when the Transportation Utility License Fee, which was designed specifically to pay for street maintenance needed because of utility companies continuously ripping the streets, was slashed from the get go, with PBOT today getting only 2.2% of the $70 million generated every year, and the other bureaus such as Police, Fire, Park, etc the rest. Every year the streets deteriorate a little bit more, inflation eats up the value of dollars “saved,” and now the city has over $1 Billion in its street maintenance backlog.

              Blaming a city commissioner, be it Adams, Novick, or Eudaly, is pointless. It’s YOU, voting and tax-paying residents of Portland who are to blame. You keep refusing to pay more taxes and you keep voting in elected officials who prioritize arts over roads, bike share over bike infrastructure, riot control over dealing with bike theft.

              By the way, you are both wrong, the cuts started under Adams, who was both Mayor and Transportation Commissioner. He gutted the bike program (and much else) to avoid laying off underpaid unionized laborers at PBOT and to build sidewalks in the most sidewalk-deficient areas of the city.

              Recommended Thumb up 3

              • soren August 13, 2018 at 9:35 am

                Hi David, I’m aware that Adams also cut the active transportation budget but this does not make my claim that Novick also cut this budget untrue. Like Novick, Adams is a product of the donor-class political establishment. I never supported or voted for any of these people.

                I don’t view “roads”, bike theft, or bike share as major priorities. IMO, this city has far more urgent problems, including, our housing affordability crisis, a chronic pattern
                of violence and civil rights violations by the portland police, and traffic violence that occurs disproportionately in areas where marginalized folk live.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty August 8, 2018 at 11:57 pm

        We have a pretty sorry lot as far as commissioners to head PBOT go. I think Wheeler should have kept it himself. Second choice would be Fritz, not because I think she’d be great, but mostly because I think she wouldn’t screw it up. Yes, I know she doesn’t want people riding bikes on the sidewalks downtown… but then, neither do I.

        Recommended Thumb up 9

        • X August 12, 2018 at 12:34 pm

          Can we say Fritz held bike funding hostage because she didn’t want people to ride on sidewalks downtown? Even though there’s no connection, or possibly a negative correlation? Do people ride on the sidewalk because they’re selfish? Maybe it’s because they don’t feel safe on the street.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Alex Reedin August 8, 2018 at 1:21 pm

      I’m pretty bullish on Eudaly for transportation (surprisingly, more so than for housing!). In addition to the BikePortland comment, a quote of hers in (I think?) an Oregonian article about outer Division was something to the effect of “Anyone out there who thought that because I deeply understand the perspective of car-dependent people, I’ll be on the side of speed on our roadways, was completely mistaken.”

      I think she gets the fact that non-car transportation has the potential to bring huge net benefits to Portland and sizeable increases in equity/fairness. I also think that, because she is publically known as being car-dependent for many trips for her son, she has the additional advantage (beyond Novick) of having built-in credibility as a “reasonable person rather than an anti-car zealot.”

      Recommended Thumb up 12

    • soren August 8, 2018 at 1:53 pm

      I have a different recollection of that exchange. I recall Eudaly stating that she was cautious about development without dedicated parking due to its impact on people with different abilities and seniors. I completely understand why Eudaly made this statement because there is a widespread perception that some active transportation advocates can be dismissive of the impact of reforms on people with different abilities. One striking illustration of this lack of empathy among enthusiasts and advocates were the many bigoted comments on bike portland suggesting that Eudaly’s adaptive bikeshare program was some sort of secret plot to kill bikeshare.

      Biketown is still around and Eudaly’s adaptive bikeshare pilot program was so successful that it was renewed for 2018:

      https://nextcity.org/daily/entry/portland-adaptive-bikeshare

      https://bikeportland.org/2018/01/02/portlands-adaptive-bike-rental-program-will-return-in-2018-263303

      Recommended Thumb up 7

      • I wear many hats August 9, 2018 at 9:02 am

        I agree here. I rarely drive, but blanket auto bans and parking restrictions fire up the driving base, and further stymie any incremental changes that make all road users safer. If anyone thinks that street reform will be successful by anything other than “death by a 1000 papercuts” fashion they are deluding themselves. Chloe Eudaly may actually be the open-minded leader running PBOT that Portland needs.

        Recommended Thumb up 5

        • soren August 13, 2018 at 9:41 am

          “death by a thousand paper cuts” is exactly what we should be doing. however, instead of this pragmatic approach we have a liberal political establishment that prefers grand unfunded gestures and is petrified by the smallest hints of push back from a few angry “neighbors”.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Ed August 8, 2018 at 11:01 am

    Portland really needs a strong leader at the regional table. Congestion pricing, a 2020 regional transportation bond, battles over freeways, orphan highways….I hope Eudaly can represent her constituents because Clackamas and Washington counties are chomping at the bit.

    Recommended Thumb up 12

    • nuovorecord August 10, 2018 at 9:40 am

      This. This cannot be understated.

      Recommended Thumb up 1

  • Terry D-M August 8, 2018 at 11:22 am

    I’m excited about this decision. I have had several very positive meetings and discussions with her since she entered public life. I believe she will be great on multimodal issues. She was responsive to bikeway infrastructure and safe street suggestions when she came to a SE Uplift board meeting last year. If she does not understand completely, she knows to ask questions and has the patience to hear the whole picture.

    As Co-Chair of Portland’s largest neighborhood coalition, I have been impressed by her progressive reforms at the now Office of Community and Civic life, which is where we are funded through. She surrounds herself with a smart and diverse group of advisors. I was hoping the mayor would give her PBOT.

    Terry Dublinski-Milton
    Co Chair SE Uplift, and long time BikePortland commentator…. I interacted a lot more in the past, before I was drafted to help run the organization.

    Recommended Thumb up 18

    • dave August 8, 2018 at 5:44 pm

      The NW Examiner has a different opinion of her handling of the Office of Community and Civic life: http://nwexaminer.com/1808-2

      Recommended Thumb up 10

      • J_R August 9, 2018 at 7:06 am

        Thanks for this link to the article in NW Examiner that describes in detail Eudaly’s approach to governance, process, and respect. I think it is a must read.

        Recommended Thumb up 6

        • I wear many hats August 9, 2018 at 9:13 am

          The NW examiner is known as a pet project for anti bike and NIMBY Portlanders, not exactly known for robust journalistic integrity

          Recommended Thumb up 9

          • Jeff August 9, 2018 at 9:43 am

            Name me a news source known for its robust journalistic integrity, and we’ll find one that aligns with your viewpoints.

            Recommended Thumb up 6

            • Alex Reedin August 9, 2018 at 1:22 pm

              OK, I’m going to fight back against this neo-relativist talking point. There are such things as objective facts and reliable sourcing, and there are news sources that report based on those things. Just as there have been for decades. For example, regardless of political persuasion, a careful look at the facts will find that both the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post do a reasonably good job of reporting based on the best available information in their news sections.

              The fact that there are now widely-consumed “news” sources such as Infowars, Occupy Democrats, etc. that mostly report false or misleading stories doesn’t make the quality of every other news source a case of “in the eye of the beholder.” It just means that some sites are not to be trusted, and others are, and it’s incumbent on people who don’t want to be hoodwinked to find out which is which.

              Recommended Thumb up 11

            • David Hampsten August 10, 2018 at 11:14 pm

              The Economist.

              Recommended Thumb up 1

          • Middle of The Road Guy August 13, 2018 at 10:43 am

            One should read multiple sources with different opinions, rather than sources that allow one to confirm one’s bias.

            I’m no fan of Fox or other conservative news outlets, but I read them anyways to see how others are thinking.

            Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty August 8, 2018 at 11:32 pm

      I guess this is where we’ll learn whether Eudaly was craftily biding her time, waiting for her opportunity to usher in the progressive era of transportation those of us who voted for her were banking on, or whether her tenure at PBOT will be yet more low level incompetence and pettiness. I’m hopeful, but not encouraged.

      Recommended Thumb up 7

  • ray August 8, 2018 at 11:31 am

    I’m kind of a one-issue guy when it comes to portland transport I was a cab driver for ten years. When Novick, Saltzman, and Hales voted to let ride share in (completely deregulating a multi-million dollar industry that had always followed the city’s previously strict regulations) it personally affected my business and that of many of my friends. Fritz and Fish voted against allowing ride-share. When Wheeler came in, he should have put Eudaly in from the get go, not because she’s a transportation expert but because she was the only one available that hadn’t cast a vote for or against ride-share. And to me that was one of the main reasons Novick probably got voted out and possibly a reason why Hales didn’t run for re-elect. Instead Wheeler had Saltzman run transport. Maybe if Eudaly can take her knowledge and interest in housing and apply that to transport she can do some good. Can’t be worse choice than Saltzman.

    Recommended Thumb up 4

  • PDXPolicyWonk August 8, 2018 at 11:40 am

    This is going to be a disaster. Chloe and Marshall like to talk a big talk when it suits them but are crap at actual negotiation in the public sector, staying focused on bureau priorities, getting things done, and treating those with opppsing viewpoints (and power) with professionalism, decorum, and the respect needed to get to yes. She’s been an utter disaster at BDS alienating herself from city staff and stakeholders as well as citizens, decided hiring $700k in “social media and graphic designers” was more important than prudently spending city budget towards fixing BDS systemic and functional problems, and seems more interested in playing media appearance social justice warrior around protests and diverting her staff to work on her pet causes rather than focus on her bureau assignments. In addition she’s hired totally unqualified staff who have no clue what they are doing and won’t challenge her on anything leading to a totally lame duck and weak Commission office. Expect her to get teamed by ODOT, Trimet, Port of Portland, CES Industrial Council, Port of Portland and pretty much Amy other big power players in the city transportation game. I personally think Ted set her up for failure to tank her politically because she’s been a damaging thorn in his side from day one and he’s fed up. But if a little free transport 101 “learning on the job” gives her confidence she knows more than than true long term professionals and advocates, good for her self esteem I guess.

    Recommended Thumb up 48

    • ugh August 8, 2018 at 4:04 pm

      Comment of the month right there!

      Recommended Thumb up 12

    • soren August 8, 2018 at 7:08 pm

      What a weird coincidence.

      There is a landlord who goes by “PDXPolicyWonk” and has posted countless comments excoriating Chloe Eudaly due to passage of the mandatory relocation assistance ordinance. I’m sure “PDXPolicyWonk’s” feelings for Eudaly will only strengthen as the additional tenant protections being worked on become law!

      Recommended Thumb up 10

      • Doug Hecker August 8, 2018 at 8:33 pm

        Yep, Chloe has done very little in terms of items that actually work. Sitting next to Ted while they ask the ICE protestors looks neat but didn’t mean much. She ran on housing when housing was a hot topic…. I think why we’ve learned from her is that she is great at tossing out unrealistic ideas while others get to help her pay for them. Oh, still waiting on a few replies from you but I won’t hold my breath.

        Recommended Thumb up 14

        • soren August 9, 2018 at 8:57 am

          You will get no response from me because you’ve made your bad faith evident by falsely accusing me of “throwing fits” at public meetings without being able to provide any details (which I find to be hilarious, BTW).

          Recommended Thumb up 4

          • Pat Lowell August 9, 2018 at 12:26 pm

            LOL at your response to Doug saying that he will get no response from you.

            Recommended Thumb up 15

            • soren August 9, 2018 at 1:28 pm

              To his questions.

              Recommended Thumb up 1

            • Doug Hecker August 9, 2018 at 10:45 pm

              Pat, thanks a million.

              But in general, I guess I’ll have to email Roger for his interpretation of what happened at the Lincoln Greenway Open House? I mean, since it was pretty evident that someone was clearly throwing a fit.
              I do enjoy those who have selective memories as they can freely act and say whatever it is when ever they like… well… kind of what we see from the White House.
              Also, I enjoyed a new term, Safety Nannyism, which also seems to fit everything that one would rather discard than value. Like the comments I read from a recent post where someone said they already discarded three broken helmets due to accidents. Ill have to remember that phrase next time I pass by that one person when they are giving bike tours on NW Couch.

              Recommended Thumb up 1

          • Middle of The Road Guy August 13, 2018 at 10:46 am

            Clearly you seem to have a behavioral pattern other people recognize through experience.

            Recommended Thumb up 1

      • Middle of The Road Guy August 13, 2018 at 10:45 am

        OMG, someone who owns a property and rents it out!

        MUST be a bad person.

        Recommended Thumb up 1

        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty August 13, 2018 at 10:53 am

          Without landlords there would be no tenants.

          Recommended Thumb up 1

  • John Liu August 8, 2018 at 1:21 pm

    Is there a list somewhere of all the new bureau assignments that are known?

    Recommended Thumb up 1

    • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) August 8, 2018 at 4:51 pm

      Hi John.. You can read Wheeler’s executive order about the bureaus here.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

      • John Liu August 8, 2018 at 5:44 pm

        Thanks.

        It seems as if the Mayor is concentrating all power/responsibility that has anything to do with real estate, developers, investment and development in his own office. That is Portland Housing Bureau, Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, Prosper Portland (formerly Portland Development Commission), and Bureau of Development Services. As well as Budget, Police, Attorney, Govt Relations. The reason to have one person hold all of those reins is unclear, but it is clear it will be a extremely heavy load for his office to manage.

        Recommended Thumb up 3

        • Dan A August 8, 2018 at 6:35 pm

          Maybe that’s where the best kickbacks & campaign contributions come from, who knows?

          Recommended Thumb up 6

        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty August 8, 2018 at 11:34 pm

          Prosper Portland will always be the PDC. They’re still as old school, backroom, and unaccountable as they’ve ever been. Don’t let the new name fool you.

          Recommended Thumb up 5

        • Jeff August 9, 2018 at 9:46 am

          The mayor should have all the power and responsibility concentrated in his or her office – this ridiculous form of city government that we’re burdened with has led to a number of problems, and every former mayor ends up blaming it for their failed visions.

          Recommended Thumb up 3

          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 9, 2018 at 10:43 am

            It can work this way — Wheeler could assign all bureaus to himself, then we’d have a more traditional council with a mayor and 4 at-large members. All it would take is the stroke of a pen.

            Recommended Thumb up 4

          • David Hampsten August 10, 2018 at 11:19 pm

            As opposed to a city manager who controls ALL bureaus, who is appointed to their position? How is that democratic?

            Recommended Thumb up 1

  • jeff August 8, 2018 at 1:25 pm

    **Comment deleted because it was insulting and mean. Jeff. If you want to add your voice to this discussion, please find a way to do it that’s constructive. Thanks. – Jonathan ***

    Recommended Thumb up 3

  • tee August 8, 2018 at 2:15 pm

    Beyond disappointing, despite the fact she needed to be relieved of BDS. It is also very worrisome that she will have a role in hiring Treat’s replacement (if I read that correctly).

    Recommended Thumb up 14

  • Steve B. August 8, 2018 at 4:04 pm

    Really excited to see what PBOT does with Commissioner Eudaly in charge. I’m optimistic we will see good things to come with her leadership.

    Recommended Thumb up 5

  • Daniel August 8, 2018 at 4:13 pm

    “Replacing Treat will be just one of Eudaly’s big jobs. She’ll have to steer PBOT through a potentially tumultuous era that will include decisions about the role of electric scooters in our mobility mix, the future of our bike share system, and the passage and (hopefully) implementation of some the most significant bike infrastructure projects we’ve seen in years.”

    The closest thing to a policy she’s outlined on bike infrastructure spending is that it was hard for her to get people excited about “spending $$$ on bike paths”, because other things are more important. I’m not trying to be negative on Eudaly as head of PBOT, but at the same time I haven’t heard a single statement that outlined an actual direction she’d like to go when it comes to bike infra – mainly just other people saying “I think she’ll be great”.

    I’m sure that class at PSU is very useful, but in my opinion she’d learn much more commuting to and from PSU via bike a few times. Why not try a regular bike commute to learn about cycling issues, instead of a pre-planned group event? I commute from inner NE to downtown SW every day along with thousands of other Portlanders, Eudaly and staff are more than welcome to join us any time they want. It’s fun, cheap, fast, healthy, and occasionally terrifying (because downtown has almost no separated infrastructure and you WILL almost get right-hooked at least once).

    Recommended Thumb up 10

    • world's slowest mamil August 8, 2018 at 5:29 pm

      Occasionally terrifying? My sense of fear is mostly dead, but it’ll perk up a bit every time I ride through downtown. I’m happy that my home and office are both right on the 15 line, so I can just lazily take the bus.

      Anyway, I can’t imagine that Eudaly’s management of PBOT will be anything less than a mess, not just because of her poor performance managing BDS, but because taking a firm progressive stance with anything transportation-related is politically deadly. I’m sure she appreciates that, as it’s one of the big factors that made Novick a pariah and ultimately led to her landing her gig.

      I’m just thankful that it wasn’t handed to Fritz.

      Recommended Thumb up 9

  • Racer X August 8, 2018 at 5:01 pm

    No forecast here…but buckle up as it will be exciting either way.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • dave August 8, 2018 at 5:41 pm

    Chloe lacks management and leadership skills. She won because Novick turned off so many people. I haven’t seen her so much in office so far. My expectations are low.

    Recommended Thumb up 16

    • Toby Keith August 8, 2018 at 7:07 pm

      And let’s face it, Wheeler became mayor because Hales was so bad. it’s just politics in Portland unfortunately.

      Recommended Thumb up 7

      • Steve Scarich August 9, 2018 at 8:50 am

        I’m guessing the odds of Ted running again are somewhere around 5:1 against. So, all those concerned about transportation issues should be planning now for their next decent candidate.

        Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Ernie A August 8, 2018 at 5:55 pm

    I’m glad to see someone who recognizes that active transportation can be just as exclusive as car culture, and perhaps can get us moving multi-modally. Too many people give too little consideration to disabled and elderly needs in advocating for active transport and mass transit is not a catch all solution.

    Recommended Thumb up 4

  • dat August 8, 2018 at 8:46 pm

    I would like to see free biketown for Portland public schools student and lifting of the ban on micro-trenching for municipal broadband.

    Recommended Thumb up 2

    • ugh August 9, 2018 at 1:00 pm

      I want a pony.

      Recommended Thumb up 6

  • PDXPolicyWonk August 8, 2018 at 9:23 pm

    Soren (Portland Tenants United): If owning a small duplex for 20 years and renting it significantly under market rates to lower income tenants for 20 years (and the sane tenants for over 10) makes me a landlord, then whew boy you sure “exposed” me. I own a rental property. Big whoop.

    Anyway, my concern with Eudaly (and Council) and the relo ordinance is that it is causing larger overall harm than good to renters, especially those under 80% MFI and really especially those under 60% MFI as rents continue to be unaffordable despite new units coming on board which should be lowering rates but instead we are still seeing (and will continue to) 9.9% annual increases for many renters so Tenants are covering their own relo fees over time as well as small mom & pops and local groups (Milepost 5 and that sad apartment where the renters are trying to strike) continue to sell out to large out of state investment groups who are getting those low income renters out where they can’t find replacement housing, while the city is floundering on sustainable and large scale. affordability fixes. The relo ordinance is flawed policy with bad side effects for our city’s renters. And that’s my concern.

    As a property owner though one of those side effects is it continues to add to the increase in my property values so if it becomes law, it really doesn’t affect me except in the positive, sadly at the expense of renters but that was Eudaly’s mandate and the city’s decision. I should probably send Eudaly a big expensive bouquet of flowers thanking her for continuing to add to my retirement nest egg at such high rates.

    Anyway, that’s neither here nor there. The issue and concerns are she’s a horrible combo of arrogant, ignorant, ineffective and unprofessional to the goals she wants to achieve and the needs and goals for our city as well as the skills needed for the job, and this will most likely carry over to PBOT as well. She has become in a very short time wildly disliked both within the city and with other needed stakeholders, but also with voters and that’s a huge problem for effective leadership in the public sector. Things are so bad at BDS under her mismanagement that Ted was tired of the ongoing flood of city staff and citizen complaints as well as her irresponsible spending, so he yanked it from her & put her in the big arena with the lions at PBOT where she’ll need to pull herself and her floundering city hall staff together quickly or will tank because she’s dealing with the big guns now who won’t tolerate her bs. No one who matters cares much about ONI or the office of feel good rhetoric or whatever she renamed it. That’s why it’s always assigned to the weak, incompetent Council members like Eudaly (and before that Fritz).

    Thanks!

    Recommended Thumb up 30

    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty August 8, 2018 at 11:11 pm

      The Office of Feel Good Rhetoric has kind of a nice ring to it…

      Recommended Thumb up 12

    • soren August 9, 2018 at 9:34 am

      “If owning a small duplex for 20 years”

      yeah…and i distinctly remember your online fury when you realized that Portland Tenants United helped push through an amendment that requires you to pay the moving expenses of any tenant that you may displace WITHOUT CAUSE.

      tenant advocates have been fighting to enable the city to inventory rental leases, require landlords to register their units, and to collect rental housing data for many years. small landlords, like pdxpolicywonk, have fiercely opposed this. in fact, the head of their lobbyist organization recently quit the rental services commission in a ridiculous flounce, in part, due to policy work on these issues.

      “and the relo ordinance is that it is causing larger overall harm than good to renters, especially those under 80% MFI and really especially those under 60% MFI”

      data, evidence, links, anything? (also, see above.)

      “The relo ordinance is flawed policy with bad side effects for our city’s renters.”

      so says the landlord who ranted about how angry they were about having to pay the moving costs of tenants they may displace WITHOUT CAUSE.

      “to sell out to large out of state investment groups”

      Like most of your unsupported complaints, this is incredibly misleading.

      Milepost 5 was sold to an affordable housing provider who is working to make all the units available to people earning less than <60% median family income. I believe that even affordable housing providers are landlords who do not always have the best interest of tenant at heart so I fiercely oppose their tactics and their approach.

      In fact, my union organized Milepost 5 tenants and is fighting for their right to "remain" and their right to "recourse". The affordable housing provider has already caved in to some of our demands by offering to provide thousands of dollars in reolocation assistance to tenants who do not qualify for federal low income housing thresholds (even though they claim they are not legally required to do so).

      When tenants organize, we win!

      https://www.wweek.com/news/city/2018/08/02/affordable-housing-developer-threatens-to-push-out-artists-and-hike-rents-at-milepost-5/

      Recommended Thumb up 2

      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty August 9, 2018 at 10:55 am

        Unless motivated by raising the rent, it is really never in the landlord’s interest to evict a good tenant. Therefore, I conclude that most “without cause” evictions are in fact “with reason”. I would support allowing “no cause” evictions with the proviso that the landlord maintain the same rent for the new tenant for the first year, after which it would be subject to the normal limitations on increases. That would let landlords get new tenants, but it would cost them a year’s worth of potentially increased rent.

        Every new tenant under the current system is paying for their relocation fee in the form of higher rent (a kind of invisible relo security deposit). Tenants who move of their own volition don’t get it back, and long-term tenants may end up paying many multiples of the relo-fee, unless the landlord drops the rent after the first year.

        Recommended Thumb up 9

        • soren August 9, 2018 at 12:34 pm

          Therefore, I conclude that most “without cause” evictions are in fact “with reason”. I would support allowing “no cause” eviction

          Your empathy for the many long-time tenants facing mass eviction due to hot-money multifamily housing speculation is stunning.

          No cause evictions have been a chronic issue:

          https://www.wweek.com/news/2016/05/25/what-its-like-to-get-evicted-and-not-know-why/

          More recently, this california multi-millionaire has threatened to mass vulnerable immigrant and refugee tenants without cause (other than greed):

          https://www.wweek.com/news/city/2018/03/28/a-portland-apartment-complex-became-a-refuge-for-immigrants-its-new-california-owner-is-offering-them-quick-cash-to-get-out/

          It’s even more ironic that just yesterday you falsely claimed that I support or don’t care about speculation-induced displacement. Projection.

          “Every new tenant under the current system is paying for their relocation fee in the form of higher rent”

          Ironically, your argument that no landlord needs to evict someone undermines this argument. I will also note that you failed to provide evidence or data to support either claim. Sadly, we don’t have comprehensive data because landlord lobbyists and real estate speculators have fought tooth and nail to block the city from counting rental units, registering rental units, and recording leases. These things are all standard practice in cities that have governments and bureaus that are less co-opted by developers and landlords. There is some mildly good news, on this front however. Due to the efforts of many groups fighting for tenant rights (including PTU), a new law was passed just a few weeks ago that will require landlords to register their units. The comments from angry landlords in that piece are amusing, perhaps because this law will be invaluable to tenants and those fighting for housing equity:

          “According to today’s release from Wheeler’s office, the registration system might help inform things such as safety inspections, rental unit health, landlord and tenant education training, low income tenant legal representation, and rent stabilization.

          https://www.wweek.com/bars/news-bars/2018/07/24/portland-city-council-to-vote-on-a-rental-registration-system/.

          Housing and tenant advocacy non-profit’s have all reported a marked drop in queries about no-cause evictions. For example, testimony at city hall indicated that calls about no-cause evictions to CAT’s renter’s rights hotline dropped markedly following passage of the temporary relocation assistance law. Numbers on the new relocation assistance law that was just passed a few months ago are, obviously, not available.

          Recommended Thumb up 0

          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty August 9, 2018 at 12:57 pm

            Of course no cause evictions are dropping after passing the relo rule; it makes it much more expensive to evict and raise the rent. I totally support policies to discourage that practice. That’s not what I wrote about.

            Also, I’m not opposed to registering rental units, so please don’t accuse me of such.

            Recommended Thumb up 4

            • soren August 9, 2018 at 1:27 pm

              What I wrote: “Sadly, we don’t have comprehensive data because landlord lobbyists and real estate speculators have fought tooth and nail to block the city from counting rental units, registering rental units, and recording leases.”

              So you are a landlord lobbyist or real estate speculator???

              Recommended Thumb up 0

              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty August 9, 2018 at 1:30 pm

                Please reread the part of my post where I wrote: “I’m not opposed to registering rental units”. That was not intended to suggest I oppose registering rental units.

                Recommended Thumb up 2

              • soren August 9, 2018 at 2:28 pm

                OK…I’ll spell it out: My comment did not refer to you because I know that you are not a landlord lobbyist or real estate speculator.

                Recommended Thumb up 0

            • Doug Hecker August 9, 2018 at 10:49 pm

              I thought this was a blog about biking…

              Recommended Thumb up 12

              • Middle of The Road Guy August 13, 2018 at 10:50 am

                Soren frequently redirects discussions to housing equity. Now that you’ve noticed it, you’ll see the pattern.

                Recommended Thumb up 2

      • Middle of The Road Guy August 13, 2018 at 10:49 am

        Soren, do you rent or own?

        Recommended Thumb up 1

    • Christopher Mommsen August 9, 2018 at 10:31 am

      If you are able to raise someone’s rent by 9.9% without them moving in this market you were probably significantly undercharging in the first place.

      Recommended Thumb up 4

      • John Liu August 9, 2018 at 12:43 pm

        “In this market”? There are two markets in Portland. There is a glut of high priced/luxury rentals and a shortage of low priced/affordable rentals. Raising rent by 9.9% on a recently built high priced building will result in the affluent tenants walking to the adjacent newly built building which has plenty of vacancies and is offering months of free rent and sparkling new amenities. Raising rent by 9.9% on an older low priced building will result in the lower income tenants suffering/going without and/or being displaced to outside of Portland.

        Recommended Thumb up 6

  • Brian August 9, 2018 at 10:37 am

    It will be interesting to see what happens with the ORCMP with Mr. Fish as head of BES and Parks. I am cautiously optimistic…..

    Recommended Thumb up 1

    • I wear many hats August 9, 2018 at 11:03 am

      Seeing how Mr. Fish was instrumental in kyboshing bike access in River View despite the Metro activity designations leaves little to be hoped for. Fritz took the brunt of that blowback at River View but it wasn’t done without the other Councilors’ support. He has been in the pockets of West Hills residents’ pet causes for years and the ORCMP will likely lay fallow under his watch. Ride the trails we’ve got, they are the only place that will be free of the scooters. I hope he proves me wrong, but I won’t wait till I’m retired to ride in Portland.

      Recommended Thumb up 3

  • Jim Lee August 9, 2018 at 3:17 pm

    If I were mayor of this fair city I’d not take any bureaus for myself and let the other four on Council divvy them up among themselves.

    With nothing to do but run Council meetings and prepare the budget I’d slink about City Hall spying on the commissioners and cracking a very long whip to keep them in line.

    And productive!

    Recommended Thumb up 1

  • PDXPolicyWonk August 10, 2018 at 3:07 pm

    There’s one other area of concern about Eudaly and PBOT a union rep mentioned to me today. PBOT has a huge number of Union (rather than excempt) city employees and their Union is considered to be one of the toughest, hardcore & powerful public unions in our City. Eudaly is going to have to show that she’s not only strategic and strong enough to match them but that she can get their respect and negotiate with them and hire top level staff with chops to do so otherwise she’s going to get eaten alive. Frankly, given her behavior on Council, in her bureaus and with the public regarding BDS and the large amount of complaints with the mayor and Auditor filed against her I don’t think she’s got what it takes to survive this assignment. But maybe I’ll be proven wrong. Probably not though.

    Recommended Thumb up 1

    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty August 10, 2018 at 3:15 pm

      When she’s done mopping the floor with the PBOT unions, it will be on to the police bureau, to deal with the even tougher, hardcorer, and powerfuler police union. And those guys have guns! Go Chloe!

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • David Hampsten August 10, 2018 at 11:30 pm

      There’s actually 3 unions or associations at PBOT: a laborers union for the maintenance and construction workers; and two separate professional “associations” (really unions), one for engineers, the other for various other professional staff. People at the very top (management) and at the very bottom (interns and seasonal workers) are hardly or not unionized at all.

      Recommended Thumb up 2

    • Middle of The Road Guy August 13, 2018 at 10:51 am

      I am certain that a few snarky comments here and there and demanding to be called “Commissioner” will be all that is needed!

      Recommended Thumb up 0

  • PDXPolicyWonk August 10, 2018 at 4:16 pm

    Eudaly isn’t savvy or strong enough to stand up to any Union. BDS’ pretty much helped shove her out the door there, she’s like a gnat to the Police Union, and I seriously doubt she’ll be able to stand up to PBOT’s Union either. It’s nice to have an elected official you believe in. Alas, her past 18 months in office show a very different reality of someone who is considered to be a joke and more of a minor annoyance than anything of substance inside the city sausage factory. Maybe she can hire more graphic designer friends to rebrand her bureaus with new logos and social media staff to run Facebook accounts though. Also, Eudaly always toots how pro union she is so it will be kind of goofy watching her try to suddenly be anti union.

    Recommended Thumb up 2

    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty August 10, 2018 at 4:36 pm

      Maybe she needs more of the Sanrio crew around. We’re like the Sopranos, but for schoolgirls.

      Recommended Thumb up 1

  • David Hampsten August 10, 2018 at 11:34 pm

    Aside from Mayor Adams (who was also the Transportation Commissioner), no elected city commissioner has ever had the power to do much at PBOT. Generally, they were just along for the ride, so to speak. Even the PBOT Director’s powers are pretty limited. It’s the management of the divisions who have the real power over hiring and firing, policies being carried out (or not), and what gets paid for in the budget and implemented.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Peter W August 11, 2018 at 5:26 pm

    I don’t know Eudaly all that well, but it looks like she’s planning to put in the work to make the most of this assignment. I hope people with strong opinions (of any stripe) will do the work to find others with similar opinions and, Indivisible-style, reach out to try to share those collective opinions in person.

    https://www.indivisible.org

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Mark smith August 12, 2018 at 7:52 pm

    Clicky Freewheel
    Well, this is disappointing. Chloe has zero experience in transportation (let alone government in general…). This does not bode well for PBOT. Expect measures designed to punish landowners, etc. coming coon.Recommended 37

    Everyone has to start at zero. But.. you know. We get you already hate her. What if it wasn’t a her? Would you feel the same?

    Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty August 12, 2018 at 10:58 pm

      She’s not starting at zero — we can see how she might manage based on her record at BDS and ONI. No need to assume sexism.

      Recommended Thumb up 0

    • Middle of The Road Guy August 13, 2018 at 10:53 am

      Probably. Can’t women be equally incompetent as men?

      Recommended Thumb up 0