Saltzman staffer Brendan Finn hired by Governor Brown as transportation policy advisor

Posted on April 25th, 2018 at 2:43 pm.

Finn on his bike in 2008 and at Commissioner Saltzman’s side in 2010.
(Photos: J. Maus)

Portland Commissioner Dan Saltzman’s chief of staff has been hired by Oregon Governor Kate Brown. Brendan Finn, who’s worked with Saltzman since 1999, will be Brown’s new transportation policy advisor.
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City Council candidates talk transportation at packed forum

Posted on April 6th, 2018 at 12:06 pm.

(Photos: J. Maus/BikePortland)

Last night proved that while transportation might not be a top issue in Portland politics these days, it still brings out the largest crowds.

There was barely even standing room at the Lucky Lab Beer Hall last night for the City Council Candidate Forum on Transportation — an event co-hosted by Young Professionals in Transportation, Community Cycling Center, The Street Trust, Oregon Walks, and OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon. The crowd impressed Commissioner Nick Fish, who said in his opening remarks: “This is the largest turnout we’ve had for an event.”
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Your City Council Candidate Transportation Forum primer

Posted on April 5th, 2018 at 11:19 am.

Tonight.

Tonight is when many of us will hear what a new crop of Portland City candidates think about transportation for the very first time.

Before we all head over to the Forum on Transportation co-hosted by Community Cycling Center, OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon, Oregon Walks, The Street Trust, and YPT Portland (Young Professionals in Transportation), I wanted to at least give you a hint of where each candidate is coming from.
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City Council candidate transportation forum set for April 5th

Posted on March 12th, 2018 at 5:27 pm.

Six council candidates confirmed for the panel. Left to right: (top) Felicia Williams, Loretta Smith, Jo Ann Hardesty; (bottom) Stuart Emmons, Andrea Valderrama, Julia DeGraw.

It’s time to educate ourselves about the candidates running for Portland City Council.
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Oregon’s expanded bike tax passes out of committee with unanimous support

Posted on March 1st, 2018 at 2:08 pm.

Members of the Joint Transportation Committee who voted in favor of an expansion to Oregon’s bike tax.

Without a single word of debate, the nine members of the Joint Committee on Transportation voted in favor of an expansion of Oregon’s bike tax that will result in it covering more children’s bicycles. (UPDATE: As of Saturday, March 3rd the full Oregon House and Senate passed the bill with a total vote margin of 70-10. The bill now awaits Governor Brown’s signature.)

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Oregon mulls bike tax expansion that would include more kids bikes, recumbents, and folders

Posted on February 27th, 2018 at 12:50 pm.

This boys BMX bike is currently exempt from the tax. Lawmakers want to change that.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

The Oregon Legislature is considering dozens of changes to the major transportation bill they passed last year. Among them are two substantive changes to the $15 bike tax.

The Oregon Department of Revenue (DOR) thinks the existing tax is too complicated and they want to make sure it captures as many bicycles as possible.

In a nutshell, if House Bill 4059 is signed by Governor Brown, the tax will apply to more bicycles than before. The proposal has caught the ire of national bike industry leaders who have written a letter to lawmakers opposing the idea.
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Metro Council president candidate Lynn Peterson is doing a 24-city bike tour

Posted on February 6th, 2018 at 12:32 pm.

Lynn Peterson imitating public art during a bike tour of Gresham.
(Photo: Lynn Peterson for Metro President)

If you want to lead the agency that oversees the entire Portland metro region, you need an intimate understanding of the cities within it. What better way to gain that knowledge than from the seat of a bicycle?
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“Outrageous” to repeal tax break for 850,000 U.S. bicycle commuters, Rep. Blumenauer says

Posted on November 10th, 2017 at 11:56 am.

There is no more staunch defender of the Bicycle Commuter Tax Benefit, a current federal provision that allows people to exclude (a whopping) $20 a month from taxable income for “expenses related to regular bicycle commuting.”

So when emerged that the Senate GOP’s tax plan would kill it, while retaining a $255 monthly commute benefit for parking cars, we knew Oregon Congressman Earl Blumenauer would have something to say about it. After all, he authored the current benefit and championed its passage in 2008. To Blumenauer, it’s a simple matter of equity.
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Oregon Governor signs anti-profiling bill aimed at racially motivated traffic stops

Posted on August 18th, 2017 at 1:28 pm.

Crosswalk enforcement action NE Killingsworth-6

Starting next year, the Portland Police Bureau will be required to report traffic stop data to the State.
(Photo: J. Maus/BikePortland)

One of the many ways race intersects with transportation is with enforcement of traffic laws. National and local statistics show that black people are stopped and cited for road-use related violations at a higher rate than whites.

In their Unequal Justice series, Investigate West reported, “For everything from jaywalking to driving without a license, it pays to be white in Oregon if you run afoul of the law. What you really don’t want to be is black.”

Now there’s an Oregon law on the books that will give advocates and law enforcement officials new tools to analyze traffic stops and ultimately tackle racial profiling — or as Oregon law enforcement officials refer to it, “bias policing.”
[Read more…]

Baffled by veto threat, legislators and advocates lobby Governor Brown for reversal

Posted on August 9th, 2017 at 4:47 pm.

Don’t do it Governor!

A threat by Governor Kate Brown to veto a highly anticipated project in southwest Portland has been met with shock and bewilderment by advocates and legislators. Now with little time to spare before Brown acts on her stated intentions, an effort has begun to persuade her to change her mind.

Neighborhood advocates have been urging the City of Portland to make Southwest Capitol Highway safer 26 years. The City of Portland has raised about $10 million for a project that would finally build sidewalks, bikeways and make other updates to the street between Multnomah Village and Taylors Ferry Road. Thanks to the passage of House Bill 5006 last month, everyone expected an additional $2 million for a final, key segment of the project. Governor Brown’s inexplicable veto threat puts that funding in jeopardy.

Asked for comment this afternoon, Brown’s Communications Director Chris Pair offered no additional rationale for the threat beyond what was shared in a statement yesterday — that they felt the project should go through more vetting and evaluation and that it should have been included in the larger transportation package.

But that explanation doesn’t sit well with Senator Ginny Burdick, whose district is directly adjacent to the project. [Read more…]