City wide issues

EPA invitations

From the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency:

Welcome to Thursday, everyone! We have three updates and one reminder for you regarding the Portland Harbor Superfund Site:

1. *Next Wednesday, 7/8 at 6:30pm Pacific* RSVP Now! Virtual Portland Harbor Community Advisory Group (CAG) Meeting Information

  • Topic – Community Workshop on Making Portland Harbor Cleanup Information Accessible. This workshop will be hosted online by the Portland Harbor Community Advisory Group, the City of Portland, and the Oregon Department of State Lands

2. *Comment by next Wednesday, 7/8/2020* State Seeks Comment on Temporary Closure of Willamette Cove

  • View the news release from the Oregon Department of State Lands

3. *Recording & Materials Available* Follow-Up from the virtual June 10th Portland Harbor Public Forum. A recording of the Public Forum and all materials from this event are now available on EPA’s Portland Harbor website in the ‘Public Participation Opportunities’ section!

4. *Reminder* Photo Request for the Final Portland Harbor Community Involvement Plan (CIP)

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Please read below for more information about these items:

1.*Next Wednesday, 7/8 at 6:30pm Pacific* RSVP Now! Virtual Portland Harbor Community Advisory Group (CAG) Meeting Information

  • When: NextWednesday, July 8th at 6:30 pm
  • Topic:  Community Workshop on Making Portland Harbor Cleanup Information Accessible. Join the Portland Harbor Community Advisory Group, the City of Portland, and the Oregon Department of State Lands online July 8 at 6:30pm for a virtual workshop and share how YOU would like to learn about the river cleanup. RSVP to reserve your spot. Learn more here!
  • How: Virtually! Please RSVP to reserve your spot and receive information on how to attend the meeting!
    • Please Note:  The July 8 online workshop is focused on understanding community members’ information needs. Tribal governments, public agencies, businesses, and waterfront properties are encouraged to contact project manager Dawn.Sanders@portlandoregon.gov to learn about the input opportunities tailored for each of those audiences.

·        Have questions? Please email Jessica Terlikowski, City of Portland, Community Engagement Coordinator at jessica.terlikowski@portlandoregon.gov

2.*Comment by next Wednesday, 7/8/2020* State Seeks Comment on Temporary Closure of Willamette Cove. The Oregon Department of State Lands (DSL) is currently accepting public comments on a proposal to close Willamette Cove to boating and other river uses from mid-August through October 2020 to allow sediment and water samples to be collected. Please read below for more information:

  • Why is there a State comment period on Willamette Cove?  The Willamette Cove In-water Remedial Design Group (City of Portland, Oregon Department of State Lands, Port of Portland) are excited to start design work where they will determine how the approaches to address the contamination outlined in EPA’s cleanup plan for the Portland Harbor Superfund Site, such as capping and dredging, will be used. This first phase requires sediment and water samples to be collected by boats on the water. To facilitate these cleanup efforts and minimize health and safety risks to the public and project personnel, the Oregon Department of State Lands is considering closing the area mid-August through October 31, 2020.
  • When may I comment? The comment period is open June 8 through July 8. Comments must be received by July 8 to be considered.
  • How may I comment? Written comments may be submitted to DSL’s Richard Fitzgerald by email at richard.w.fitzgerald@dsl.state.or.us, or by mail at 775 Summer St. NE, Suite 100, Salem, Oregon 97301.
  • More information: 

3. *Recording & Materials Available* Follow-Up from the virtual June 10th Portland Harbor Public Forum. Thank you to everyone who attended the June 10th quarterly EPA Portland Harbor Public Forum (with DEQ and CAG support). A webinar recording and other materials from this event are now available both on EPA’s Portland Harbor website in the ‘Public Participation Opportunities’ section and below:

4. *Reminder* Photo Request for the Final Portland Harbor Community Involvement Plan (CIP):  Thank you to everyone who has already sent us photos! Even though the public feedback period is closed for the Portland Harbor CIP, EPA is still looking for high resolution photos to include throughout the CIP as we finalize the document. If you have photos that you would like to be considered, please send them along with the source of the photo to kprusia@triangleassociates.com.

Thank you!

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City wide issues

Homeless helpers recognized

Partnership between government and non-profit working to address issues of homelessness and public safety receives statewide recognition

Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare and Multnomah County Drainage District Partnership Recognized with Special Districts Association of Oregon (SDAO) Award

February 6, 2020 – Portland, Ore. – Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare and the Multnomah County Drainage District (MCDD) were recognized with an Outstanding Special District Program award by the Special Districts Association of Oregon (SDAO) for the organizations’ joint efforts to address safety and infrastructure issues through a Houseless Outreach & Coordination Pilot Project. The SDAO’s Awards Program recognizes innovative accomplishments by organizations that improve safety, public information and involvement in their communities.

The combination of increased housing costs, health care, and other factors have led to an increase in homelessness in metropolitan areas across the United States. With limited places to live, communities in the Portland-metropolitan area have resorted to camping along the Lower Columbia River and in areas protected by a series of federally authorized levee and water conveyance systems extending from North Portland to Troutdale. This increased activity has made it difficult for field employees to perform regular maintenance work, and in some instances, has caused unintentional damage to the levee system – posing greater flood risks for unhoused communities, thousands of residents, businesses, and some of the region’s most vital resources including the Columbia South Shore Well Field, a source of drinking water serving nearly a million Oregonians, and the Portland International Airport. In order to address these issues, MCDD and Cascadia formed a collaborative partnership and launched the Houseless Outreach & Coordination Pilot Project in 2019.

Through targeted outreach, education, and engagement, the project addressed safety concerns and minimized damage to flood risk-reduction systems with the added benefit of providing education and support services to individuals experiencing homelessness, as well as serving as a line of communication to vulnerable communities in low-lying areas during high water events. “The ability for our field crews to work closely with trained social service professionals on the ground allowed us to perform our core job functions while also gaining greater awareness of the conditions of people who are unhoused in our community,” said Randy Lyons, Operations Manager for MCDD. In addition to working with social services, the project also incorporated ongoing collaboration with other regional service organizations, law enforcement, government agencies, property owners, and the general public.

The project met its goal of improved safety and operations for MCDD and its systems, and expanded education and access to healthcare and housing services for individuals experiencing homelessness. With a total of 250 hours of outreach, MCDD and Cascadia made 148 contacts, provided education and information to 88 individuals, and enrolled nearly 20% of the individuals contacted in services over a period of six months. Additionally, in partnership with District staff, the program ensured the safety of approximately 50 individuals by prompting an evacuation from a low-lying peninsula during a high-water event in April 2019.

“When doing outreach in the community, our main goal is to connect with individuals who are struggling and help them get the support and resources they need,” said Kim James, Program Manager of Homeless Services at Cascadia. “We were thrilled to partner with MCDD on this unique program and offer our expertise in reaching individuals who are experiencing homelessness. Collaboration is a critical component to finding solutions to the issues we face in our community.”

The Houseless Outreach & Coordination Pilot Project represents the benefits of a partnership among public and non-profit sectors. The collaboration between MCDD and Cascadia prioritized compassion and human connection, and allowed a service-first approach in order to avoid traumatic experiences that often occur with the presence of law enforcement and regulatory entities. Looking forward, MCDD and Cascadia will continue to work together to develop strategies and plans that improve efficiency and safety in field operations, as well as health and housing outcomes for those experiencing homelessness.

The Special Districts Association of Oregon will host its annual awards program on Saturday, February 8, 2020 at the Seaside Convention Center in Seaside, Oregon. To learn more about the Houseless Outreach & Coordination Pilot Project, visit www.mcdd.org
 
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ABOUT CASCADIA BEHAVIORAL HEALTHCARE
Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare is a private, not-for-profit whose mission is to provide whole healthcare for people living with mental health and addiction challenges. For information on Cascadia’s comprehensive range of innovative, integrated clinical and housing support programs, visit: www.cascadiabhc.org.

Cascadia Contact:
Jennifer Moffatt
Senior Director of Communications
jennifer.moffatt@cascadiabhc.org
503-402-8117                 
 
ABOUT THE MULTNOMAH COUNTY DRAINAGE DISTRICT
The Multnomah County Drainage District (MCDD) helps protect lives and property from flooding by operating and maintaining flood management systems for nearly 13,000 acres of land along the Columbia Slough and the lower Columbia River. These systems include: 27 miles of levee, 12 pump stations, and 45 miles of sloughs, streams, and culverts. To learn more about MCDD’s flood risk-reduction services visit www.mcdd.org.

MCDD Contact:
Karen Lorena Carrillo
Public Affairs & Community Relations Manager
kcarrillo@mcdd.org 
503.281.5675 ext. 302 Want to change how you receive these emails?
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