Sources Say: Portland isn't diverse, but it's integrated
Portland is among the least-diverse metropolitan areas in the nation. But its neighborhoods are among the most integrated.
Those are among the surprising findings of the most recent report by influential local economist Joe Cortright on his thoughtful urban planning blog, City Observatory. Titled "America's Most Diverse Mixed Income Neighborhoods," the report crunched U.S. Census data on race, ethnicity and household income to identify the nation's most diverse mixed-income neighborhoods.
Not surprisingly, the report found that only a little over 1 percent of neighborhoods in the Portland-Vancouver-Beaverton area were that diverse, among the least of all major metropopolitan areas. But it also found that nearly 95 percent of all Portland neighborhoods are as diverse as the entire metropolitan area, among the highest share in the country.
You can find the report at cityobservatory.org.
Peterson reflects Metro's growing influence
In what is perhaps a sign of Metro's growing influence in the region, Lynn Peterson raised more than $287,000 in cash and in-kind contributions for her successful campaign for council president, even though she faced no serious opposition.
Peterson won the election outright in the May 2018 primary with 84 percent of the vote. Her only opponent, Michael Langley, who filed at the last minute, did not report raising any money for his campaign.
Peterson's backers, who have continued contributing into June, include many businesses potentially affected by the regional government's decisions, such as HDR Engineering ($1,000), a consulting firm that works on transit projects, and Waste Management ($1,000), the large recycling and garbage hauling firm that operates the landfill in Arlington where Metro sends most of the region's trash.
As current Metro President Tom Hughes enters his last six months in office, Metro is committed to two new and expensive initiatives — the $652.8 million affordable housing bond the council has referred to the November 2018 ballot and a yet-to-be-determined regional measure to help fund the proposed Southwest Corridor MAX Line, to be referred to the November 2020 ballot.
Affordable housing bond fundraising starts
Contributions already are being made to the political action committee supporting the $625.8 million affordable housing bond Metro has referred to the 2018 ballot, even though the time to challenge the ballot title has not yet passed.
Three contributions have been made by politicians who won in the May 2018 primary election and finished their races with campaign surpluses. Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury gave $10,000 on May 29. Portland city Commissioner Nick Fish contributed $5,000 on May 21. And Metro President-elect Lynn Peterson donated $1,000 on June 5.
In addition, outgoing Metro President Tom Hughes gave $5,000 on May 30. All four are named as controlling members of the committee in the state filing records.