Tuesday, July 17, 2001

SUMMARY NOTES: Guidelines Review, Empowerment & Assessment Team, GREAT

City of Portland, Office of Neighborhood Involvement

Members Present:
Nancy Chapin Alliance of Portland Neighborhood Business Associations
Bud Breithaupt Central Northeast Neighbors
Cathy Crawford University Park Neighborhood Association
Raymond Hites Lents Neighborhood Association
Moshe Lenske Woodstock Neighborhood Association
Stanley Lewis Downtown Community Association
Mark Sieber Neighbors West/Northwest
Leonard Gard Southwest Neighborhoods, Inc.
William Warren Central Northeast Neighbors
Patricia Gardner Pearl District Neighborhood Association
Brian Hoop Office of Neighborhood Involvement
Joleen Classen ONI
David Lane ONI
Ruth Spetter City of Portland, Attorney's Office

Members Absent:
Jerry Powell - excused Goose Hollow Foothills League
Rey Espana Multnomah County Aging/Disabilities Services
Lanita Duke Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods

Decisions by this group are subject to change at future meetings.
Opportunities for public input at the end of meeting and future workshops.

I. Notes/changes
· Committee member requests need to mail notes to all staff and neighborhood association chairs.
· Cathy Crawford needs USPS mail for her minutes/agendas.
· Go to http://www.myportlandneighborhood.org under resources for summary notes from last meeting.

II. Proposal to meet more often
After discussion group agreed to meet twice a month starting Tuesday, July 31, 2001. After that meeting on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday morning each month.

III. Discussion on direction to take for vision/guiding statement and code requirements
Ruth Spetter reviewed city code, chapter 3.96 addressing specific things that need to be dealt with in the ONI guidelines including:
· Membership
· Boundaries
· Grievances
· Dissent
· Abiding by applicable statutes, i.e. open meeting laws
· Notice of meetings
· Etc.
Discussion on question of why were district coalitions set up in the first place? Primarily to pool finances and resources, bring together representatives of associations and to help facilitate dialogue between neighborhood activists and city bureau planning efforts.
Discussion on question if neighborhood associations are required to raise money? No. ONI city money is allocated for neighborhood associations which have chosen to direct those funds towards district coalitions. They are free to seek additional grants. Many neighborhood associations also fundraise but don't have to.
This raised issue of whether the guidelines requirements for neighborhoods and coalitions was too onerous considering funding from the city for basic communication and outreach has been flat for 10 years. Lack of funds has limited group's ability to realistically meet some requirements.
Discussion on question if the existing guidelines were cross-referenced against city code by city attorneys to insure that the guidelines meet the legal requirements of the city code? Yes, in 1998 city attorneys reviewed this issue.
Discussion on question of where does authority for guidelines come from? Chapter 3.96 provides an outline of definitions, roles and responsibilities for each partner in the neighborhood system with few details. The ONI guidelines were identified in code to be the vehicle to flush out those details.
David Lane - Stated that the committee can propose changes to city code. Suggested that one possibility is to put more details directly into city code and eliminate the guidelines.
Joleen Classen - Reminded committee that the Guidelines were created in the first place to make the city code more user friendly. There was a concern that calling them code or rules would turn people off.
Patricia Gardener - Presented her goals to identify a separation of voluntary principles from required city code.
Discussion on what parts of ONI could be considered voluntary? Stanley and Raymond had already reviewed the document and concluded they are minimal requirements as is and can not be eliminated.
Discussions on what were historical purposes/mandates for civic involvement? State Land Use Senate Bill 100 and Federal housing rules to require public participation in the 70's were two sources.
Discussion on suggestion that the title of the document should be changed to more accurately reflects what it is: Code, administrative rules, standards, etc. These are quantifiable/measurable rules. It was pointed out that "standards" as a title would conflict with use of word for established planning purposes.
Action: General support that chapter 3.96 needs to be cleaned up and added to committee's charge.
Action: Suggestion to tag what sections of the guidelines relate to different components of city code. Brian will create a table.
Discussion on question if neighborhood associations are participatory or representative? What legal status do associations actually have? Multiple opinions with several saying both. It is clear that this is a major philosophical question that goes to the heart of power relationships between neighborhood associations, coalitions, ONI and the city council and bureaus.
Discussion on question if we can combine code and philosophy/background history on language into one document? Yes, as long as both were clearly differentiated. City zoning documents have done this.
Action idea: Proposal suggested writing a history of how these documents came to be over the past 30 years. Perhaps a sub-committee of Moshe, Jerry, others could do it.
Leonard proposed order of business for committee:
· Start with review of city code - chapter 3.96
· Systematically review current ONI guidelines
· Identify additional ideas

IV. Next steps
Patricia, Moshe and Brian will meet to set next agenda.

The information contained in this document is preliminary and informal in nature and does not necessarily reflect the views or adopted policies of the City of Portland or the final outcomes of this project; the reader should exercise caution in its interpretation.