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The City of Portland, Oregon

Nick Fish (In Memoriam)

City of Portland Commissioner

phone: 503-823-3589


1221 S.W. 4th, Room 240, Portland, OR 97204

The Weekly Catch

Old 25-Acre Landfill Officially Becomes New Cully Park

Hailey Stewart in the Portland Tribune


Outside In's Longtime Director Wraps Up Job

Zane Sparling in the Portland Tribune


Crews to Improve Habitat at Oaks Bottom

Steve Law in the Portland Tribune


Celebrating Another Year of Tree Planting!

BES City Green Blog


Take a Guided Tour of the Washington Park Reservoir Improvement Project

PWB Water Blog


Inventory: State has 62,000-Plus Affordable Units

Paris Achen in the Portland Tribune


ADUs Often More Affordable, Except When Short-Term Rentals

Steve Law in the Portland Tribune

In Other News

The Application Process For Portland’s E-Scooter Pilot Program Is Now Open, And Fleets Could Hit Portland By the End of the Month

Elise Herron in Willamette Week


Portland Filmmaker’s Video of Migrant Kids in Court Goes Viral

Sara Roth in KGW News


ICE Agents Return to Work in Portland As Occupy Camp Continues Outside

Katie Shepherd in Willamette Week


Plan Ahead: I-84 Construction Will Affect Everyone's Commute

KOIN 6 Staff


Blues Fest Cooks up Rose City Summer Fun

Ainslie Cromar in the Portland Tribune


Waterfront Blues Festival Kickoff Makes for Memorable Independence Day

Anna Spoerre in The Oregonian

Nick's Mid-Year Report

July 10, 2018

Nick at the Metropolitan Youth Symphony Awards

Dear Friend,

I write to update you on the first six months of 2018.

It has been a busy year: my re-election campaign, a new budget, progress on affordable housing, transitions for the arts, and continued threats to vulnerable communities by the federal government.

In addition to my day job as a City Commissioner, I am continuing my cancer treatment. I am grateful for my outstanding medical team – doctors and nurses at OHSU, and naturopaths in my neighborhood. But my loving and supportive family and friends are the best medicine!

In May, after nine months on the campaign trail, I was re-elected to serve another four-year term. Public service is my passion, and I’m deeply grateful for this vote of confidence. It is an honor to serve on City Council and to represent all Portlanders.

A New Budget

Our 2018-19 budget invests in homelessness and affordable homes, safe streets, basic infrastructure, community policing, older adults, and small businesses.

Council increased the business license tax from 2.2% to 2.6%, to fund improved community policing and expanded homeless services. And we kept a promise to small business owners, raising the business owners’ compensation deduction to $125,000 of net income.

We also continued to support small businesses in East Portland, permanently funding the highly-successful Catalytic Investment Initiative run by Venture Portland.

The budget includes funding for new police officers, advancing our shared commitment to community policing – freeing up time for officers to stop “chasing the radio” and get out of their cars and into the community.

Utility Financial Assistance

During Portland’s housing crisis, some of our neighbors need extra help paying their utility bill. We’ve offered struggling families and older adults utility discounts since 1995, but with one catch – you needed a water meter to qualify. Because many apartment buildings have a shared meter, renters were left out.

After much research and planning, led by my former Water Bureau liaison Liam Frost, we developed a handful of new tools to help cost-burdened renters stay in their homes.

Housing for All

Affordable housing is the reason I first ran for City Council, and it continues to be my highest priority. Council has taken important steps to address the housing crisis this year.

We dedicated $2 million to fund supportive housing services, which will help us meet our goal of 2,000 new units by 2027.

We adopted permanent renter relocation assistance, building on the protections championed by Commissioner Eudaly last year.

We waived development fees for constructing tiny homes and accessory dwelling units (ADUs), boosting our supply of affordable housing.

And we required short-term rental companies and visitors to Portland to pay their fair share by increasing the per-night booking fee to $4 and dedicating the revenue to affordable housing.

Arts and Culture

I’m honored to serve as the City’s Arts Commissioner and as Council liaison to the Regional Arts and Culture Council (RACC).

Portland’s celebrated creative economy is at a crossroads. Rapid growth and the housing crisis threaten to displace artists and arts organizations.

In February, Council adopted a bold set of recommendations to protect and expand affordable arts spaces. Our goal is simple: to support the arts because they’re important to our local economy and our brand, they inspire us, and they make our community special.

In January, I appointed a new Creative Laureate, Subashini “Suba” Ganesan. Established in 2012, the Creative Laureate serves as the official ambassador to Portland’s creative community.

Last year, Mayor Wheeler and I asked Auditor Mary Hull Caballero to conduct the first-ever review of our partnership with RACC. The timing was good – RACC is conducting a national search for a new Executive Director, and the City and RACC are renegotiating their contract. The Auditor made common-sense recommendations – which we’re already implementing – to strengthen oversight and increase accountability of our public investments.

Protecting Water, Salmon, and the Environment

My bureaus, Environmental Services and Water, are committed to making Portland a healthier, more sustainable city.

Work at Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge will restore habitat for salmon. By removing a small culvert, salmon will return to Oaks Bottom for the first time in nearly 100 years!

We reached a major milestone in our ongoing “Poop to Power” effort – opening the City’s first natural gas fueling station. It will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, replace dirty diesel fuel with clean natural gas, and ultimately deliver a profit for ratepayers.

Council approved a new position at Prosper Portland to help turn brownfields into community assets.

And Mayor Wheeler and I continue to work with the community, as well as public and private parties, to clean up the Willamette River.

A More Welcoming City

When we remove barriers and support a more inclusive community, everyone wins.

This year, I launched a pilot program in my bureaus to provide opportunities and job experience for people with disabilities. We’re expanding the successful partnership with Project SEARCH in the coming year.

Last month, Council proudly renamed SW Stark Street in honor of gay rights leader Harvey Milk.

And we preserved funding for Elders in Action in the budget, so we can continue our partnership on the Age-Friendly Action Plan.

Safe Streets

One death on our streets is too many. I am a strong supporter of Vision Zero and will continue prioritizing investments in safe streets, especially in East Portland. As part of that commitment, I supported lowering speed limits on residential streets to 20 MPH.

Transportation network companies (TNCs), like Uber and Lyft, have made it easier for people to get around town. That said, Uber in particular has a history of refusing to play by our rules. In April, they issued the City a formal apology and asked for a fresh start.

As Council renegotiates Uber’s operating agreement, I will continue to advocate for consumers and drivers, focusing on making sure TNC drivers are adequately insured. And recently, I proudly stood with TNC drivers and labor leaders to call for the creation of a TNC Wage Board, an oversight group to give drivers a voice in the workplace. Council approved a wage board in May.

Planning for Portland’s Future

Council finished two major planning processes: the Comprehensive Plan and the Central City 2035 Plan. Both plans are the result of years-long processes with extensive public input, staff work, and Council deliberations.

Proud Moments

   - Watching my son Chapin graduate from middle school. He’ll be attending Lincoln High School in the fall.

   - Joining Portland Public Schools students at Roosevelt High School in a walkout supporting responsible gun control.

   - Witnessing the swearing-in of Judge Adrienne Nelson to the Oregon State Supreme Court – the first African-American to serve on our state’s highest bench.

   - Celebrating the 20th anniversary of White Bird, and the 25th anniversary of the Muslim Educational Trust.

   - Participating on panels with Multnomah County Library to discuss what it means to be a “Sanctuary City” and KGW-TV to discuss trust in government.

   - Receiving Community Partner Awards from Friends of Trees and Metropolitan Youth Symphony.

In Memoriam

Former Mayor Vera Katz was a visionary leader who helped shape modern Portland. I admired the way she dealt with her illness, as a public official and as a private citizen.

Reverend Dr. W. G. “Will” Hardy was a model “servant leader,” dedicating a lifetime of service to our community. Pastor Hardy will always be remembered for his advocacy for vulnerable people.

Staff Changes

We said goodbye to Amira Streeter, who is joining the Governor’s team as a Natural Resources Policy Advisor. Asena Lawrence will take over Amira’s role as Policy Director. And Mariana Garcia Medina will serve as our new Scheduler and Office Manager.

Thank You

Everything we do at City Hall requires collaboration. Thank you for what you do to make Portland a special place. I am honored to serve on your City Council.


Nick Fish

Nick Touring the Under-Construction OHSU Knight Cancer Research Building Nick Meeting with the Native American Portland Youth And Elders Council
Nick at Sister Cities Reception Rally Supporting Responsible Gun Control
Nick at Friends of Trees Awards Nick with Creative Laureate Suba Ganesan

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The Weekly Catch

Nick's Mid-Year Report

Nick Fish Blog


Poet's Beach Opens in Time for Portland Heat Wave



Poet’s Beach Reopens This Week

Portland Patch


Here are the Winners of the Best of Portland Readers’ Poll 2018

Willamette Week

Environmental Services

Willamette River Cleanliness: Scientist Separates Fact from Fiction



Part of Springwater Corridor to Close Until October for Salmon Refuge Project

Zahidun Nisa in KGW News


Springwater Corridor Closure Begins Monday

Travis Loose in the Portland Patch


Section of Springwater Corridor Closed for Oaks Bottom Restoration Project

FOX 12 News


It's Getting Hot! Don't Forget to Water Your Trees

BES City Green Blog


New Housing Bond Development Planned for Cully Neighborhood

The Portland Housing Bureau Blog


Portland Will Spend Half a Million Dollars on an Affordable Housing Property in Cully

Rachel Monahan in Willamette Week


City Selects Cully Neighborhood for New Affordable Housing Complex

Alex Zielinski in the Portland Mercury


Portland To Build 50 Units in Cully Neighborhood with Housing Bond Funds

Gordon Friedman in The Oregonian


City Seeks to Thwart Redevelopment of Mobile and Manufactured Home Parks

Steve Law in the Portland Tribune

In Other News

Hall Monitor: Hail to the Chief

Alex Zielinski in the Portland Mercury


Mayor Wheeler Supports Investigation into Police Interactions with Homeless

Maggie Vespa in KGW News


City Council Has Renewed Its Push to Toll All of I-5 and I-205 in the Portland Area

Rachel Monahan in Willamette Week


Portland Baseball Stadium Location Could Be Revealed in A Month, Barrett Says

Jared Cowley in KGW News

Health Update

July 19, 2018


About a year ago, I was diagnosed with stomach cancer.

I am so grateful for all the love and support my family and I have received. Thank you. Today, I am even more confident that I will win this fight.

My doctors are modifying my treatment for a few months to maximize our progress – and it will have an impact on my public and private life.

Here is a snapshot:

1. I will receive infusions every two weeks. That means two Fridays a month at OHSU's Knight Cancer Institute.

2. I will have less energy.

3. I may lose some more hair – but as my son reminds me, most people won’t notice any difference!

4. The tumor will continue to take a pounding.

The new treatment will have one other important side effect – I will need more recovery time.

That means that while I will continue to keep a very busy schedule during the workday, I will be doing fewer evening events for now. I hope everyone understands.

Thank you for your continued support. My goal is to continue to meet and exceed all the responsibilities of my day job, while laying the groundwork for my full recovery.

The Weekly Catch

Health Update

Nick Fish Blog


Fish: New Cancer Treatments to Affect Public, Private Life

Jim Redden in the Portland Tribune


The Localist Revolution

David Brooks in New York Times Opinion


Portland Will Take Uber off Probation

Steve Law in the Portland Tribune

Environmental Services

Audit Finds Cracks in Portland's Rainwater Discount Program

Corlyn Voorhees in The Oregonian


Fremont Pump Station in Madison South Slated for Upgrades

Phill Colombo in The Hollywood Star News

City Council

Portland Grants More Paid Vacation to City Employees

Corlyn Voorhees in The Oregonian


City Rezone Seeks to Protect 3,000 Families In Mobile Home Parks

Steve Law in the Portland Tribune

Sunday Parkways

City to Kick Off Sunday Parkways on The Green Loop

KOIN 6 News


Sunday Parkways Gives Residents a Preview of Portland's "Green Loop" Location



Portland Diamond Project Hopes to Control Property Soon

KOIN 6 News


Major League Baseball's Commissioner Again Floats Portland As a Top Candidate for A Team

Eric Snyder in the Portland Business Journal

In Other News

Mayor Believes City's Future Bright

Jim Redden in the Portland Tribune


Biketown Celebrates 2-Year Anniversary

The Portland Patch


Crews from Central City Concern's Clean Start Program Help Clean Homeless Campsites, Regularly Picking Up Garbage

Simon Gutierrez in FOX 12 Oregon


Portland Police Bureau Seeks Input from Community On 5-Year Plan



Our Opinion: City Has Role in Cutting Housing Costs

Portland Tribune Editorial Board


Unlikely Allies Are Joining Forces to Agitate for an Unprecedented Highway Tolling Plan Across Portland

Rachel Monahan in Willamette Week


Portland Fire & Rescue Firefighters Trained to Stop Wildfires

Orion Ludlow in KATU News