Skip to Main Content View Text-Only

The City of Portland, Oregon

Office of Equity and Human Rights

Realizing Equity. Enhancing the City of Portland.

Phone: 503-823-4433

Fax: 503-823-4420

421 SW 6th Avenue, Suite 500, Portland, OR 97204

More Contact Info

October 12, 2012

Portland Commission on Disability

Friday, October 12, 2012
10 am to 11:30 am

1900 Building, Second Floor, Room 2500A
1900 SW Fourth Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97204

Commissioners Present:

      Amy Anderson                                 Steven Brown                                Jan Campbell

      Christina Cooper                              Alan DeLa Torre                            Jewls Harris

      LaVaun Heaster                               Jim Jackson                                   Nicholas Johnson

      Adam Kriss                                       Nyla McCarthy                              Phyllis Petteys

      Martha Simpson                              Suzanne Stahl                                Michael Szporluk

      Joe VanderVeer                               Travis Wall

City of Portland Staff: Patrick Philpott, Commission Staff

Public Attendees: Debra Hubbard


Chair Nyla McCarthy called the meeting to order and roll call was conducted. It was noted that a quorum existed.



Motion: Joe made a motion to amend the agenda to include discussion on inclusionary zoning ordinance. Jan moved to add discussion about a table at the Connecting Communities Coalition event.  The Chair asked for any further changes or objections before approving the amended agenda. There were none and the agenda was approved unanimously.

Motion: Jewls made a motion to approve the August 2012 meeting minutes. Joe seconded the motion. The minutes were approved unanimously.


1        Nyla reported that the executive committee met and discussed a formal mentoring program. Anyone wishing to participate may request mentoring from an exec member. Mentoring should consist of one meeting in person per month with email contacts, too. The goal is to develop skills for serving on the executive committee and leading a committee.

2         The executive committee has also been working on an application for a Commission representative to the Office of Equity & Human Rights (OEHR) Bureau Advisory Committee (BAC). The chair stressed this position requires a real time commitment. Jan also offered further information about the position. Applications have a deadline of November 26 for review by the exec group. It was mentioned that Commissioners may also apply for an at-large position on the BAC.


1        Following amendments determined by the Commission in previous PCOD meetings, the executive had prepared an amended bylaws document which included updated language. During questions and discussion, some other amendments were proposed. In regards to discussion over liaisons, it was suggested that Dante attend the next Commission meeting to discuss the role of liaisons.

Motion: Jewls made a motion to approve the amended bylaws. Jan seconded the motion. The amended bylaws were approved with one abstention.


1        Providence Therapy Pool Closure: Jewls had written a letter of concern, approved by the Commission in August, which was sent to Providence Healthcare concerning its impending closure of a therapy pool. Providence responded with a letter announcing closure was progressing as planned. Discussion continued to explore other local options to provide as an information resource to the public. Nyla reminded the Commission that its leverage is very limited with private entities. Steve questioned if Portland Parks and Recreation can provide a therapy pool? Jewls will investigate.

2        Livability & Wellness Committee tour of Oregon Zoo: The committee performed an accessibility tour at the zoo for its last meeting. The zoo staff was very receptive to input offered on specific noted items. The zoo brochure did not include information on accommodation. Metro is sharing its diversity action plan with the subcommittee and is discussing involvement of people with disabilities.

3        Harper’s Playground:  Joe announced that the playground has its grand opening on October 27 and invited the commissioners to attend and show support for this successful project. The Accessibility in the Built Environment (ABE) Committee had submitted a letter of support for this project.

4        PCOD Table at Connecting Communities Coalition (CCC) Event: Jan announced that CCC is conducting its annual event “Celebrating Abilities.” A table would be available for the Commission to use for information and outreach. Nyla asked that Commissioners attend for recruitment and to provide information. Lavaun volunteered to assist and added that she and Patrick are working on a handout and setting up the table. It was noted that the event is very good and a great opportunity to help others learn about PCOD.

5        Review and Vote on Inclusionary Zoning Ordinance: Alan reported that a guest at the recent ABE meeting asked for support of an ordinance for inclusionary zoning. It would provide for local entities to have language regarding low income concerns and people with disabilities to be included in new housing development. Legislation is proposed to repeal the statewide ban and allow inclusionary zoning if desired by state or local governments. PCOD would sign on in endorsement with a larger statewide group. There was further discussion with questions from the Commissioners.

Motion: Alan made a motion to endorse repeal of the ban on inclusionary zoning in the state of Oregon. Suzanne seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously approved.

6        Out of the Mud Street Improvement Project: The Mayor’s proposal to address the unpaved streets in the city was discussed by Joe. He explained the proposal which the executive committee requested him to compose a letter to City Council with neither an endorsement or opposition from PCOD. There were questions from the group with more discussion.

Motion: Jan made a motion to approve sending a Commission’s letter of concern to City Council in regards to the Out of the Mud proposal. Joe seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously approved with one abstention.


1        Nyla read a list of Commissioners whose terms are due to expire at the end of November. She requested that Commissioners send a letter stating their intention to be reappointed to Patrick before December 1. There was discussion and it was noted that some Commissioners would not be reappointed because of a lack of attendance. Commissioners were advised to review the bylaws for fulfilling their duties.

2        Alan noted that Metro is seeking applicants to serve on its transportation policy committee. It directly reports to Metro and is reaching out to PCOD for participation. The terms are for either one or two years with a deadline of October 19.

3        Access Recreation was also mentioned for its development of guidelines for access in outdoor recreation. There is a celebration planned on November 2 in the Portland Building.

4        Adam that there will be a public event on October 26 with Colored Pencils at the Portland Art Museum. There will be food and exhibits of art, including some by people with disabilities. There is also the Night of Networking on October 16 at OHSU’s South Waterfront, also noting the Connecting Communities’ Celebrate Abilities event on October 23 at the DoubleTree Lloyd Center Hotel.

5        Nyla noted that the meeting be would adjourned at 11:30 am and Commissioners were asked to return to the room at 12:30 pm for the City Commissioners’ Candidate Forum. An information table was also noted that is providing other disability organization information during the meeting and forum.


Motion: Joe moved, seconded by Jewls, to adjourn the Commission meeting. The motion was approved unanimously.