Rothko Pavilion Nears City Approval

A planned $50 million Rothko Pavilion at the Portland Art Museum looks like a done deal, despite criticism of closing a bicycle and walking path. WW reported the museum had raised $27 million for the expansion without securing the permission of the City Council to take over the city-owned right of way. But on Dec. 7, the council is expected to approve the pavilion, after the museum promised people would be able to walk through the building where the walkway currently sits. "What sealed it for me was, they have a chance to be one of the most accessible art museums on the West Coast," says City Commissioner Nick Fish.

Attempt to Block New State Lawmaker Fails

Oregon's newest state legislator, Rep. Jeff Helfrich (R-Hood River), will be sworn into office this week, despite the best efforts of unknown forces inside Multnomah County to block him from taking a seat that Democrats hope to win in next year's election. Helfrich was one of three candidates to replace Rep. Mark Johnson (R-Hood River), who resigned for another job. But somebody at Multnomah County—the county attorney's office will not say who—asked for a last-minute legal opinion on whether Helfrich could serve as both a sheriff's deputy and a lawmaker. "I believe a deputy sheriff is likely…barred from serving as a state legislator," wrote senior assistant county attorney Carlos J. Calandriello. That opinion is not binding and flies in the face of recent precedents—including former state Rep. Randy Leonard (D-Portland), who served as a lawmaker while a city firefighter.

Businesses Ask City to Give Up Trademark Battles

Business owners in Old Town are urging Mayor Ted Wheeler to abandon a city effort to trademark the "Portland Oregon" sign. The city's federal trademark applications have been denied in the past for use on beer and alcohol because a local brewery, Old Town Brewing, already owns a confusingly similar trademark for the leaping stag image."Tell your city staffers to stop filing trademark application after trademark application for an image that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has repeatedly determined is confusing," Dan Lenzen, president of the Old Town Hospitality Group, wrote to the mayor last week. "It is wrong and an abuse of power to attempt to bury Old Town Brewing in legal fees." Wheeler's office says the city is working toward a solution to the trademark dispute that is "mutually agreeable" to both the city and the brewery.

Give!Guide Tops $1 Million in Donations

WW's annual Give!Guide is live and accepting donations at giveguide.org. Giving has topped $1.2 million. If attendees make a donation at this week's happy hour (Siren and the Sea, 6:30 pm at White Owl Social Club), they'll have a chance to win a Poler tent, $75 to Mississippi Studios or a case of Brew Dr. Kombucha.