- What can you say about a once-promising politician who lost? That he showed, even in a crushing defeat, Portlandâs east-west divide still persists. State Rep. Jefferson Smith (D-East Portland) says he got into the mayorâs race in large part to help bring attention to the needs of the city east of 82nd Avenue. In Charlie Halesâ 61 percent-to-31 percent victory, Smith lost in every precinct in the city, including his eastside home turf. (About 8 percent of voters cast write-in ballots.) The official results released by Multnomah County show Smith topped 42 percent of the vote in only eight of the cityâs 102 precinctsâall in East Portland. (See light-green areas above.) Hales won 70-plus percent of the vote in the monied westside precincts and his neighborhood, Eastmoreland (dark-green areas.)
- Gov. John Kitzhaber next week will name a new director for the embattled Oregon Department of Energy, still recovering from the lengthy 2010 Oregon Department of Justice investigation of agency contracting practices. She is Lisa Schwartz, a former senior staffer at the agency and the Oregon Public Utility Commission. Schwartzâcurrently with the Regulatory Assistance Project, a national nonprofit that works on energy issuesâwill replace interim director Bob Repine.
- Someone is cutting the power cords to food carts, and two eastside pods are being hit hard: Green Castle, at Northeast 20th Avenue and Everett Street, and Rose City, at Northeast 52nd Avenue and Sandy Boulevardâboth lots owned by developer Joe Westerman. Police think itâs vandals targeting specific carts. Flyinâ Hawaiian co-owner Jason Manolian relocated his cart to a pod at Southeast 50th Avenue and Foster Road after his cords were cut and stolen five times between May and October at Green Castle. âItâs $100 to $200 to replace,â Manolian says. âIf it happens every few days, in the food-cart business thatâs big.â Kate Edmonds, Westermanâs assistant, says security cameras are going in, and Westerman now fixes the damage without charge. âWeâve had concerns itâs competition,â she says. âBut we donât want to be conspiracy theorists about it.â