Portland Public Forums are an ongoing program of Oregon Opportunity Network, made possible through a grant from the Portland Housing Bureau.
Members, supporters, and decision-makers come together to discuss current issues affecting the affordable housing community. All forums are free and open to the public. Contact us to receive announcements about upcoming Forums.
These forums are generally held at First Unitarian Church, Buchan Room – 1226 SW Salmon St., Portland 97205 - from 12 noon to 1:30 (doors open at 11:30). Cookies and coffee/water provided; feel free to bring your own lunch. All are welcome!
READ ABOUT OUR PAST FORUMS:
January 19, 2017: Where do we go from here? A panel discussion with housing leaders on the future of housing equity and opportunity in Portland
We heard perspectives from several of our new generation of housing leaders, as they discuss the path forward for equitable housing opportunity in our city. We were excited to hear from this panel of leaders:
September 1, 2016 - Portland's Inclusionary Housing Policy - with Commissioner Dan Saltzman
During the 2016 legislative session, many housing advocates and partners, including the City of Portland, worked hard to lift the statewide ban on Inclusionary Zoning (IZ). The resulting bill (SB 1533), while far from ideal, did make it possible for a local jurisdiction to enact a limited form of mandatory inclusionary zoning in private market development. Commissioner Saltzman has led the way on developing Portland’s proposal, and an advisory group has provided input.
You can read here for more information on the City’s process. By early September, the Commissioner’s proposal was close to complete. This forum was an opportunity for Oregon ON members, partners, and the public to learn more and provide feedback as this historic policy moves toward consideration by City Council.
July 28, 2016 - Residential Infill Forum: Equitable Housing Choices for Portland Neighborhoods
Seven Oregon ON members, partners and community members gathered at a forum on July 28 on the City’s Residential Infill process. Joe Zehnder, Morgan Tracy, and Tyler Bump from the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability presented the proposal that is currently under consideration. This forum was part of the City’s public outreach that is wrapping up on August 15th. For more information and to provide feedback, check out the project website: http://www.portlandoregon.gov/bps/67728
During audience discussion, we talked about the tensions around keeping “neighborhood character,” the resistance to change from some residents, and the interest in providing housing opportunities for communities of color, families with low and moderate income, millennials, and aging folks looking to downsize. More pics and info on Facebook
April 8, 2016: Mayoral Candidates forum - co-sponsored with Community Alliance of Tenants, Street Roots and Portland tenants United
Seven mayoral candidates participated in this forum focused on housing, tenant protections, and homelessness - expertly moderated by Katrina Holland of the Community Alliance of Tenants. Watch video from the first hour here.
Our questions included: closing this gap and better aligning publicly funded housing with the biggest need at 0-30% MFI; addressing disparities to ensure that communities of color have equitable access to quality housing; and a lightning round of yes/no questions on topics including Inclusionary Zoning and rent control. Thanks to all our partners, the candidates and those who attended.
January 22, 2016: A conversation with Portland’s Housing Commissioner, Dan Saltzman and Portland Housing Bureau Director Kurt Creager
About 100 people from the Portland housing industry and the broader community filled the room for an update and conversation with Portland’s Housing Commissioner Dan Saltzman and Portland Housing Bureau Director Kurt Creager.
It was truly exciting to hear the depth of detail and broad vision provided by our city’s housing leadership – in short, profound wonkiness driven by the value that everyone needs a place to call home – and a determination to push hard and do what it takes to get there.
Both men noted that it is “time to call the question” for housing in Portland – time to make budget investments, time to step up as a community to ensure that everyone in our community has access to housing opportunity.
June 16, 2015: Emerging Leadership in Affordable Housing and Community Development in Portland: A Panel Discussion with the New Generation of Housing Leaders
We were inspired to hear from several new leaders who will share their perspectives about the challenges and opportunities in Portland around housing and community development, followed by audience discussion:
Friday, May 8, 2015: The City of Portland’s First Annual State of Housing Report:
A Presentation of Key Findings and Discussion with City Leadership. We were pleased to welcome Housing Commissioner Dan Saltzman, Portland Housing Bureau Assistant Director Javier Mena and PHB Policy and Equity Manager Matthew Tschabold for a discussion of PHB’s first annual State of Housing Report. Check out pictures from the event on Facebook.
The report paints a stark picture of the lack of affordable housing access and options, particularly for communities of color and our lowest-income neighbors.
What can we do about it? Advocate for more money for housing in the upcoming City budget. Write to your state Representative and Senator urging them to support the Governor’s proposal to invest $100 million in affordable housing; and to support HB 2564, which would lift the statewide ban on affordable housing.
Let’s use this excellent but sobering report to continue to push for better policies and increased resources so that people of all colors and income levels can call Portland home.
Feb. 5, 2015: Enough Planning, Time for Action:
An update from the East Portland Action Plan Housing Committee. Oregon ON was delighted to host members of the East Portland Action Plan Housing Committee at this forum to learn the latest about their recommendations for equitable access to housing opportunity in East Portland. Who are we building for and who are we welcoming in our city? How can we ensure that everyone has the opportunity to choose where they want to live? How do we encourage growth and economic development in East Portland, without displacing low-income residents?
The panel discussion included the following East Portland Action Plan representatives:
More pix and recap on Facebook – click here.
Dec. 5, 2014: Is the American Dream Out of Reach?