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City: No general homeless camping testimony at R2DToo hearing


PORTLAND TRIBUNE FILE PHOTO - More homeless people are predicted to be camping in Portland as the city and its partners work to build more affordable housing.The public will not be allowed to testify on Mayor Charlie Hales' new homeless camping policies when the City Council considers relocating the Right 2 Dream Too homeless camp on Thursday, Feb. 18.

Instead, the public will only be allowed to testify on the three agenda items directly related to the proposed move of the camp from Northwest 4th Avenue and Burnside Street to a city-owned parcel at Southeast 3rd Avenue and Harrison Street — a "street vacation" ordinance to increase the size of the parcel and two resolutions authorizing the relocation.

"The Council meeting regarding Right 2 Dream Too is expected to attract a large number of concerned stakeholders who want to testify on the specific issue. The Right 2 Dream Too relocation has gone through more than three years of public process, and people will want to have their say on the final proposed actions. As such, the mayor will limit testimony to the topic of the meeting," says Sara Hottman, Hales' communications director.

The Portland Tribune published an editorial Thursday calling for the public to be allowed to comment on Hales' new policies to allow more homeless camping at the Feb. 18 hearing. There has been no public council hearing on the new policies, which are supported by homeless advocates and opposed by some neighborhood associations.

Hottman says that people who want to comment on the new homeless camping policies may sign up for to speak under the "communications" item at the beginning of Wednesday council agendas. Such requests must be made in advance to the Council Clerk, however, and all five slots are already taken for next Wednesday's meeting.

Hottman also says the public can contact the mayor and commissioners via e-mail, phone calls, and social media.

A previous story about Hales' new homeless camping policies can be read at portlandtribune.com/pt/9-news/292500-169753-hales-portlanders-should-tolerate-more-homeless-camping.