Contact Commissioner Hardesty

If you are having trouble getting started, copy and paste the following into email client, or create a letter to mail (or fax!?) or use as script for phone call.  The sections in RED are to be removed and replaced with your own words, but any of it can be edited, omitted or added to from other things you found compelling in the background information    ==========================================

Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty
Portland City Hall  1221 SW 4th Ave Ste 230, Portland, OR 97204
PHONE: 503-823-4151                  FAX: 503-823-3036
EMAIL: [email protected]

Dear Commissioner Hardesty

[Briefly Introduce yourself] - the more that we all start acknowledging ourselves as part of the very large music ecosystem, the more influence we will have.

“As a [local performing musician/ local record label/ recording studio employee/avid local music fan, etc], I am [disappointed/saddened/outraged, etc] by the URM Placarding Ordinance.  I am fully supportive of the plan to upgrade structure standards for URMs and creative financing to help owners afford these necessary upgrades.  Placarding as a policy makes our city less safe and threatens much of what makes our city special.

[In your own words, briefly say why you care. Cite closures of music venues, churches, affordable housing, loss of local identity, gathering paces and or Portland character]

I support serious actions to improve seismic safety, but the placarding plan does nothing to make our city more resilient or our people less at risk. The targeted buildings are all fully compliant with current city codes. Labeling them as “Unsafe” prior to a new code mandate is unprecedented and illegal. It will be a year before the city produces new code standards, but the agreement that building owners are being forced to sign by March 1 inflicts devastating financial consequences that make it impossible to complete any upgrades. The agreement also commits them to an upgrade standard FAR above anything the city was planning to require. Their only choice will be to watch their investments decline in function and value and eventually force them to sell to developers for demolition.

The placarding ordinance creates a man-made disaster that will destroy Portland’s communities of faith, culture, and the arts (including the internationally respected local music scene) more immediately and more completely than any earthquake threat. This is not good governing. We can do better.

[This paragraph is only for Hardesty] In your new role as head of PBEM, please repeal this ill-conceived and counterproductive law and return to the business of governing with attainable public safety mandates, fairness and transparency. Let’s make our city more resilient to seismic threats without destroying what makes it special.

As far as I can tell, no one is actively supporting this law, but many are opposing it (NAACP, Portland Tenants United, Restore Oregon, MusicPortland and others). We are watching and look forward to your leadership in City Hall. Please vote to repeal this placarding law completely and get back to productive policies to make our city safer.


[Your Name]
[Business Affiliation or Band name if applicable]
Portland, Oregon