By Laura Smith

The biggest news is the cancellation of the joint Mt. Tabor/North Tabor neighborhoods’ annual cleanup scheduled for April 30. DEQ and Metro have a list of materials that might contain asbestos and Metro would impose significant fines ($2,000 to $5,000) if those materials get into drop boxes at a neighborhood cleanup.

Cleanup volunteers don’t have the inspection and enforcement training needed to ensure those materials don’t get into the drop boxes.  The neighborhood associations felt they couldn’t take the chance that they could be fined. MTNA and NTNA will discuss the possibility of holding a modified cleanup next year.

Recently, there was a hearing at the Bureau of Development Services (BDS) for review of the housing development on SE Yamhill by Mark Desbrow and Ethan Beck.

A neighbor said the plans for the sidewalk have been changed to just widening the street with asphalt and a painted reflective stripe/fog line at the edge. Neighbors in the area prefer and were told a raised curb and sidewalk would be installed. An MTNA board member will call BDS to get an update.

Jessica Vega Pederson, Multnomah County Commissioner candidate for District 3, introduced herself and outlined what she wants to accomplish as a commissioner. As the first Latina elected to the State House, representing East Portland, she is focused on services, infrastructure, safety issues, and women’s and working families’ issues. In her new role as a county commissioner, she hopes to address homelessness and sustainability.

Meetings between MTNA and the Portland Water Bureau (PWB) regarding maintenance of the reservoirs continue. PWB has sent out RFPs (requests for proposals) for resources consultants for the restoration of the historic reservoir structures. Discussions are ongoing between MTNA and PWB about managing the still water in the reservoirs and what the refreshing process will be. There has been a delay in the opening of the off-leash dog park due to pipe repairs. The off-leash area is estimated to re-open in early May.

MTNA gave spoken testimony April 20 at City Council about comprehensive plan and zoning changes affecting the neighborhood. Their testimony opposed an amendment to change Portland Nursery’s zoning to all commercial and provided opposition to proposed zoning changes to the empty lot on the NE corner SE 60th and Belmont to allow four stories (current zoning allows up to three stories). MTNA testified their support for the current mixed use dispersed zoning between SE 50th and 51st along SE Hawthorne as part of the original vision for that area.

Weed Warrior trainings and sessions in Mt. Tabor Park are April 30 and May 28. If you’d like to be a Weed Warrior, free training is provided and so is lunch on the day of the two-hour monthly session. Contact Stasia Honnold at fmtpweedwarriors@gmail.com.

MTNA board member elections are at the next meeting. If you live, work or own property in the Mt. Tabor neighborhood, you are a member of the neighborhood association. Take your involvement in the neighborhood a step further and volunteer as a board member.  For information, see our website or flyers posted in the neighborhood.

The next MTNA meeting is Wednesday, May 18, 7 pm at Mt. Tabor Presbyterian Church at SE 54th and Belmont (downstairs in the dining hall). Social time starts at 6:50 pm. mttaborpdx.org.