General Meeting
December, 2004

Minutes of the Hillsdale Neighborhood Association Meeting 
December  1, 2004

President Don Baack called the meeting to order at 7:00 pm. Two items were added to the agenda, which then passed. The minutes of the last meeting were approved.

Alex Rate of Green Mountain Energy spoke about renewable electrical power. They have been in partnership with PGE for about 3 years. Portland is unusual in that customers must be given options for the source of their electrical power. Since Portlanders essentially prefer "green", their program has really taken off in the last two years and is the second largest in the US (the largest is Austin, TX). About 10% of the households in Hillsdale participate in green power.

Choices include: Green Source Option: 50% wind, 25% geothermal, 25% hydro

Healthy Habitat Option: Same mix but with $2.50/mo. to Natural Habitat Preservation

Clean Wind: charges a $3.50/mo fixed rate to buy wind power.

School Education Projects: GME will give a $15.00 donation to schools for each new enrollee in the project.

In response to a question about how people may be helped to go solar, Rate explained that utilities are required to offer the lowest possible rates, but PGE does help increase efficiency and offers some subsidies for solar installations, though not enough to completely offset the cost.

Green Mountain may become less expensive than PGE because once the capital costs are paid there is no expense except maintenance. GM currently has a large wind facility on the Washington/Oregon border and more, especially a large one near Condon, are in the works.

Larry McLaughlin asked the HNA to support a project to remove ivy at Hopewell House. He has permission and volunteers, but needs sponsorship. Rob Flecker moved and Duane Hunting seconded that we sponsor the project. Motion passed unanimously.

The wooden bridge on Barbur dates from the 1930's and was repaired about 5 years ago when it was sagging noticeably. At the time it was estimated that the life of the bridge had been extended by about 10 years. It is now estimated to be at 78% sufficiency. Bridges are not replaced until their sufficiency drops to 50%. If the Red Electric pedestrian trail goes down Parkhill as has been suggested, the trail will cross on this bridge. We must be sure to keep an eye on what is being planned by ODOT.

Michael Bissel shared plans of four businesses in the Bertha Block to have a Block Party on New Years Eve. It will be a benefit for the Arts and Community Magnet Academy, with live music. They want to put a heated tent on Nebraska, but will not block access to the apartments there. They have asked for a noon-to-noon permit to provide setup and take down time. Good notification will be provided to the neighbors. Tickets will cost $30.00. The vacant lot on the north side of Capitol Highway is not a suitable place for the tent because it is too rocky and uneven. The motion to support the permit was unanimous.

Don Baack reported a good attendance at the Red Electric open house. The SWTrails would like to see bicycle lockers be a part of the trail's development, and maybe bathrooms.

John Gould reported that about 80 people attended the Pedestrian Summit. Groups tried to identify why there aren't more pedestrians. Two reasons are that there are not enough sidewalks in SW, and people don't regard walking as a form of transportation. Don Bachman said that another problem is the fact that it is hard to walk from one place to another in areas where there are no signal lights to facilitate street crossing. Many areas are not zoned to allow businesses near residences, so people have to drive to get to them.

Some residents along Humphrey Blvd don't want sidewalks there saying that nobody will use them. In the 30's and 40's road design did not include consideration of pedestrians and bicycles, and roads weren't designed to accommodate them, so today we must do remedial work. Sam Adams has suggested giving Neighborhood Associations money to spend as they feel is best to this end.

Don has a letter from PDOT about possibility of putting crossings on Sunset and lowering the speed limit there, and on Dosch Road.

The Robert Gray principal says the trail at 25th to Vermont and the trail on Boundary are not safe. The SWTrails Committee would like to have the problems specified so that corrective measures can be taken. The Markham principal says there are no safe routes.

There will be a charette for the Hillsdale Park Dog Off-Leash area. The City hopes to do 20 plans this year.

Arnie Panitch, formerly of Idaho, says sandwich boards are illegal there and he would like to see fewer of them here. HBPA is working on the problem. Suggestions were made and more are welcome.

MJCC is getting back on its feet. How can the community effectively interface with them? Suggestions?

The Holiday Market, with free vegetarian chili and music by school groups, will be this Sunday.

Meeting adjourned at 8:35.

Keturah Pennington
Substitute secretary

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