Business owners say Portland's politicians are ruining Chinatown

James Huffman is a law professor at Lewis & Clark and ran as a Republican for U.S. Senate against Ron Wyden. He was also an investor in a now-closed restaurant on the edge of Portland's Chinatown. 

He reports in the Oregonian, that Portland's selective enforcement of its own laws is driving out law-abiding and tax-paying businesses while encouraging an illegal camp.

The problem for [Greek restaurant] Alexis and other businesses in Chinatown, including now closed Ping (in which I was an investor), is that longtime customers stopped coming. They stopped coming because Chinatown is a mess, and at the heart of that mess is RightToDreamToo (R2D2), an illegal homeless camp the "city that works" has tolerated for nearly four years.

Actually our fearless leaders have not just tolerated the camp. They have encouraged it, praised it and helped arrange for nearly a million dollars to support it. There was a plan to move it in 2013, but the more influential folks in the Pearl District objected. So it remains an open sore in Chinatown while jobs that would help get the R2D2 campers off the streets are lost to dying businesses.

Read the whole thing over at the Oregonian.



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