What’s brewing with BottleDrop?

The BottleDrop situation has been fairly quiet the last few weeks. Too quiet in my opinion. While I believe that we have convinced Oregon Beverage and Recycling Cooperative (OBRC) that moving forward with the Dollar Tree location is not feasible at this time, I won’t rest easy until OBRC formally confirms that they are abandoning the project. Here’s a quick update.

Meeting with OBRC

I received confirmation that Rep. Travis Nelson is setting up a meeting with OBRC executives, myself, and a couple of other community members. The purpose of the meeting is to make it clear that Rep. Nelson will take up our cause in the legislature if OBRC doesn’t walk away from the St. Johns site. I’ll provide another update by email after the meeting. If you wish to be added to the email list, contact me at mikevial@gmail.com.

Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative truck soon to be at Dollar Tree site?
Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative truck
soon to be at the former Dollar Tree site?

Elections and Electeds:

This isn’t intended to be a formal endorsement. That said, I do want to identify the candidates that have already committed to helping us stop the BottleDrop if they are elected. 

State House (Dist. 44): Travis Nelson represents House Dist. 44 (that covers almost all of North Portland and a sliver of NE Portland). He attended the SJNA meeting and has made a firm commitment to supporting us however he can.

Multnomah County Commission (Dist.2) candidate: Sam Adams has provided assistance early and often by putting me in touch with officials and staff, giving helpful advice, and working on locating alternative locations for the BottleDrop.

Multnomah County Commission (Dist.2) candidate: Shannon Singleton is also opposed to the Bottle Drop and agrees with the safety concerns outlined in the SJNA letter. 

Multnomah County DA-elect: Nathan Vasquez called me out of the blue to ask what he could do to help. I asked him to commit to writing a letter opposing the BottleDrop to OLCC and any other agency having jurisdiction. He agreed to do so. 

Portland Mayoral candidates: Carmen Rubio and Rene Gonzalez have both taken public positions (through staff) in opposition to the BottleDrop and committed to continuing their assistance going forward. 

Oregon Treasurer-elect: Sen. Elizabeth Steiner responded by stating that she would “elevate the concerns of my constituents in the St. Johns area,” but she declined to commit to opposing the BottleDrop.

US House, 3rd District-elect: Rep. Maxine Dexter responded by stating that the “proposed site on Lombard is clearly not a good fit for the needs of the community and I am supportive of efforts to identify an alternative that is more appropriate.” She also stated that she has been encouraging OBRC and the City to find a different site and mentioned that she has encouraged her legislative colleagues to revisit the workings of the Bottle Bill more generally.

Sen. Lew Frederick has been very engaged in neighborhood affairs, but has been strangely silent on this issue. Please send an email to him at Sen.LewFrederick@oregonlegislature.gov to express your concerns as soon as possible and cc mikevial@gmail.com.

by Mike Vial

See the Portland City Council candidates’ positions on the BottleDrop relocation to St. Johns on page 3 of the North Peninsula Review.