Ask Sarah: Housing for All
About this Episode
January 21, 2020
Sarah welcomes Caleb Swanigan back to Portland, welcomes our new Field Director, Russell Lum, to the team, and answers questions about her Housing for All policy, released earlier this month. Read the full policy at sarah2020.com/housing.
Have a question for Sarah? Email it to [email protected].
Announcer: [00:00] Welcome to Our Portland with Sarah Iannarone, made possible by contributors to Friends of Sarah for Portland. Portlanders have everything we need to make radical progress today on emergencies like climate chaos, housing affordability, and staggering inequality. Each episode we'll hear how Sarah plans to be the mayor to lead the city of Portland to a more equitable and sustainable future. And now, here's Sarah.
Sarah: [00:31] Welcome to the 10th episode of the Our Portland podcast. I'm Sarah Ianarrone and I'm running for Portland Mayor in the May 19th election, less than four months away. My pronouns are she and her. We've dropped a few comprehensive policy packages already this campaign, I hope you'll go to our website, sarah2020.com if you want to read more about our thinking on the Green New Deal and our transition away from fossil fuels and how we can build a prosperous economy and healthy society based on that transition. Our Rethinking Public Safety, which is a careful consideration of how we use our precious tax dollars to keep Portlanders safe every single day. And finally, this episode is devoted to your questions on our latest policy package, which is Housing for All. You can find that at sarah2020.com/housing. But before we get into it, a few updates from the campaign trail.
Sarah: [01:33] I had the wonderful privilege of attending the Martin Luther King Jr. Day breakfast hosted by The Skanner every year. There was a quote there that said, "Everybody can be great because anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace and a soul generated by love," and I get so renewed every year when I attend this event, when I see black Portlanders coming together around issues of importance to their community, supported by their allies across Portland, and also seeing all the student scholarships that The Skanner Foundation gives out to our young people to make sure that they are getting the educations they need to be the best people and develop the greatest character that they can have. It was interesting for me to learn more about people's priorities for our future, how equity and inclusion can be at the top of our economic development agenda. And also just thinking about what it means for us to celebrate things like Martin Luther King Jr. Day here in Portland instead of, say, the more traditional Presidents' Day, right? So that's such a wonderful opportunity for us and I encourage anyone who has not attended that before to be a part of it.
Sarah: [02:48] Also, just a quick update from the Skanner newspaper. One of our beloved community newspapers is moving from weekly publication in print to almost exclusively online. A few bi-monthly special publications coming out, but if you go to their website, you can sign up for their news updates, which I get. And it's a really great way, a good resource for staying on top of things that are happening out of the Skanner newsroom.
Sarah: [03:15] We've had a busy few weeks. Yesterday I had the good fortune of taping comedian Andie Main's podcast, People Enjoying Terrible Accidents, not that PETA. P-E-T-A. It was a colorful retelling of the sinking of the whaling ship Essex in 1820 and the cannibalistic hi-jinks which ensued. I'm not going to go into it much more beyond that. I'll wait for that to drop so you can listen for yourself. Andie's a Portland born comic who relocated to Denver recently and was stopping through town to visit family and we taped her podcast while she was here. So we're very grateful that we had that opportunity. And just the caveat that nothing I say in that podcast can be held against me on the campaign trail because it is comedy.
Sarah: [04:01] All right. Now more seriously, there's a forum tonight for those of you who are listening on the day this comes out, Tuesday, January 21st, hosted by the Multnomah County Democrats, East County Rising, and BerniePDX. I'll be there, my whole crew will be turning out. If you're Sarah supporter, please come on out. We'll have stickers, we'll have buttons, we'll have an opportunity for you to make sure that people are understanding this campaign and why you support it. So if you need more information, you can go to our website, sarah2020.com and find out how to get involved there. If you're not able to join us tonight, you can still visit our website at sarah2020.com/volunteer to sign up to get involved for future events. It's also where you can sign up to host a house party, to host a lawn sign, which will be coming out soon, I've seen the design, it's amazing, you're going to love having one or two or even three of these in your yards depending on your address and how many eyeballs pass by every day. But yeah, exciting times. The campaign is in full swing. Our ground game is up and running and we are so excited for 2020 and reclaiming City Hall for the people out of this campaign.
Sarah: [05:12] That said, you know, I am all about an inclusive city, so I want to make sure that we offer a warm re-homecoming to Caleb Swanigan to the Portland Trailblazers. It's my understanding that Caleb is quite the supporter of Portland's homeless youth. When he would stop through town, I've heard that he would go by and spend the day at New Avenues for Youth, just sharing his experiences and his spirit and his time with those young people. And that's inspiring because not every NBA star has that sort of passion for making sure that our young people who are experiencing homelessness are feeling loved and embraced and feeling inspired day to day. So thanks to Caleb Swanigan and welcome home to Portland and the Portland Trailblazers.
Sarah: [06:07] We're also excited to announce that here on team Sarah 2020 we have officially hired Russell Lum as our new field director. Russell has worked in politics, organizing and social justice for nine years and he's going to come aboard. He moved to Portland, Oregon and took the job of working for the Oregon fair trade campaign where he's advanced progressive coalition politics on trade and global justice issues. He was in Iowa and California as a field organizer for the Bernie Sanders campaign in 2015-16, in New York state he worked as an advocate for peace and justice priorities for an order of Catholic sisters. He is a social movement builder and that is what we're doing here. So we are so excited to welcome Russell to our team. I am thrilled that day after day I get to come into my campaign headquarters and interact with bright, engaged, talented, energetic, very young, younger than me, most everyone, people who are working so hard to make sure that Portland's future is one that is equitable, inclusive, prosperous. They really do give me hope that this is all possible and that we're really going to make this happen.
Sarah: [07:23] To that end, I took a little bit of time. I was getting beat up a bit in the local newspapers, there had been an op-ed piece that one of the Portland Police officers had written in which he referenced the danger that I presented to the city and there was another columnist who was a little bit concerned perhaps that my tweeting about the Portland Police Bureau after the killing of a person in mental health crisis at 103rd & Stark within 13 seconds of arriving on scene, I was really upset by that, and so on my Twitter, I had—my personal Twitter, not my campaign Twitter—I had reacted to that in a way that was pretty passionate, and he was wondering, I think perhaps whether that meant that I wouldn't be a temporate or thoughtful leader when the time came to serve as mayor of the city. So I decided to respond in writing. When people write things about you, that's one nice thing about the American press is that when one person writes an opinion piece about you, you have your own opinion that you get to write back. And so my opinion was this, that Portland needs progressive leadership if we're going to make progress. I basically laid out that the rising trifecta of climate chaos, social inequality, and the rise of white nationalism is a global problem. And how we respond to these problems is going to determine Portland's future. And although people say that you know in the commission form of government, it's a weak mayor system and the Portland mayor can't really do that much, I disagreed. I argued that the Portland mayor is the de facto urban policy leader for the state of Oregon. We're an economic driver for the state. We're the biggest city in the state, and the mayor of Portland is the urban, the city policy leader of Oregon by default, just by virtue of the fact that we're the biggest city and we're ostensibly a green leader for cities around the globe.
Sarah: [09:21] So in 2016 in the mayoral election in which I ran and came in third place, then State Treasurer, Ted Wheeler was telling Portland voters that he was the progressive, right? He had the right experience and that he had those values and that he had the leadership ability and that he would build coalitions and he would be committed to reforms. And I basically called him out on it. I said, Portland voters were sold a false bill of goods. And then I went further. You know, truly progressive leaders actively implement policies designed to move away from the status quo, unlike their neoliberal counterparts. Progressives strive for justice. They strive to protect the environment. And I am frustrated on my Twitter account, and I will be open about that, that I don't think that there has been bold leadership that has been progressive out of the Portland Mayor's office at all, or the bureaus that he oversees. I do not think that you can call this incremental, very centrist, very laissez-faire or lacking in energy approach to some of these critical reforms that we need, progressive.
Sarah: [10:31] So yeah, I'm frustrated by the lack of community based problem solving. I'm frustrated by the lack of strategic alliances and coalition building. I'm frustrated with a lot. Do I go off on Twitter about it? Sometimes, but you know what? I went further in my op-ed piece and said my neighbors are frustrated too. And really what we need right now is a leader who's going to get frustrated by inaction, a leader who's going to get angry when there's inequality. A leader who's going to courageously stand up against injustice and human rights abuse. We need leaders who will say, I'm antifascist. White nationalists, you have no place in Portland. We need leaders who think that the community is a partner. Not an obstacle to getting things done. We need leaders who are quick learners and who are engaged in communities and have networks of people who they listen to who know better than they do. And in a transformative period, we need leaders who are optimistic, people who are cross pollinators and open to new insights and innovations and ideas and willing to co-create solutions fearlessly. And yeah, so we basically argued in response to recent critiques against me that I'm exactly the kind of mayor that Portland needs right now.
Sarah: [11:48] For those of you who want to read this, you can go to OregonLive, google "Portland needs progressive leadership" and it'll probably pop up, but if you don't get a chance to read it. My point was this, the current administration has failed to make good on its progressive promises to Portlanders. As we head into a new decade, Portland needs a mayor who is less focused on shuffling spreadsheets and more focused on compassionate community centered leadership. We need a leader who can help us seize this critical moment in our city's history to make sure that we're breaking apart oppressive institutions. We need a progressive leader who can bring people together in community to creatively craft new systems, new systems, systems that many cities, many societies have not seen before. Systems in which we can replace greed with the greater good. Systems in which we can replace exploitation and exclusion with liberty and access to opportunity. New systems in which we can replace the despair and disenfranchisement, which we're seeing all across Portland with peace and purpose for our people. So yeah, I encourage you to go read the op ed piece. I was pretty proud that we were able to get that in print on a busy day and I hope you'll read it and maybe get us some feedback online.
Sarah: [13:10] And just a few more things before we move on to your listener questions. We had a few big hearings at city council last week for the residential infill project. This is an attempt for us as Portlanders to start thinking about that missing middle housing, right? It's not the single family homes, it's not these large apartment complexes, but these cottage homes, duplexes, triplexes, fourplexes, and even thinking about six and eight plexes with deep affordability bonuses, so we can get as many Portlanders into housing that they can afford as fast as possible. There were some pushback from some city commissioners who said, you know, this isn't affordable housing with a capital A, but those of us who are supporting it understand that this is affordable with a lowercase A for many working families. And that's also an important part of our housing equation. So yeah, is residential infill the end all be all? No. Is it a wrap around policy? No, it's basically a zoning change so that we can re-legalize the act of building quadplexes and six plexes and eight plexes instead of having single family homes extensively across our city.
Sarah: [14:19] Now for the Tweet of the Week. So this one comes from a pretty high profile Portlander, Rukaiyah Adams. You can find her on Twitter at R-U-K-A-I-Y-A-H-A-D-A-M-S, and she put out a pretty scathing thread in opposition to ODOT's recent announcement that the proposed caps that they're thinking of building across I-5, when we potentially expand that freeway with something that they're calling auxiliary lanes are going to come closer to $1 billion than the $500 million that they were initially citing. Now, not going to say I told you so, but yeah, I told you so. I kinda called that because when you think about these mega project developments, generally they're pitched to the public at about a third of what they'll end up costing the public. So if this ever does get built, which I don't know that it will, chances are pretty good that we'll probably come closer to a billion and a half dollars if history has any influence on how that goes.
Sarah: [15:27] But she had this thread and there was one tweet in particular that I liked because it supported my understanding that there isn't really a good sense of what's going on here. And it was the fifth tweet in her screen and it read like this. Furthermore, furthermore, bead of sweat emoji, y'all meaning ODOT, Oregon Department of Transportation, y'all are offering a staggeringly wide range on the cost to complete the buildable caps, which was generated (air quotes) internally. Oh, okay, Oregon DOT, #OKODOT, and I thought that was hilarious because #OKODOT is how so many of us feel about this boondoggle, this completely failed process, this farce, if you ask me, in terms of civic engagement, how this is moving forward. So yeah, #OKODOT, Rukaiyah gets the Tweet of the Week for coining that.
Sarah: [16:32] Listener questions are coming up, but we just wanted to remind you that Sarah 2020 stickers, spoke cards for your bike, and posters are available for purchase online at sarah2020.com/store. These items are sold at cost for less than $2 each, so please consider supporting the campaign by adding a donation to your purchase. Now back to Sarah and listener questions.
Sarah: [16:57] Before we get started I just want to encourage you, if you haven't taken a look at our Housing for All plan, you can go to sarah2020.com/housing and read it or go back two podcasts ago and listen to our Housing for All episode, or one podcast ago and listen to our conversation with community faith leaders. Although I recommend listening to both of them cause they're both pretty good. But these listener questions come from both that policy and also questions that people submitted to us at the community conversation we hosted and we weren't able to get to while we were taping that podcast.
Sarah: [17:32] So without further ado, this one comes from at build with Joe on Twitter. "As mayor, would you declare a housing disaster or put heat on Oregon Governor Kate Brown to do this? Why? I think this would open renter protection tools prohibited by state law unless we declare it also as mayor. Would you quickly pass a vacancy tax?" So I have to say, you know, Portland already has a housing state of emergency and I don't think we're taking it as seriously as we should. I'm not sure that we would be able to issue a state of disaster. My plan actually asks us to look at the existing state of emergency and treat it with urgency. Declaring these things doesn't really matter unless you act accordingly, and I don't know that we've acted with the necessary urgency even to address our housing state of emergency. So I'm not sure that declaring a disaster would even be forthcoming. That said, I do see some hope on the horizon with Tina Kotek in Salem calling for a statewide housing state of emergency, or homelessness, state of emergency. I'm not 100% sure how she's approaching it. I haven't dug deeply into that policy she's proposing, but I do know that we should be looking at our local declaration to think more carefully about the funds and resources that we need to divert to our housing and homelessness crisis. I think we need to look at how we can implement protective measures for people. I think that how we are partnering and creative partnerships so that we can leverage resources we could be doing better. What are some things that we wouldn't be allowed to do if the emergency wasn't in place, and how can we think about raising public awareness so that people can become involved in this?
Sarah: [19:38] I also think there's something that people aren't talking about and that's the public health emergency around mental health and addiction in our streets. Like everyone talks about this as if this is exclusively a housing supply problem and while I know that housing supply is a huge factor in our current crisis, we also have a parallel problem of people who are experiencing a lack of access to the services that they need. Mental health services, addiction services, trauma informed care, and just basic health needs being met. And so perhaps it's time for us to think a little bit more carefully about, wow, what are the public health crises that we're facing and maybe we should try and leveraging some resources on that front too.
Sarah: [20:26] When it comes to the vacancy tax, I don't think we're ready to go there just yet. I will leave that up to the task force on progressive finance that I'm calling for us to convene in the first year of my administration. I don't want to come up with all of that fiscal policy single handedly. I think it would be better in committee for us to think about all of the possible revenue streams we have at our disposal. How are we using our existing revenue and leveraging that, and how, what are we leaving on the table. But when it comes to vacancies, I don't know that vacancy is Portland's number one problem right now. It might be more administrative trouble than it's worth. And our vacancy rate is at a roughly healthy, again in large air quotes, rate. You have to think about, you know, there's a lot of complexity when it comes to how we even understand, um, vacancies. A lot of those units may be in transition, so someone moving out, someone moving in, and so the numbers can be a little hard to interpret. We also want to understand that with a very, very, very low vacancy rate that's going to increase the rents, that's gonna make it harder for people to get into housing. So having a slightly lower pressure on that is probably a pretty good thing for Portlanders too. What's our sweet spot? That's outside my area of expertise to weigh in on, but a vacancy tax isn't the first thing that I'm thinking about when I'm thinking about revenue streams for housing. But if you want to convince me otherwise, go ahead and send your policy proposals to [email protected] and I'll take a look at them and we'll consider them. As I said, I don't have all the answers, I just hope to tap into people who know more than I do on some of these things, so I would love to hear more about why you think a vacancy tax would be a good idea in Portland and how that might work.
Listener: [22:21] Hello again Sarah. This is Tim McCormick from Portland Neighbors Welcome and The Village Coalition. Thanks for having me on the podcast. I have a question about the accessory dwellings and missing middle housing planks in your platform, which is what you might think of incorporating low cost movable and anchorable housing into these programs. I've been modeling approaches like this in a project with Village Coalition and other partners we call new starter homes. The idea would be for a city program to permit, streamline, and subsidize moveable, very low cost small homes that might stay on wheels as now allowed in Los Angeles for accessory dwellings, or they could be connected to foundations for backyard cottages or cluster housing or used in interim housing villages. They could be ownable by low-income, even formerly homeless residents and could be placed as backyard cottages paying rent to low income homeowners to help them. Also, I think this is probably the fastest and simplest way we could add abundant affordable housing and also it would be lots of fun and the great creative opportunity for local designers and builders to help create a uniquely Portland solution to a big global problem. Anyway, curious what you and any listeners might think about that. Thanks, bye.
Sarah: [23:38] Wow. What a great a question, Tim McCormick, and people can find you on Twitter at @tmccormick if they want to engage with you on this issue. Yes, actually in my housing plan, I think your new starter homes idea is fantastic. I was up in British Columbia recently with some people that I met when I was lecturing in Korea last year who were from the housing authority at British Columbia and also from their co-ops, the co-ops BC that are looking at housing co-ops. And what they informed me and I learned about from them is that yeah, this is going to blow people's minds, but the province of BC actually has invested $66 million Canadian. That's about $50 million US, if my math is wrong, please let me know. But I'm into modular multifamily housing that is temporary, can be constructed more quickly than permanent housing and can provide immediate relief to people living without a home residence. There are given supports such as skills training, health and social services care, they get two meals a day and opportunities to connect with community groups, volunteer work, and social events.
Sarah: [24:58] Now to me, this is a lot of what we need to be thinking about in the Portland model, right? So what I proposed in my housing plan is actually in part of my Urban Development Innovation Groups to think about how can we streamline all sorts of modular affordable housing to bring the economic benefits, jobs creation, bridging possibly the urban-suburban, suburban-rural divide depending on where we're building this modular housing. I'm shortening development timelines by making it easier, as you suggest, to move from place to place in the city without a lot of bureaucratic red tape, bringing down construction costs of both temporary and transitional housing, and even reducing the carbon footprint of our buildings. And I think Portland should be exploring this emerging economic opportunity with enthusiasm and urgency.
Sarah: [25:51] I did learn this week I went to the opening of Holst architecture's new headquarters in the central East side. Uh, one of our neighbors over here in central East side. And I heard about a project that they were building in Kenton in partnership with Transitions Projects Inc, which is one of our low income social housing providers. And thinking about the challenges that they faced bringing that online. One of the analogies they gave me was it felt like we were walking in an attic and just hitting our head on every beam as we went. And my hope is that if you have a mayor in City Hall who understands that this is a problem, that we should be making this easier, than perhaps, the mayor using their position in the city to reduce red tape for some of these innovative partnerships with social benefit. I think we can do a lot of really good things much faster than we're already doing. So thanks for your hard work in the Portland Neighbors Welcome and in the Village Coalition. And I look forward to talking with both of those organizations more about how we can bring more housing online for Portlanders.
Sarah: [26:59] I thought last week's community conversation with faith leaders was an inspiring opportunity to hear from Portlanders who are working on issues that matter to them and their communities driven by values, largely driven with compassion, driven by a sense that we all have a role to play in addressing some of our most pressing problems. We'll be having our next community conversation at the beginning of February. We don't have it firmed up who our presenters will be. We have a good idea of where we're headed. It's going to be around closing the loop and thinking about recycling and closed loop systems as a pathway to economic opportunity, especially for frontline communities and people on the margins. If you want details about that, you can sign up for our newsletter at sarah2020.com and then you'll get the details of that once they're finalized.
Sarah: [27:50] But now I'm going to go into a few questions that we got at that community conversation. And for those of you who don't know, we had representatives, pastors from the Christian faith, a nonprofit Muslim faith organization, and a synagogue here on the east side of Portland, talking about the various programs and things that they're working on in their community.
Sarah: [28:12] So one question we got was how does personal responsibility factor into the homelessness problem? I'm not sure whose personal responsibility we're talking about here. I think one of the biggest things that we need to address when it comes to personal responsibility for homelessness is the fact that there's so much greed that goes on that we have people like Jeff Bezos who could solve homelessness overnight if he wanted to write a big check, but he doesn't. And so where's his personal responsibility in this problem? Right? Where is the personal responsibility on the part of our current mayor who opposed something like the Portland Clean Energy Fund when that was a policy that was led by frontline communities who have the biggest interest in making good policy that meets their community's needs for the future. And he partnered, you know, our mayor partnered with the Portland usiness Alliance to oppose that. So where's the personal responsibility there? I don't like the idea that we're going to place the responsibility for the social crisis of poverty on individuals. These are systemic problems. And we need to understand that personal responsibility means those of us with privilege, exercise it whenever we're possible, that those of us who can serve, serve, when we are able, and those of us without that capacity, while we don't blame and we don't judge other people who may or may not be experiencing the world differently from us, but that what we do is we use our privilege, we use our power and we use our voices in support of vulnerable people without judgment. So yeah, personal responsibility. I put it on the billionaire and millionaire class, not on people experiencing poverty, addiction, mental health crisis, racism, sexism, or any of the other systems of oppression that might have got people homeless in the first place.
Sarah: [30:01] So in that vein, we have another question, and I'm just going to come at this straight on, not really with the same level of sarcasm I used in the last one, but this notion that I want to follow up on a story of a homeless person who had rational reasons to decline services. I have noticed that many unemployed people living on the street find that a rational choice. That's better than opting for a minimum wage job with no job security. How can we make reentering the workforce and living inside a better choice? I would take issue with this, and again, we need to look at these as structural problems. I have not met people experiencing homelessness who wouldn't prefer to have housing that worked for them. What we have to look at is the various situations that people are facing, whether they're veterans, whether they're people who have experienced addiction and end up unhoused because of that, whether they're people who have mental health crises or other health crises, just physical health crises, whether they've lost their job or perhaps they've been in a dysfunctional or abusive relationship, we shouldn't be putting the burden on individuals to try to surmount structural inequality. And so I'm going to move away from this line of reasoning when we talk about solutions because these anecdotal cases, one, I'm just not privy to them. I don't see what other people are seeing. Two, I understand that people are complex and that their life experiences are complex and that when it says declining services, we don't know what their experiences are in the world. We don't want people tipping into the criminal justice system where life gets even more expensive and harder. We don't want people feeling unsafe and insecure. So we have to be thinking about trauma informed care. We need to be thinking about public health responses and we need to be thinking about compassionate solutions for everyone based on what they need and regardless of what their housing status is.
Sarah: [32:03] So here's the next question we're going to go into. It says, I've mentioned and voiced concerns of displacement, livability, and gentrification in terms of sense of place, but I haven't really talked that much about existing communities and their needs or wants for their people. What type of listening and conversations are you and the campaign doing to ensure that we don't get caught up in "the potential of a neighborhood," but rather embrace and celebrate the culture and community that already exists?
Sarah: [32:29] I'd actually argue that I do a lot more of talking about and talking with existing communities about their needs and wants then most candidates when it comes time for me to put together any policy, whether it was Green New Deal, Rethinking Public Safety, or Housing, those were the first people that I went to and talked about what does your community need and want for your place. And when you look at my policies, you can see that it's clearly reflected. So for each policy at the very top of the agenda, not only do you see anti-displacement treated with serious policy concern, but you also see the number one bullet point in my housing plan is community led strategic planning processes wherein we take our city planning Bureau that has a very skilled staff and instead of them telling communities what they need and want to happen, they have then used their bureau's capacity, reoriented that toward neighborhood sensitive community-led planning processes so that people who are actually experiencing homelessness, neighborhoods in transition, displacement, are leading on the solutions.
Sarah: [33:41] I personally think that's pretty innovative. And you've seen that in every policy, whether it's the community oversight of policing or the community-led planning processes in the Green New Deal or even the corridor anti-displacement policies that I lay out in the housing plan, I've consistently centered existing communities and their needs and wants both in my understanding of how these policies need to come together and also in the policies that I've then laid out about how we bring that to fruition. Because the whole basis of my campaign and my candidacy is that I am a community centric, community driven, community supported candidate. Everything I do is in community. I would be nothing without my community and I have faith in the power of community to help us meet our most pressing problems with the necessary backing, right, with the knowledge of the people who are in a place with the understanding and connections that those people bring and the expertise, if you will, of that place that is embedded with the people in a place.
Sarah: [34:46] So yeah, I encourage you to take a look at those policies and dig in on anti-displacement and community led solutions because they really are the cornerstone. My entire campaign pivots on them. And if I'm not really hitting that hard enough in my messaging or you don't have clarity around that, shoot me a quick note and let me know how I could be doing better. That's [email protected]
Sarah: [35:08] And our last question before we wrap up, this one was also collected at the community conversation with faith leaders we had last week. Although it's not about that, it says "community land trusts were actually founded to provide a whole new system of land tenure, not just means of a few lucky low income people to get into homeownership as some of our current community land trusts seemed to be modeled on. The Burlington Community Land Trust, now the Champlain Housing Trust has long served renters and small businesses as well as prospective homeowners. How can we move toward the Burlington model and perhaps bring in folks of all income levels?" I love this question. I think land trusts are pivotal. I've outlined that I think that community land trusts are pathways to ownership and prosperity in my housing plan, bullet point 5-d if you want to go take a look at it. I understand that home ownership shouldn't be necessarily exclusively the program, but I do understand that there are also communities in Portland for whom home ownership is still perceived as, and potentially in reality their primary pathway to wealth creation. So we need to honor people's experience in that realm as well. But what I do understand you saying is that we need to partner with existing housing and culturally specific organizations to make sure we're focusing on permanently affordable housing, whether it's rental or owned. And we also need to think about what does it mean to create spaces for small businesses to thrive and prosper. Hey, maybe we should try some of this out with one of the golf courses. What do you think?
Sarah: [36:47] I encourage you to take a look again at sarah2020.com/housing and give us your feedback, however you're feeling good about that. Well, thank you for listening. I appreciate you spending your time with me and your commitment to making Portland a better place by being civically engaged. I just want to give you one more reminder. You can come to tonight's forum, support me and support this movement at 6:30 PM at the Sunnyside Community House, 3520 SE Yamhill Street, and if you want more information just go to sarah2020.com/january21 and that's January spelled out J-A-N-U-A-R-Y 21. All right, take care, talk to you next time.
Announcer: [37:29] Thanks for listening to Our Portland. If you have a question for Sarah, record a voice memo on your phone and email it to [email protected], or use the #OurPortland hashtag and send us a message on social media. There are lots of ways to support Sarah's people-powered campaign. Go to sarah2020.com and sign up to be a monthly supporter of $5, $10, or even $35 between now and election day in May, 2020. Find out more sarah2020.com. You can also show your support by visiting our merch store at sarah2020.com/store. And tonight, show your support for Sarah at the 2020 Portland Mayoral Candidate Forum, hosted by Multnomah County Democrats, BerniePDX, and East County Rising. That's the Portland mayoral candidate forum tonight, Tuesday, January 21st at Sunnyside Community House, 3520 Southeast Yamhill Street from 6:30 to 8:30. Thanks again for listening to our Portland. This has been a production of friends of Sarah for Portland.