Lawmakers propose new PERS reform, Apple backs two large renewable energy projects and Portland left off DOJ threat list.
Another PERS reform measure proposed
The proposed change would extend the repayment period for the $22 billion deficit, the Oregonian reports. Rather than repaying the debt over the next 20 years, the terms could extend to 25 or 30 years. This plan would reduce public employers’ cost while maintaining benefit levels. But experts say the proposal would actually make matters worse as the payments wouldn’t go toward the principle debt, allowing it to grow further.
Apple reveals itself as mystery renewable energy project backer
Apple announced it has signed purchase agreements with a new wind power project in Gilliam County and the largest solar power plant in Oregon, located in Crook County, the Portland Business Journal reports. The agreements will support Apple’s data center in Prineville.
Justice Department threatens nine sanctuary cities, not including Portland
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions sent threatening letters to nine of the alleged 140 jurisdictions that have affirmed Sanctuary City status and refuse to cooperate with the administration’s immigration crackdown, Willamette Week reports. The letters warn that refusal to cooperate will result in a loss of federal funding. While Portland has already received a similar threat from the Justice Department, the city was not one of the nine determined to have laws that could violate a federal law preventing public officials from releasing immigration status information.
Avangrid Renewables CEO steps down
Frank Burkhartsmeyer, president and CEO of Portland-based Avangrid Renewables, has resigned from the renewable energy company to take a job at another company, according to an internal announcement.
Kafoury delivers State of County address
In her State of the County address chair Deborah Kafoury focused on housing, clean air and immigration.
Ilani Casino opens today
The new casino from the Cowlitz Tribe near La Center, Wash. opens today after years of planning, the Oregonian reports. The Tribe fought multiple legal battles, including a recent case before the U.S. Supreme Court. When the court denied to review the case earlier this month, the casino overcame its final hurdle and set its opening date.
Validated app expands after Portland testing
Validated lets stores and restaurants pay for customers’ rideshare tab to encourage patronage. The app was tested in Portland and Seattle before launching in 11 other cities nationwide, the Portland Business Journal reports.