The City has denied a permit for a charity bike ride that's been a Portland tradition for 32 years.
The motorcycle group ABATE has been told it can't do its annual Christmastime ride for the Shriners Hospital because the City says it will cost too much.
The bikers gather every year to bring hundreds of Teddy Bears to seriously ill children. They usually take over the Ross Island Bridge and ride on streets up to the hospital for 45 minutes.
According to their website the following are the reasons the City has said no:
|Photo by Biker-Events.com|
1. Our parade is the only parade that fully closes off all traffic access.
2. The Portland Police have observed bikers not stopping at the hospital, but continuing on their way down the hill. For this reason, they believe the parade is not truly about the kids, but motorcyclists “out for a ride”.
3. The Police indicated the large number of officers needed to operate our parade. They often do not have enough officers, causing them to ask other agencies for help.
4. The City is short on money and our parade is too big and too costly – last year the Police cost was $12,500.
5. The City of Portland Transportation Bureau indicated that Powell Blvd. is under DOT jurisdiction. The Transportation Bureau indicated we cannot shut down a major State highway for any amount of time without DOT consent. Also, the DOT would be required to notify all transportation companies that a portion of Hwy 26 would be closed for our parade. The cost of the notification is $1,600.
6. The Police indicated we did not have a weather plan. If there were bad weather, all officers would need to be notified 24 hours in advance of their shift that they would not be working that day, or the City would still be required to pay them for the day.
The City's politically prostrate response to Occupy Portland cost Portland taxpayers millions of dollars in Police Bureau overtime. That overtime continues to tally as Officers spend their time testifying in court. Sam Adams' Police Bureau offers the Naked Bike Ride a Police escort. The Bicycle Transportation Alliance and Bike Portland tout the event, but not only do not pay for it, the City gives the BTA grant money to operate.
Interesting, no, that the City ran out of money when decent people wanted to do something decent for charity and now there's no money left? They should have thought of that. Prioritizing and anticipating needs are things leaders are supposed to do.
The City has made a clear choice. If you're a big player such as Providence Hospital, you can have a permit to close multiple bridges. If you're an anti social group with a liberal agenda not only do you not have to get a permit for illegal camping in the public square the City Council members will march with your parades. If you're a group of mostly naked male pedalphiles you get an ole from Sam Adams' Police Bureau.
On the road to keeping Portland "Weird," City officials who have long since "Peter Principled" past competence, forgot about the rest of the people who believe in common decency and modesty--like the men and women who ride their Harleys to give away hundreds of toys to sick kids.