Update Jan. 15, 2021: Food Waste Policy Delayed
Effective February 1, 2021 Metro is delaying implementation of the Business Food Waste Requirement by an additional year. The policy, which requires establishment of a business food waste collection program for certain food service businesses, was originally scheduled to begin on March 30, 2020. On September 10, 2020 Metro amended associated administrative rules to delay the effective date by one year to March 30, 2021. After careful consideration of the ongoing effects of COVID-19 on the business community, implementation for the largest businesses will be delayed by an additional year--to March 30, 2022. Administrative rules will again be amended effective February 1. Read rules here.
Update Aug. 25, 2020: ORLA commends Metro for taking action in response to these uncertain times by drafting rules to delay the business food waste requirement by one year. We have submitted comments to Metro asking that the implementation be delayed until all jurisdictions enter into Phase 3. To read our comments, click here.
Update Sept. 21, 2018: Metro has updated draft administrative rules to guide the implementation of its business food scraps separation policy, adopted by the Metro Council on July 26. The draft administrative rules were available for public comment through Friday, Sept. 28. Read more.
Portland Area Businesses to Be Subject to Food Scrap Policy
As part of ORLA's ongoing engagement with Metro on the food scraps, ORLA President & CEO Jason Brandt and Director of Business Development Marla McColly recently testified at Metro’s public hearing against the proposed food scrap mandate. ORLA and our members have been involved in the past in the voluntary collection of food scraps and we testified to that fact and the fact that participants in the past have exceeded the goals set by Metro. (Read ORLA's comments)
We also raised concerns about the logistics of food scrap collections across the Metro area, about the implementation dates and about issues around public health and safety if food scraps are not picked up in a timely manner. In addition to ORLA there was opposition to the plan from local governments in both Sherwood and Hillsboro, citing the lack of analysis on the costs to implement the new mandate and the ability of local governments (especially in Washington County) to efficiently dispose of food waste. Despite ORLA’s efforts and those of local governments, Metro Council voted in favor of the staff recommendation for a food scrap mandate on a 7-0 vote.
The mandate is scheduled to start on March 1, 2020 and will be implemented based on the amount of food waste generated by businesses. ORLA will continue to monitor the implementation of this program and provide information to our members. As the program is rolled out, if you experience problems or have concerns, please share those with Greg Astley, ORLA Director of Government Affairs, at Astley@oregonrla.org so we can keep Metro informed as to the effectiveness and success of their mandate.
In the news
International Society of Hotel Associations Honors ORLA and Portland Lodging Alliance with 2020 Award of Excellence
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 23, 2020
Christina Pappas | 1-617-536-0590
BOSTON, MA - The International Society of Hotel Associations (ISHA) announced its Awards of Excellence, honoring the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association and Portland Lodging Alliance for their Hospitality with Heart downtown cleanup events.
In September 2020, ORLA’s Portland Lodging Alliance teamed up with SOLVE Oregon, the Portland Business Alliance, Clean & Safe, Travel Portland, and the City of Portland for the 2nd annual Hospitality with Heart litter cleanup event, bringing over 500 volunteers and community members together to improve the wellbeing of our city. Since then, the Portland Lodging Alliance has been helping coordinate monthly cleanup events.
The ISHA Awards of Excellence recognizes those lodging associations who have had exceptional programs in the areas of Communications, Events and Fundraising, Government Affairs, Member Programs and Public Relations over the past year.
The Awards of Excellence winners include:
“ISHA is pleased to recognize these six award winners,” stated Christina Pappas, Executive Director of ISHA. “While the majority of the programs focus on pandemic response to members and the industry, these programs truly help set the standard for others to follow.”
ISHA presents the annual Awards of Excellence for the best lodging association programs and services and are widely recognized as the best of the best within the hotel and lodging association industry representing innovation and creativity that has brought tangible results to the association and its members. Award winners receive complimentary registration to a future ISHA Conference.
ISHA provides professional development and networking opportunities for lodging associations, and represents the unified voice of state lodging associations in collaboration with our national industry partners. For more information visit www.isha.biz.
Newly announced restrictions on indoor restaurant spaces defy logic, data, and goals designed to reduce virus spread in Oregon
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 6, 2020 (Updated 11.9.20)
Jason Brandt, President & CEO, ORLA
503.302.5060 | JBrandt@OregonRLA.org
Wilsonville, OR– Today, the Oregon Governor’s office announced new restrictions on restaurants located in specific counties. The restrictions take effect next week and further reduce the total number of people, including staff, that can be on premise. The new restrictions for specific counties will change the current maximum of 100 people indoors and reduce the maximum to 50 people indoors. In addition, group dining at restaurants in affected counties will be reduced to a maximum of 6 people. The two-week pause applies to Multnomah, Marion, Jackson, Malheur and Umatilla counties. On Monday, Nov. 9, four more counties were added to the pause list; Washington, Clackamas, Baker and Union counties.
“We have said all along we were going to follow the data as a state and we have some of the most comprehensive, transparent data in the country being provided by the Oregon Health Authority in their weekly COVID reports,” said Jason Brandt, President & CEO for the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association. “These new restrictions do not follow the data available to us. This action will directly result in more Oregonians interacting in uncontrolled, private environments as opposed to restaurants with controlled, regulated environments.”
The Oregon Health Authority’s weekly COVID report is published mid-week with the latest edition released on Wednesday, November 4. A copy can be obtained through the following link:
The Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association (ORLA) remains committed to thorough weekly reviews of any workplace outbreaks connected to the industry. In the latest edition, only 2 foodservice locations are identified out of approximately 75 workplace outbreaks across the state. The workplace outbreak section can be found starting on Page 22 with details included in Table 7 of the weekly report.
“We are one of the largest employers in Oregon and the efforts being undertaken by our operators across the state is nothing short of monumental. The weekly data continues to prove the importance of controlled, regulated environments like restaurants as an alternative to private gatherings,” said Brandt. “We are literally making decisions that could drive us in the wrong direction as a state.”
“We have a role to play in providing safe alternatives to private settings. We need more opportunity to be a part of the solution.”
Early in the COVID-19 crisis, the Governor’s office convened the Coronavirus Economic Advisory Council, but the council was disbanded months ago with no alternative for collaboration amongst industry leaders and health experts. ORLA is recommending an economic advisory council be reestablished immediately to assist the Governor’s office with the intelligence needed to understand the wide-ranging impacts to local economies triggered by new regulations.
“There will be thousands of operators across the state who will be unable to comprehend an additional arbitrary limit on the total number of people they can have indoors with no consideration given to the square footage available,” said Brandt. “We will have less paychecks to provide to struggling Oregonians, less opportunity for Oregonians to take a ‘mental health break’ in controlled restaurant environments, and we will drive more people to unregulated, private gatherings leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday.”
Restaurants able to physically distance guests by party with at least the recommended six feet between tables, should be allowed to do so without arbitrary restrictions. For establishments with a larger footprint, capping capacity to 50 or 100 people when they can safely seat more means robbing them of the opportunity to keep people employed and keep Oregonians from struggling more than they already have this year.
With some reports suggesting as many as 85% of independent restaurants will close without some form of financial assistance or less arbitrary regulation from government, further reducing restaurants’ ability to generate revenue makes that figure seem even more likely.
ORLA is creating an online interface to track Oregonian paychecks lost from restaurants located in counties where the additional restrictions will take effect. Operators will share their business name, their county location, and the number of paychecks lost due to the new restrictions.
“We believe wholeheartedly in collaboration and partnership and our industry must continue to do whatever we can to mitigate virus spread and support the heroes in the health care sector who are putting their lives on the line to save their fellow Oregonians,” said Brandt. “We have a role to play in providing safe alternatives to private settings. We need more opportunity to be a part of the solution.”
The Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association is the leading business association for the foodservice and lodging industry in Oregon, which is comprised of approximately 10,000 foodservice locations and 2,000 lodging establishments with a workforce prior to COVID of 183,191. Roughly 30%, or 55,000 jobs, remain lost in the industry as a result of the COVID pandemic.
PORTLAND - SEPTEMBER 30
Earlier this month, over 500 volunteers came together to clean up downtown Portland and now there's another cleanup event planned for September 30th. This is another opportunity for the hospitality industry to show our community what we are capable of on behalf of our City, our businesses and our employees.
Join the Portland Lodging Alliance, ORLA staff, SOLVE, Miller Nash Graham & Dunn, Schlesinger Companies, and the Portland Business Alliance for a Downtown Litter Cleanup Day! We'll be meeting at parks and businesses throughout downtown, giving each check-in location ample space to clean and improve. All cleanup supplies will be provided.
Wednesday, September 30, 2020
8:45 AM - 9:30 AM Check-in (runs until 11:30 am)
Portland - different locations
There will be several starting locations in Portland including: The Benson Hotel, South Park Blocks, Salmon St. Springs, and I-405 Corridor. Pre-registration is required to ensure staggered start times for social distancing and for equipment pick-up.
LINCOLN CITY - OCTOBER 9
It has been amazing to see everyone come together in support of the community during both the pandemic and now these horrendous fires. The goodwill towards helping each other is a tremendous lift as we continue to fight through these challenges. One opportunity where we can help the coast community is the Lincoln City Hospitality Beach Clean-Up, an event ORLA organized with the help of SOLVE Oregon. This community-building event will showcase once again the love and support we have for Lincoln City.
Friday, October 9th, 2020
10:00 am -12:00 pm
D River Wayside in Lincoln City
Understanding the staffing issues you may face, having at least one member from your team participate would be outstanding and greatly appreciated. Please also share this information with others in the community, as we encourage your colleagues, family and friends to join us. Thank you!
Update Sept. 4: Over 500 volunteers participated in the cleanup event and 3,290 pounds of trash out were removed out of downtown Portland! Many thanks to all the volunteers from Portland hotels, the Portland Lodging Alliance, Portland Business Alliance, and ORLA staff for their efforts. Some of the news coverage:
Portland, Aug. 27 - SOLVE, Portland Business Alliance, Portland Lodging Alliance, and others are rallying together to host a cleanup of Downtown Portland on September 3. This event open to the public for anyone who is interested in volunteering for the cleanup effort. Register here.
SOLVE has hosted several cleanups downtown since June, supporting hundreds of Portlanders who have wanted to care for their community through volunteer litter cleanup. The purpose of the September 3 Downtown Portland Cleanup is to send a clear message to the Portland community that the Portland business district is an open, safe, and clean place to visit, while inviting the community to join the effort.
“As the challenges in Portland continue to impact businesses, I think we all have a responsibility” explains George Schweitzer, Chairman for the Portland Lodging Alliance and Managing Director of The Benson Hotel. “This is an important event for businesses to come together, along with the Portland community at large, to show that we are a strong and resilient city, and that we can come together to restore our vibrant streets so that people can feel safe to explore and help our businesses thrive.”
Kris Carico, CEO of SOLVE echoes his sentiments stating, “SOLVE prides itself on offering a safe space for anyone who wants to make a positive difference in their community. A volunteer litter cleanup brings everyone together because it is a simple activity that all can support. At the end of the day, it’s about caring for the place we call home.”
The event will begin at multiple locations throughout downtown, to accommodate the need for social distancing during volunteer check-in, while also allowing for the maximum amount of interested volunteers to participate given group gathering restrictions. The event will follow all SOLVE’s COVID-19 Safety Guidelines including requiring participants to wear a face covering, maintain a minimum of six feet of distance, and only providing sanitized cleanup equipment to volunteers, among other measures.
Volunteers will focus on removing large items of litter and debris, while also focusing on picking up cigarette butts that often end up in storm drains and pollute the nearby Willamette River and other waterways. Community members who would like to get involved in the volunteer event should visit solveoregon.org to pre-register.
SOLVE is a statewide non-profit organization that brings Oregonians together to improve our environment and build a legacy of stewardship. Since 1969, the organization has grown from a small, grassroots group to a national model of volunteer action. Today, SOLVE mobilizes and trains tens of thousands of volunteers of all ages across Oregon to clean and restore our neighborhoods and natural areas, and to build a legacy of stewardship for our state. Visit solveoregon.org for more information.
The Portland Business Alliance is greater Portland’s Chamber of Commerce. Our mission is to create opportunity and advance well-being for all who live and work in the greater Portland and SW Washington region. Our vision is a healthy and resilient business ecosystem. Visit PortlandAlliance.com for more information.
The Portland Lodging Alliance is a volunteer-led sub-chapter of the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association (ORLA). Members of ORLA's staff will be participating in this event alongside the Portland Lodging Alliance in support of the lodging industry and improving the downtown environment.
Contact: Larissa Gordon, 860-942-9108, email@example.com Contact: Larissa Gordon
[Aug. 25, 2020] - The following letter was submitted by ORLA to Metro Council in response to the delayed implementation of the Business Food Waste Requirement
Metro Council -
As you are well aware, the foodservice industry has been devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic. This virus scares many of our customers and workers from coming back until it’s safe. Employers are scrambling to try to pivot their business models and maintain enough cashflow to keep their employees’ jobs intact. People have poured their lives into their small business, only to see it jeopardized by something completely out of their control. It’s no surprise we’re seeing closure after closure.
The Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association commends Metro for taking action in response to these uncertain times. While the business food waste requirement has worthy goals, this pandemic calls for foodservice operators to dedicate all attention and resources available to protecting their workers and their jobs. By delaying the implementation of these rules, you are recognizing this challenge, and for that, we say thank you.
Our recommendation to Metro is to consider delaying implementation until all jurisdictions under Metro’s purview have entered Phase 3. The foodservice industry is built on hospitality and face to face interaction. We will not enter any sort of normalcy until our customers and workers feel safe enough to venture outside their homes and see friends and family. Until then, many operators will simply not have the resources in personnel, time, or financial capital to dedicate to this important business change. In the interim, we are more than happy to continue as your partner in providing educational opportunities to foodservice operators to help eliminate waste and reduce costs.
Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association
[Metro] Comment on implementation delay
On March 20, 2020 Metro temporarily delayed implementation of the Business Food Waste Requirement for 6 months in order to assess the effects of COVID-19 and to allow time make a permanent decision about the program. Given the breadth of impacts of the pandemic Metro has chosen to further delay implementation and is in the process of amending Administrative Rules to reflect this change.
Metro is seeking comments and feedback in relation to the implementation date change and resulting proposed changes to the Administrative Rules.
Administrative rule 4.000-4.085
OREGON HOSPITALITY FOUNDATION AWARDS FUNDS TO FOURTEEN RESTAURANTS FEEDING FRONTLINE WORKERS AND VULNERABLE COMMUNITIES DURING PANDEMIC
PORTLAND, Oregon– Updated August 3, 2020 – While the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting everyone, the hospitality industry was the first hit by closures and one that has been especially devastated by its impact. The Oregon Hospitality Foundation(OHF) is proud to announce awards to fourteen restaurants throughout Oregon that responded to the incredible need for food by creating innovative programs to help feed their communities – from essential workers to unemployed restaurant staff and food-insecure neighbors. In addition to the generous support from the Grubhub Community Relief Fund, OHF will donate a percentage of proceeds from its virtual event series, Takeout & A Movie, to support restaurants and tourism partners across the state that are making a difference in our communities.
According to the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association, as of April 2020 81% of restaurant employees (approximately 127,000 people in Oregon) had been laid off or furloughed. “Being of service is at the heart of the hospitality industry,” said OHF Executive Director Wendy Popkin. “The Oregon Hospitality Foundation is proud to help raise funds and contribute to family-owned restaurants across the state who are stepping up to feed people in their communities.”
OHF Hospitality Help Fund Restaurant Awards
The following Oregon restaurants received funds for their ongoing work to feed frontline workers, food-insecure citizens, and unemployed service industry professionals:
About Oregon Hospitality Foundation
The Oregon Hospitality Foundation (OHF) was established in 1992 and is a nonprofit 501c3 that supports the charitable relief needs and ongoing educational and training requirements of Oregon’s Hospitality industry. OHF’s partners include restaurants, lodging, attractions and other tourism businesses and organizations throughout Oregon. Recently, OHF created the Oregon Hospitality Help Fund as an emergency relief fund to raise money for its hospitality partners whose businesses and employees are struggling during the pandemic. To date more than ten restaurants have received funding to donate an estimated 11,500 meals. Oregon restaurants interested in applying for these funds can complete an online application here. For more information about supporting our work with a donation or sponsorship, please follow us on Facebook and Instagram.
Lisa Hill, firstname.lastname@example.org, 503.730.8055
Call to Action: Ask Portland City Council to Lead an End to Violence while Supporting Ongoing Peaceful Protests
The City of Portland needs to hear from you. Safety and security for restaurant and lodging employees and our guests is paramount as is ongoing support for the rights of all Portlanders to peacefully protest. We officially have a major crisis on our hands relating to nightly violence and ongoing national media attention. Underrepresented populations must continue to be heard and it is time to take meaningful steps forward with reforms that matter.
Please ask Portland City Council to lead the city and put an end to the violence now. Any instigation of violence is unacceptable and must be separated from the importance of ongoing peaceful protests. Stopping this violence is crucial to the future of Portland and how the city is embraced by those who visit here for years to come.
Oregon Hospitality Foundation's Takeout & A Movie Event Presents Bicycle Adventure Shorts from the Filmed By Bike Festival
Event proceeds benefit the Cycle Oregon Fund which provides grants to Oregon’s tourism-dependent rural communities struggling during the pandemic
PORTLAND, Oregon – July 8, 2020 – The next Takeout & A Movie event, hosted by the Oregon Hospitality Foundation (OHF), will feature an interactive livestream YouTube event with bicycle adventure films from Filmed by Bike, an Oregon-produced film festival on Sunday, July 26 from 6-8 p.m. This adventure-packed movie night will take arm-chair travelers and bike enthusiasts to the far-reaching edges of the globe as international filmmakers document cyclists exploring the rugged open road. Event proceeds will benefit the Cycle Oregon Fund, which provides grants to Oregon’s rural tourism-dependent communities that are struggling during the pandemic and the Oregon Hospitality Help Fund, which supports the training and philanthropic relief needs of Oregon’s tourism and hospitality industry.
“The pandemic has postponed many larger outdoor events in Oregon, like Cycle Oregon, and we need to do what we can to support the hospitality businesses in rural communities that depend on tourism dollars,” said Steve Schulz, Executive Director of Cycle Oregon. “Our partnership with OHF and Filmed by Bike shows just how strong we can be when we collaborate on a community-based solution.”
TAKEOUT & A MOVIE Event Details
The Filmed by Bike team has gathered some of their favorite Oregon cycling routes and encourages you to explore the state by two wheels and support the restaurants, hotels and attractions that have been deeply impacted by the pandemic.
“Our first Takeout & A Movie event in May raised enough money for our restaurant grant recipients to fund an additional 11,500 meals to help feed people in need in communities across Oregon,” said Wendy Popkin, Executive Director of the Oregon Hospitality Foundation. “Now, we are focused on raising awareness of the pandemic’s effect on travel and its impact to Oregon’s rural communities by partnering with Cycle Oregon. Enjoy a ride or hike during the day, order takeout from your favorite restaurant, and then tune in to experience exciting adventure films from your own living room.”
About Oregon Hospitality Foundation
The Oregon Hospitality Foundation (OHF) was established in 1992 and is a nonprofit 501c3 that supports the charitable relief needs and ongoing educational and training requirements of Oregon’s Hospitality industry. OHF’s partners include restaurants, lodging, attractions, and other tourism businesses and organizations throughout Oregon. Recently, OHF created the Oregon Hospitality Help Fund as an emergency relief fund to raise money for its hospitality partners whose businesses and employees are struggling during the pandemic. For more information about supporting our work with a donation or sponsorship, please visit www.oregonhospitalityfoundation.org and follow us on Facebook and Instagram.
About Cycle Oregon
Cycle Oregon is a nonprofit organization dedicated to transforming individuals and communities through bicycling. For riders who want an unparalleled Oregon bicycle experience at their own pace, Cycle Oregon hosts a series of fully supported rides that offer a unique perspective of the state, all the while managing every last detail. Proceeds from events go to the Cycle Oregon Fund, which to date has resulted in 325 grant awards totalling over $2.3 MM for Oregon communities. For more information, please visit www.cycleoregon.com.
About Filmed by Bike Festival
Filmed by Bike was founded in 2003 by Ayleen Crotty as a Portland film festival to celebrate the local cycling and filmmaking community. This year, the festival celebrates its 18th year with a successful touring film program as well as a weekend-long interactive YouTube Livestream event in September. For more information please visit www.filmedbybike.org.
Lisa Hill, email@example.com, (503) 730-8055
Compliance extension and clarifications to single-use plastics
Ordinance No. 189537 – passed 6/5/2019; effective 7/5/2019
The City of Portland extended the compliance date for their restrictions on single-use plastics, moving the date from July 1, 2019 to October 1, 2019. They intended to give businesses more time to adjust given the impact of SB 90, which preempts local code.
It also clarifies that plastic utensil self-service stations for restaurants with counter service will still be allowed. There is also an exemption for plastic serviceware that is attached with a beverage container by the manufacturer (e.g. juice boxes), or when an ingredient like salad dressing is packaged with single-use plastic. All meals provided as a social service to vulnerable populations are exempt.
For online orders, dining establishments must coordinate with third-party ordering services to allow for the customer to request plastic serviceware. Compostable and biodegradable plastic are included in the definition of single-use plastic and are banned, but non-plastic material serviceware is allowed.
Short-term rental registration requirements
Ordinance No. 189557 – passed 6/12/2019; effective 7/12/2019
After stalled negotiations with Airbnb and low compliance rates for short-term rental permitting, the City of Portland is following the lead of the City of Santa Monica, CA, which recently had its ordinance affirmed by the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. This ordinance states that home sharing platforms must either reach a pass-through registration data-sharing agreement with the City, or they can choose hosts from a registry of City-approved and permitted rental locations.
No transaction can be completed and no fees can be collected by the home sharing platform unless the short-term rental is on the City registry, or if the home sharing platform has come to an agreement with the City on pass-through registration data-sharing.
Home sharing platforms will be charged $1,000 per illegal booking transaction per day.
The Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association (ORLA) has hired Nicole Peterson as its new Government Affairs Coordinator. Peterson will be the new steward of the Portland Kitchen Cabinet and its steering committee, focusing on grassroots engagement with restaurateurs and supporting their community building efforts.
“We are excited to have Nicole join our team at ORLA to add crucial capacity for our ongoing work in the Portland restaurant marketplace. Business models and paths to sustainability are changing rapidly and there are many opportunities to bring the strengths of restaurants to more Portland community conversations,” said Jason Brandt, President & CEO.
Nicole previously worked as a Research Assistant for a state and local government affairs team in Illinois and worked on a variety of issues from happy hours to baseball stadium renovations. Since moving to Oregon, she has worked in local government, giving her a broader understanding of the issues from the governing body perspective. She received her bachelor’s degree in Social Policy from Northwestern University.
In her new role with the Portland Kitchen Cabinet, Nicole relishes the opportunity to help Portland restaurants and the broader community gather, collaborate, and flourish by providing more opportunities for community engagement and advocacy for the industry. This group of informed, active and motivated hospitality community members serve as industry ambassadors with policymakers, opinion leaders, community leaders and partner organizations. With more than 100 members, the Portland Kitchen Cabinet is a proud partner of the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association and the National Restaurant Association.
Update May 29, 2019 - Portland City Council adopted amendments to the original policy on single-use plastics. The new effective date for the ordinance is October 1, 2019 (it was originally July 1, 2019) and several exemptions to the original ordinance were approved:
Find more details about the policy on the City of Portland FAQ page.
Dec. 5, 2018 - Portland City Council passed a new ordinance to reduce the automatic distribution of single-use plastics in Portland. The City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) worked with the Mayor’s office to research the policies of other cities, conduct a series of workgroup meetings, analyze community feedback and land on a policy recommendation.
The ordinance will include restrictions on plastic service ware (defined as straws, stirrers, utensils and condiment packaging) for the following situations, when applicable to the food and beverage order:
The workgroup consisted of a representative from ORLA, restaurant owners, wholesalers, a medical facility, American Disability Act (ADA) straw users, and environmental advocates. “The Portland restaurant community appreciates the City keeping the ordinance “by-request,” respecting the need for single-use plastics for our customers, especially those in the disabled community. Portland restaurants recognize the need to reduce plastics in the waste stream balanced with the needs of our guests,” noted Greg Astley, ORLA's Director of Government Affairs.
Notification and outreach to businesses will begin in January 2019, and the ordinance will go into effect on July 1, 2019.
Nov. 30, 2018 - Three ORLA members recently served on a workgroup convened by Mayor Ted Wheeler to craft policy related to Single-Use Disposable Plastics (SUD’s) in the City of Portland. The workgroup also included members of the Surfrider Foundation, environmentalists, community members, members of the disabled community and city staff.
The Mayor tasked the workgroup with creating an ordinance around plastic straws but encouraged the group to look beyond just straws as well. Concerns about liability, lack of access to medically necessary plastic straws, and proceeding cautiously led to an “on request” policy for plastic straws for dine-in restaurants. For delivery and take-out orders, employees will need to ask if patrons need utensils or condiment packets before placing any in the take-out carrier or bag.
Specifically, all retail food and beverage establishments and institutional cafeterias, where beverages may be consumed at dine-in areas, shall provide plastic straws and stirrers only after customer request as of July 1, 2019.
Further, as of July 1, 2019, all retail food and beverage establishments and institutional cafeterias, where customers may order take-out and delivery, shall provide plastic utensils and condiment packaging only after asking if the customer needs plastic utensils and condiment packaging and the customer responds affirmatively. This requirement applies to face to face, phone and electronic orders.
Plastic service ware is defined as single-use plastic straws, stirrers, utensils and condiment packaging. Condiment packaging is defined as plastic packaging used to deliver single-serving condiments to customers. This includes but is not limited to single-serving plastic packaging for ketchup, mustard, relish, mayonnaise, hot sauce, coffee creamer, salad dressing, jelly and jam and soy sauce.
For more information:
ORLA Informs Portland City Council of Efforts the Industry is Already Making to Reduce Plastics Use
In July, a work group was formed to discuss policy options to reduce single-use plastics. The work group consisted of restaurants, wholesalers, a medical facility, American Disability Act (ADA) straw users, environmental advocates and ORLA. Among the policy recommendations that came out of the group was a single-use plastic by request policy that would affect all retail food and drink businesses.
ORLA has been actively engaged in these work groups for several months and earlier today Greg Astley, ORLA Director of Government Affairs, attended the Portland City Council Meeting where a "by-request" plastics ordinance was being voted on. The following is testimony submitted on behalf of ORLA:
"Thank you for the opportunity to speak today and for the invitation for our members, restaurant owners and operators, to be a part of the workgroup and the discussion leading to today’s proposed ordinance. We appreciate being involved in the conversation from the start to help shape policy that works for everyone.
As consumers become more aware of the issues of single-use disposables in the waste stream, plastic waste reduction and the restrictions on recycling, restaurants and their suppliers have responded to the requests to reduce use of these items.
In just the last year, two major vendors to restaurants and food service establishments report significant reductions in the ordering of plastic straws. In one case, more than a third fewer straws are being ordered by food service establishments and local restaurants.
Some of our members in Portland are already voluntarily reducing usage with their own by-request straw policies, replacement of plastic straws with alternatives and by asking customers who are getting take-out whether they need plastic utensils.
Hotels and bars are also voluntarily reducing their plastic straw usage. Many of them are already promoting the fact they are a “by-request” restaurant or bar with signage and materials on tables.
Having the option to offer plastic straws to our customers who may be disabled or impaired in some way and whose safety may be at risk with metal or wooden straws is important to us too. We’ve heard from members of the disabled community who need plastic straws as an option for their own well-being and we want to be able to accommodate them.
Portland’s restaurants, hotels and bars are cornerstones in our community. They give generously to worthy causes, feed the hungry and provide a place where people can meet and break bread together. The people who own, manage and run them are Portlanders too and they care about the environment and are sensitive to customers’ requests and feelings. With so many other challenges facing the people running restaurants, hotels and bars, we appreciate the Council’s consideration and approval of a by-request ordinance coupled with education and outreach to our customers."
Update: Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler’s office recently announced a plan to increase the Portland business tax from 2.2% to 2.6% to pay for an additional 58 officers in the police budget. That number was reduced to 49 new officers, however the City Council agreed to hire 55 officers by the 2019-20 budget year. The tax was something of a surprise to us but does not in any way diminish our commitment to increasing the number of police officers in Portland.
The Portland Business Alliance (PBA) is supporting the increase on business taxes and agreed to step up on this tax increase in order to help address Portland’s top issue of homelessness, which impacts businesses and livability throughout the city. The additional revenue will be targeted toward measurable outcomes.
Like the Portland Business Alliance, ORLA is supportive of the focused efforts on homelessness, providing community-based policing and targeting measurable outcomes. Visitors to and residents of Portland should feel safe to walk the streets, day or night, and should believe Portland to be a place welcoming their presence and patronage.
Support for Portland Policy Bureau's Budget Request
As the City of Portland continues to be a preferred destination for many visitors regionally, nationally and internationally, it’s important they feel safe while staying in our hotels, eating at our restaurants and enjoying all we have to offer in the hospitality industry.
With the 2018-2019 budget season well underway, the Mayor’s Office is encouraging constituents with public safety concerns to give testimony in support of Portland Police Bureau’s budget request for additional officers.
The Portland Police Bureau is struggling to fulfill its mission to serve and protect due to a lack of funding and resources. As both the population of Portland and the number of visitors grows, they are being asked to do more with less. There are the fewer officers in the bureau than there were a decade ago, despite a 10 percent increase in Portland’s population. Consequently, the bureau continues to face challenges in patrol staffing, which has led to declining response times. In the last five years, total 911 call volume has increased by over 22%. These calls include a 97% increase in stolen vehicle calls, 64% increase in unwanted persons calls and a 32% increase in disorder calls.
Mayor Wheeler is proposing adding 93 additional sworn positions and 9 additional non-sworn positions at a cost of $12.3 million and a one-time funding request of $8.8 million which includes $2.6 million for technology replacement and $3.8 million for facilities enhancements. This budget request would increase the number of officer positions by approximately 10 percent--on par with Portland’s growth.
Key Points to the Proposal
The Police Bureau's budget requests for additional ongoing resources will advance the bureau’s mission and goals to provide 21st Century Policing services, to support organizational excellence and inclusion, and to rebuild their units to deliver community policing. Priorities include:
Read more on ORLA's engagement in Portland's homeless issues.
Share Your Testimony
We want to show the Mayor we support his priorities to increase public safety and police accountability to enhance livability. Submit your testimony online or attend a public hearing. If you send an email, please Cc: Astley@OregonRLA.org on your message to the City Budget Office so we can share our industry's collective feedback.
Attend a Hearing:
Budget Committee Hearing
May 10, 2018, 6:00pm - 8:30pm
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave., Portland, OR 97204
Council Action to Approve City Budget
May 16, 2018, 2:00pm
Council Chambers, Portland City Hall
1221 SW 4th Ave., Portland, OR 97204
Hospitality Business Leaders Act on Portland’s Homeless Issues
Metro, the agency that manages systems for handling and transporting solid waste, wants to transform how the Portland area handles food waste in an effort to convert our food scraps into renewable energy instead of burying them in a landfill.
In 2016, the Metro Council directed staff to investigate ways to do that. In fall 2017, Metro sought public comment on an initial policy proposal to keep more food scraps from restaurants, grocery stores, and other food service businesses out of landfills and put to better use creating energy, compost or other valuable products. The regional government is in the process of seeking a private company to build a plant that breaks down food waste and turns it into biogas, electricity, or compost.
ORLA is engaged in these discussions, anticipating that many restaurant owners will oppose the new mandates that would produce operational challenges.
Metro has developed a guide for businesses to reduce food waste, focusing on prevention, donation, and composting strategies. Learn more about Metro's campaign at FoodWasteStopsWithMe.org.
Read more on Metro's website
Read more in the Portland Tribune