The Clackamas County Commission held the first of two land use hearings on Wednesday April 12 to affirm the designation of urban and rural reserves in the Metro region in response to the remand by the Oregon Court of Appeals and the Oregon Land Conservation and Development Commission.
While there is a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel for finalizing the urban and rural reserves in Clackamas County, the residents and elected officials of the Stafford Hamlet are still unconvinced of the land designation findings. The HBA delivered official testimony with its continued support on the matter of Clackamas County Chair Jim Bernard and Metro Council Tom Hughes’ pledge to “quickly and collaboratively” finalize the designations of urban and rural reserves in Clackamas County.
At Wednesday’s hearing Chair Bernard affirmed his goal of finalizing the reserves and while the newly elected Commission is no longer working toward the controversial goal of adding land south of the Willamette to the Urban and Rural Reserves, there were several elected officials from jurisdictions within Clackamas County present to testify in opposition to the urban reserve designation of the Stafford area. In particular the Mayor of West Linn, Russ Axelrod, eluded to a continued fight over including West Linn, Tualatin, and Lake Oswego in an intergovernmental agreement between Portland Metro Council and the Clackamas County Commission and designating the Stafford area as undesignated land. Undesignated land remains neither urban nor rural until 75% of all urban designated lands are committed to development. Given that a good deal of land designated urban in Clackamas County is undevelopable, undesignated land in the area is unlikely to ever be designated rural or urban.
Clackamas County is scheduled to hold the second and final public hearing on the urban and rural reserves at 9:30 a.m. on April 19 to hear further testimony and then adopt its ordinance and findings in on the reserves. Multnomah County is scheduled to the same on May 4th. Portland Metro council will send the findings for both Multnomah and Clackamas County to the Oregon Land Conservation and Development Commission for consideration which is targeted for July.
Catch up on the urban and rural reserves happenings in Clackamas County with our previous post Here.