By Carol McCracken (Post # 1,547)
Oral arguments were heard this morning in Superior Court in the case of the Friends of Congress Square Plaza vs. the City of Portland. Attorneys for both sides of the dispute argued before Justice Joyce Wheeler. Representing the city was Jennifer Thompson, Esq. the defendant, and for the plaintiff was Sarah A. McDaniel, Esq. of Douglas McDaniel Campo & Schools.
Judge Wheeler said she will issue a decision by noon tomorrow.
At issue, was the city’s September 13th decision to deny a petition that would have placed an ordinance to the Land Bank law on a referendum for portland voters to vote on.
Although to some, by the content of her questions to both attorneys, it appeared that Justice Wheeler favored the plantiff’s view, no one was making predictions on the outcome of the case. Levin stated the Friends will issue a press release when he learns the outcome of the case.
Following the oral argument this morning, Frank Turek, president of the Friends of Congress Square Park, said: “Everyone believes that the citizens’ initiative is a legislative matter. The city is saying it is administrative and therefore is invalid as an initiative. We believe a citizens’ initiative can’t be administrative.”