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Posted on: September 18, 2020

City News Round Up for Friday, September 18

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City News Round Up for Friday, September 18

Please check our agenda center as Committees, Boards & Commissions continue to meet remotely. The Council meets next on Monday, September 21 at 5:30 PM. 

 City Hall remains closed to the general public at this time. Staff continue to serve customers via email, phone, and virtual meetings. The City Clerk’s Office and Parking Office are open for walk-in service via our Myrtle Street entrance. The Treasury Office is processing auto and boat registrations by appointment only via our Congress Street side-entrance. For more information, please visit our COVID-19 page.  

Any questions? Please call 207-874-8300 or email info@portlandmaine.gov

Please remember that you should not visit City Hall if you do not feel well, are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms, have been around anyone who has recently tested positive, or have traveled within the last 14 days to a state that is not on the State of Maine’s exempted list (unless you have a negative test result.) Masks must be worn at all times when inside City Hall. As we head into cold and flu season, we thank you for your cooperation!

Absentee Ballot Information & Early In-Person Absentee Voting
Certain election mailings have generated numerous calls to the City Clerk’s office.

Residents are receiving several absentee ballot applications in the mail. Multiple organizations are distributing these forms. They are not coming from the City of Portland or the State of Maine, but they are legitimate forms that can be used to request your ballot if you have not already done so. In Portland, we’ve received more than 13,000 absentee ballot requests so far and continue to receive about 600 a day. To learn how to request one, click here.

Once you’ve submitted a request (online, by phone, in person, through the mail), it is not necessary to send in any additional applications. Any duplicate submissions received will be rejected.

In addition, many residents have received notification by mail, phone call, or text message that they are not registered to vote. This is a part of the get-out-the-vote effort and they are not connected to the City or State. If you have any concern or question regarding your voter registration status, please email elections@portlandmaine.gov or call 207-874-8677 and we would be happy to assist you. To learn how to register to vote, click here. Remember that in Portland, you can register to vote on Election Day at your polling location. 

WHEN WILL I GET MY ABSENTEE BALLOT / WHEN CAN I VOTE EARLY IN-PERSON?
In Maine, ballots are not available until 30 days before Election Day. Once ballots arrive at City Hall in early October, ballots will be mailed out and early in-person absentee voting at Merrill Auditorium will begin.

Stonyfield Organic and Hannaford Team Up with the City to Transition Fox Field to Organic Maintenance Practices
Stonyfield Organic and Hannaford are teaming up with the City of Portland to help make the great outdoors even greater! On Monday, September 21 at 10:30 AM at Fox Field, reps from each organization will be on hand for the presentation of a $10,000 donation. This event will announce a program to convert Fox Field at Kennedy Park to organic grounds management, ensuring the spaces are free from the use of synthetic pesticides.
Portland is one of 14 cities across the country that is receiving support as part of Stonyfield’s #PlayFree initiative.

The public is welcome to attend the event. Masks are required by all attendees and social distancing measures will be followed throughout the duration of the event.

Portland’s Public Health Division Teams Up to Provide Flu Vaccine Clinics This Fall
Beginning this month, Portland’s Public Health Division, working with its partners, will offer no-cost flu vaccine opportunities at various locations. Additional flu clinics are being conducted at area businesses, at Portland Housing Authority sites, homeless shelters, and assisted living facilities.  

The free public flu clinics will be held at the following locations and times:
Location:  Monument Square
Date:  09/23/20
Time: 1:00-4:00 PM
Location: City Hall, Room 24 (Myrtle Street entrance)
Date: 10/5/20
Time:  12:00-6:00 PM 

City Reminds Marijuana Businesses They Must Be Licensed to Operate
The City’s marijuana ordinance that establishes the types of marijuana businesses that can be licensed to operate in the city went into effect on June 17. The ordinance established the rules for both medical and adult use marijuana. In order to operate in the city of Portland, businesses must obtain a license for the following:  Cultivation, Manufacturing, Retail and Small Scale Caregivers. Existing businesses must immediately apply for a business license in order to legally continue operating. Failure to do so may result in a notice of violation or other enforcement action.

Marijuana business licensing information can be found at the top of this page on the City’s website. 

Payson Park Needs Your Votes!
Payson Park Needs your Votes to win a $25,000 Upgrade. To help, click here and vote for Portland Kiwanis

Voting is open through September 27, 2020. You can cast one vote every 24 hours.

Portland and South Portland Release Joint Climate Action and Adaptation Plan, One Climate Future
The Cities of Portland and South Portland have released a draft of One Climate Future, a joint climate action and adaptation plan. One Climate Future is an innovative regional approach to climate action, bringing together two cities to meet shared climate commitments:  transitioning to 100% clean renewable energy in municipal operations by 2040, reducing community-wide greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2050, and wherever possible, accelerating these reductions through rapid and equitable action by 2030.

Annual Fall Curbside Collection of Leaf Bags/Yard Waste 
The City’s annual fall curbside collection of leaf bags/yard waste starts Monday, October 26 through Friday, November 20. The leaves must be in large, paper biodegradable leaf bags. Place the biodegradable leaf bags curbside on your normal trash day during the above dates and City crews will take care of the rest!  

Portland Harbor Dredge and CAD Cell Projects Fail to Receive Funding Under USDOT BUILD Grant Program
After years of study, planning, design, and permitting work, the Portland Harbor Dredge and CAD project failed to make the list of approved projects announced by the US DOT under the $900M Better Utilizing Investments Leveraging Development (BUILD) program.

The application was filed by the Cities of Portland, South Portland, the Portland Harbor Commission, and support from the Maine Department of Transportation and over 30 private pier and marina owners. To read more about this project, click the link in the headline. 

Portland Offers Enhanced Website 
In partnership with our web provider, CivicPlus® and technology provider Frase, we’ve launched a 45-day trial of a new chat bot feature for our website. Visit www.portlandmaine.gov to check it out (lower right hand corner). We know that you’ve been relying on our site more than ever, and so we hope that by adding the chatbot feature, you’ll be able to receive a near-immediate response and one-click resolution to your inquiry. Check it out today and let us know what you think. The more use it gets, the better we can train it and see if it will be a good long-term solution. 

Come Join the Barron Center Family!
We are hiring Unit Assistants who assist our nursing team and care for our residents to create a homelike environment. Applicants must enroll in our free CNA class and become certified within 12 months. Questions regarding the position should be directed to David Langstaff, Director of Nursing at 207-541-6549 or DLangstaff@portlandmaine.gov. Το apply, click here.

Real Estate and Personal Property Tax Bills Available in October
Fiscal Year 21 Real Estate and Personal Property Tax Bills are not yet available. It is anticipated they will be mailed out in early October 2020 following Council budget approval on September 21, 2020. The tentative due dates are October 30, 2020 and March 19, 2021. 

Property Tax Info
Citizen Self-Service Portal 

Portland Youth Council
The Portland Youth Council has four seats available, and we’re accepting applications through October 2. To learn more about the Youth Council and to access the application, use the link above.

Help Us Count Portland - Take the US Census Now!
It’s Not Too Late - You can still complete the census today.

The 2020 U.S. Census is more than a population count. It’s an opportunity to shape your community’s future. Your voice can make a difference. Click the link above to take the census now. It’s quick and easy. You can respond online, by phone, or by mail. Deadline is September 30! 

City Simplifies Application Process & Increases Assistance Amount for COVID-Rental Assistance Program 
The City is partnering with The Opportunity Alliance to help renters in Portland that have been affected by the COVID-19 crisis. The program provides up to $1,000 in assistance for a maximum of 3 months, as well as up to $250 in utility assistance.  



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