U.S. Federal Court Judge Michael Simon set a date Dec. 19 for a fairness hearing on the Department of Justice Settlement Agreement with the City of Portland. The fairness hearing will open at 9 a.m. Feb. 18, 2014 in the Mark O. Hatfield Federal Courthouse, 1000 Southwest 3rd Ave.
The Albina Ministerial Alliance supports the settlement agreement, which was approved by Portland City Council at a hearing Dec. However Dan Handelman of Portland Copwatch believes the changes in the Agreement, and in the police contract, don’t go far enough.
“Community testimony at that Fairness Hearing, expected to be held sometime in February, could prompt the judge to order changes to the DOJ Agreement that better fix Portland's troubled oversight system and clarify issues around use of force,” Handelman said in a statement.
You can find the “Notice of Fairness Hearing” and the “Testimony Form,” online at http://www.portlandoregon.gov/police/64070 Members of the public are invited to testify, in writing or orally, on the following topics:
Is the Agreement fair to everyone affected?
Is the Agreement reasonable? s the Agreement adequate to solve the problems identified in the Complaint?
You must submit the Testimony Form or a similar written submission no later than January 31, 2014 to the Clerk of the Court in person or via first class mail, or via email to Mary_Austad@ord.uscourts.gov.
If members of the public wish to make comment to the court, they should follow the instructions on the testimony form. If anyone is unable to attend the scheduled hearing and wishes to provide oral testimony, he or she may do so by video and submit a DVD.
Submissions will be retained by the Court until the close of the case, but will not be part of the public record unless the Court orders otherwise.
The Portland Police Bureau website includes information regarding the Department of Justice investigation into the Bureau: http://www.portlandoregon.gov/police/62044