Man sues city, mayor for records on homeless shelter project

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A Portland man is suing the city and Mayor Ted Wheeler, claiming the mayor’s office has improperly kept secret records about a homeless shelter project.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports Tyler Bechtel filed a public records request for city and county emails related to the shelter plan. Bechtel claims Wheeler’s office acknowledged it had some records, but a city paralegal withheld an email and attachment, saying state law allows it to keep the records secret because they contain exempt financial and personal information and because the records contain “internal advisory communications.”

Bechtel claims the city erred on procedural grounds because it should have given him copies of the records with confidential portions blacked-out. The city disagreed in its own filings.

Wheeler’s office declined to comment.

Bechtel and other critics of the shelter say it would be too close to a school and too far from the offices of social services agencies.