Isabella Garcia, Portland Mercury

Isabella Garcia

Portland Mercury

Portland, OR, United States

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Recent articles by Isabella:

Facing Financial Uncertainty, TriMet Leaders Consider Increasing Fare

TriMet board members are considering raising bus and MAX fares for the first time in seven years as the agency’s financial future grows uncertain. The idea was first floated in an October 5 meeting between the board members and TriMet staff. Agency staff is expected to deliver a specific proposal to the board on November 9. “We’re looking for your guidance on a very important question: are we… → Read More

Tuesday, October 18, is the Last Day to Register to Vote

Tomorrow, Tuesday, October 18, is the last day for Oregonians to register to vote in the November 8 general election. Elections officials also encourage voters who need to update their voter registration information to do so by 11:59 pm on October 18. Oregonians can check their voter registration status on the Oregon Secretary of State website. You may need to register to vote if: You recently… → Read More

Oregonians 5 and Older Eligible for Latest COVID-19 Booster Shots

The latest COVID-19 vaccine booster shots are now available for children between 5 and 11 years old in Oregon, Oregon Health Authority (OHA) officials announced in a press conference Thursday. The agency encouraged parents and guardians to call their child’s doctor or pharmacy to schedule an appointment to receive the shot. “This is a time when we gather with friends and family throughout the… → Read More

UPDATE: Two Cooling Centers to Open Sunday in Portland

Update August 7, 12:03 am: Two cooling centers will open at 2 pm in Portland Sunday as temperatures return to the triple digits. The Midland and Gresham libraries have extended their hours until 8 pm to help people stay out fo the heat. The Lloyd Center Mall has also extended its hours until 10 pm on Sunday. Temperatures are expected to peak around 100 degrees Sunday, August 7, and remain in the… → Read More

One Cooling Center to Open Sunday in Old Town

One daytime cooling center will open in downtown Portland Sunday as the region braces for a brief surge in temperature. The National Weather Service issued a heat advisory Friday for Multnomah County starting at noon on Sunday and ending Monday at 8 pm. The heat is expected to peak around 101 degrees on August 7 with an overnight low around 66 degrees—cooler than the average overnight low during… → Read More

UPDATED: Five Cooling Shelters to Open During Heatwave

Update July 28, 12:03 pm: Cooling shelters will remain open through at least Saturday morning as the National Weather Service predicts excessive heat in Portland until Saturday evening and possibly into Sunday. Friday and Saturday are expected to reach 100 degrees with relatively high temperatures at night. Approximately 170 people stayed at the overnight cooling shelters on Wednesday, according… → Read More

Five Cooling Shelters to Open During Heatwave

Four overnight and one daytime cooling shelters will open in Portland Tuesday at 2 pm amid an extended heatwave in Northwest Oregon this week. Following an excessive heat warning from the National Weather Service, Portland and Multnomah County officials announced emergency declarations on Sunday. Temperatures are expected to be in the upper 90s or higher all week, peaking at 102 degrees on… → Read More

Portland City Council Approves $107 Million in Green Energy Grants—Here’s Where the Money is Going

Portland City Council approved $107 million in clean energy grants Wednesday, the largest single investment in climate-related projects in the city’s history. The grants are funded through the Portland Clean Energy Fund (PCEF), a first-of-its-kind program that uses a surcharge on large retailers in the city to fund green energy projects that prioritize low-income Portlanders and communities of… → Read More

UPDATE: Portland Police Shoot One Person During a Traffic Stop

Update 5/8 8:55 am: Four Portland police officers and a driver exchanged gunfire during a traffic stop Friday night, according to the Portland Police Bureau (PPB). The driver is hospitalized with critical injuries and no officers were injured during the shooting. According to the police, officers pulled over a driver in the Roseway neighborhood around 9 pm due to multiple vehicle violations. PPB… → Read More

Digital Vaccine Card Now Available For All Oregonians

Oregonians can now download a unique QR code that proves their vaccine status. The optional digital vaccine verification tool, created by Oregon Health Authority (OHA), aims to eliminate the need for vaccinated Oregonians to provide both their vaccine card and photo ID to show their vaccination status and streamline the verification process for entertainment venues and restaurants that have a… → Read More

Masks Optional on TriMet and Streetcar Following New Federal Guidance

Masks are now optional on TriMet busses, MAX trains, and the Portland Streetcar following a change in federal guidance. On Monday, a federal judge in Florida struck down the national mask mandate for transportation spaces like airports, busses, and trains, calling it "unlawful" and violates the agency's rule-making procedure. In response, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA)… → Read More

Good Morning, News: Portland Home Buyers vs. Real Estate Investors, Librarian Safety, and a Seal Pup PSA

The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support! Gooood morning, Portland! Alright, that’s enough dilly dallying—onto the headlines! In local news: • It’s increasingly… → Read More

Three Severe Weather Shelters to Open as Portland Braces for More Snow

Multnomah County will open three severe weather shelters in Portland Tuesday night as overnight forecasts predict significant chances of snow in the metro area. The Salvation Army shelter in North Portland, Imago Dei shelter in Southeast Portland, and Sunrise Center in East Portland will open at 8 pm tonight and are expected to close at 8 am Wednesday. Pets are welcome at all three shelters and… → Read More

What Was Accomplished (and What Wasn't) in Oregon's 2022 Legislative Session

The Oregon Legislature's short sessions—held on even numbered years—are historically unusual. These month-long sessions are often used to fast-track uncontroversial policies or pass emergency budget packages to hold the state over for another year. Despite their swiftness, these sessions are not void of drama: The last time the state held a short session in 2020, Oregon Republicans made sure to… → Read More

Oregon to Lift Indoor Mask Mandate on March 12

Oregon officials will lift the state’s indoor mask mandate on March 12, Governor Kate Brown announced Monday. This is the second time the end date for the state’s mask mandate has been moved up as COVID-19 cases decrease dramatically in the state. The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) first announced in early February that the state’s indoor mask mandate would be lifted no later than March 31.… → Read More

TriMet Will Now Ban Riders Who Spit at Drivers

Spitting at a TriMet employee is now punishable with a lifetime ban on riding the TriMet system. TriMet’s board of directors unanimously approved the code change at a meeting Wednesday. TriMet officials say that no specific incident caused the code change, but rather the board took action in an effort to support bus operators who have faced an increase in attacks throughout the pandemic. “Most… → Read More

New Oregon Law Helps Protect Deaf and Hard of Hearing Drivers During Traffic Stops

Hard of hearing and deaf Oregonians now have an option to declare their hearing status on their drivers license and vehicle registration thanks to a new state law aiming to protect hard of hearing drivers during traffic stops. As of January 3, hard of hearing drivers can apply to add a note on their driving record and a small icon of an ear with a slash through it to their physical drivers… → Read More

UPDATED: County to Reopen Warming Shelters Friday Night

Update 12/31, 1:30 pm: Four emergency weather shelters will reopen Friday at 7 pm, Multnomah County officials announced Friday morning. The county originally shuttered the shelters Thursday as temperatures in Portland stayed above freezing all day. Freezing temperatures in the low 20s are expected Friday night, triggering the reopening of shelters. The Oregon Convention Center, East Portland… → Read More

Oregon Approves Pfizer Boosters for Teens 16 and Older

Oregon’s immunization advisory panel approved booster doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for people ages 16 and 17 Thursday. Healthcare providers and vaccine clinics are approved to administer shots to newly eligible teens who completed their original vaccine series at least six months ago effective immediately. The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup—a group of experts tasked with… → Read More

Booster Shots Expected to be Approved for Oregon Adults This Weekend

All adult Oregonians who received Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines at least six months ago will be eligible to receive a booster shot starting this weekend. The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup, Oregon’s immunization advisory board, is expected to approve expanded eligibility for booster shots at a Friday evening meeting. The regional board’s impending decision follows the… → Read More