Portland Harbor Citizens Advisory Group

The Photo Above…

…is important to the members who make up the Portland Harbor Citizens Advisory Group.  Like the men who built the St. John’s Bridge to connect communities separated by the river, we build bridges too.  Our work bridges communication gaps existing between the technical society and the general public.  Our primary role is to attend all of the technical meetings so we can understand then communicate what is happening with the Willamette River cleanup.   It is our hope that our efforts inform and empower citizens to have meaningful conversations about the Willamette River. 

What is a CAG?

A Community Advisory Group (CAG) is made up of representatives of diverse community interests. Its purpose is to provide a public forum for community members to present and discuss their needs and concerns related to the Superfund decision-making process. A CAG can assist EPA in making better decisions on how to clean up a site. It offers EPA a unique opportunity to hear-and seriously consider-community preferences for site cleanup and remediation. However, the existence of a CAG does not eliminate the need for the Agency to keep the community informed about plans and decisions throughout the Superfund process.

Once a contaminated site officially becomes a Superfund site, the EPA provides a community involvement coordinator but no direct funding unless you apply for the TAG Grant.

The TAG grant is specifically for the CAG to hire a technical consultant(s) and not much more.

 The group’s primary role is to stay current with Superfund issues and procedures, clearly understand and share the technical information with the general public community. 

Essentially the Portland Harbor CAG connects:

  • Community
  • City of Portland, Bureau of Environmental Services
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • Multnomah County in understanding the Superfund process.
  • Oregon Dept. of Environmental Quality,
  • Oregon Health Authority
  • Oregon, State Dept. of Lands
  • River-businesses
  • State of Oregon, Governor’s Office

PHCAG Organization

Officer Roles:

Chair: responsible for the overall functioning of the PHCAG. Develop meeting agenda. Arrange for speakers and/or presentations. Conduct meetings.

Vice-Chair: shares duties of the Chair for the overall functioning of the PHCAG.

Secretary: responsible for ensuring that PHCAG activities are adequately recorded. Record the names of all attendees at PHCAG meetings. Record the deliberations, actions and results of any votes taken in the minutes of each meeting. Provide copies of meeting minutes and reports.

Treasurer: responsible for receiving and disbursing of all funds of the PHCAG. As such, the treasurer is responsible for retaining in an orderly manner all financial records for the PHCAG including monthly bank statements, monthly treasurer’s reports, quarterly or annual balance sheets or income statements, and all receipts for expenditures. The treasurer is also responsible for supplying financial reports and payment requests that may be needed as requirements of grant awards received by PHCAG.

Partner Organizations

The Portland Harbor Community Advisory Group is one part of a network of organizations working to cleanup the Portland Harbor. Depending on your focus of interest, you may want to contact these organizations:

Willamette Riverkeeper

North Willamette Watershed Council

Northwest Toxic Community Coalition

Portland Harbor Community Coalition

Portland Audubon

Yakama Nation

The Northwest Toxic Communities Coalition is comprised of non-profit groups from EPA Region 10 areas which address local hazardous substances and environmental health issues. The coalition is an umbrella organization that serves as a conduit of 
relevant information and resources to its members. It is a collection of Superfund groups but many others too who care about the environment, its health and future.



CAG Member Representation CAG Title
Jackie Calder University Park Neighborhood Chair
Doug Larson Cathedral Park Neighborhood Treasurer
Michael Pouncil PHCAG River Discussing Coordinator
Bob Sallinger Audubon Society Conservation Director
Todd Trigsted At-Large Website Mgr.
Kristin Yount Student Media
Travis Williams WRK Partner
Cassie Cohen PHCC Partner
Tom Chisolm At-Large
Micah Meskel Audubon
Bill Egan OB & PF / Sport fishing
Robin Plance St. Johns Neighborhood
Jim Robison At-Large

Stay Informed

The Willamette River is your river.

PHCAG will send updates about the cleanup
progress, upcoming meetings and 
community events.