The “illegally” put in concrete and metallic boundaries “are both unpermitted and represent a hazard to the traveling public,” mentioned a letter despatched with a cease-and-desist order to a federal official Thursday. Amongst different issues, they block a motorcycle lane, based on the document, revealed on-line by Willamette Week.
“Unidentified agents of the federal government have placed unpermitted fencing and jersey barriers in the city’s right-of-way outside of the Hatfield Federal Courthouse,” the letter states. “The fencing and barriers in the right-of-way create a hazard for Portlanders by blocking the bike lane on SW Main, which is the premiere bike facility into downtown Portland.”
Failure to take away the fencing would violate metropolis code and administrative guidelines, “and will be subject to fines and potential legal action,” mentioned the letter.
A spokesperson for the U.S. Common Providers Administration, which obtained the letter from Portland’s transportation head and its chief deputy metropolis lawyer, didn’t instantly reply to Fox Information’ request searching for remark.
The fencing was erected Wednesday to guard the courthouse in downtown Portland, based on Willamette Week. But it surely has since turn into a spotlight of protesters’ consideration after almost two months of demonstrations, which at occasions have devolved into riots.
Since its installment, demonstrators have tried to tear it down, throwing fireworks over the perimeter. In at the very least one occasion, they lit a big hearth between the barrier and the courthouse, based on social media and studies.
Greater than 2,000 folks took to the streets Thursday night time into Friday morning.
The protests started in Could after the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis whereas he was in police custody, and reportedly flared after President Trump despatched federal brokers regardless of town’s opposition.
Trump defended the federal government’s resolution to take motion in Portland on Thursday night time throughout an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity, saying, “We had to do it.”
“They’re anarchists,” Trump mentioned. “That is even, that is a stage that folks have not seen, however they’re anarchists.”
In keeping with Oregon Public Broadcasting, the fencing price taxpayers greater than $208,000.
The Related Press contributed to this report.