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Johnson City wants say on Clackamas River Water board

County's tiniest city gets its 15 minutes of fame on ballot


by: PHOTO BY: RAYMOND RENDLEMAN - After Johnson City Mayor Kay Mordock and her husband, Bill, volunteered to keep the city's park clean for 12 years, the City Council recently decided to rename it Mordock Park.Johnson City, Clackamas County’s smallest city with a population 573, often is forgotten, but its first appearance in the county’s special election Voters’ Pamphlet puts it back on the map.

Mayor Kay Mordock says the City Council supports the measure to incorporate into Clackamas River Water District boundaries to ensure continued water supply from CRW and to allow citizens to vote in CRW elections.

“One of the benefits of this measure passing is that we would have a voice on the board,” Mordock said.

Brian Johnson, whose family owns Johnson Mobile Estates, remembered his frustration when CRW board members Grafton Sterling and Patricia Holloway, the latter who was recalled in March, tried to block the annual sale of about $12,000 in water to his property that is leased to city residents. His grandfather, Delbert Johnson, owned the property in 1970, when the city was incorporated.

“I could only go to CRW board meetings as a concerned ratepayer,” Johnson said.

Although three county-appointed CRW board members appear on this month’s ballot, Johnson City residents won’t get to vote until the next election. Owners Brian and Kevin Johnson live in Gladstone, so they still would not be eligible for the vote if the measure passes.

Meanwhile, Mordock is looking forward to her city getting back out of the limelight. A project administrator for the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance in Portland by day, she and her husband, Bill, who was on the Planning Commission for eight years, continue to volunteer for the city. After they volunteered to keep the city’s park clean for 12 years, the City Council recently decided to rename it Mordock Park. On the first Saturday in August, the city will hold its annual "Picnic in the Park" there.

“It’s a beautiful area, and people care about each other here. The city works very closely with the landowners to do Operation Santa, citywide yard sales, and Friday morning senior meetings right here in City Hall (16121 S.E. 81st Ave.), where we also have a library that’s on the honor system,” Mordock said.



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