Tanya Lima’s recent letter to the editor demonstrates the level of misinformation that is being circulated in Portland by a small special-interest political group masquerading as a social welfare nonprofit.

In her letter, Lima repeats the false claim that Councilor Jill Duson has attempted in some way to suppress affordable housing in the city. This is absolutely untrue.

The July 24 vote that Lima references was about whether or not to refer the issue of inclusionary zoning to the council’s Housing Committee, which Duson chairs. The problem with the referral was that the inclusionary zoning discussion has already involved the Housing Committee. It has been on the committee’s work plan since January 2016, and the committee and city staff have been working for months to assemble the necessary information to fully discuss the issue this fall.

The referral to the committee was completely unnecessary. That is why Councilor Duson, Councilor Brian Batson and I all voted against the referral.

The councilors who voted in favor of the referral also voiced concern that the referral was unnecessary and that it was nothing more than one person’s “attempt to claim (what Councilor Justin Costa called) ‘public-facing credit’ for a topic that was already on the council’s radar” (“More tensions surface between Portland mayor, councilors,” July 24).

Councilor Duson was instrumental in passing the city’s current inclusionary zoning ordinance, and she is a strong advocate for more affordable housing in the city. The only thing she voted against was political theater – something that could definitely stand to be quashed in Portland.

Belinda Ray

District 1 city councilor; East Bayside resident