Portland pho restaurant owner gears up to sue city after forced closure

Portland pho restaurant owner gears up to sue city after forced closurePortland pho restaurant owner gears up to sue city after forced closure
via KPTV FOX 12 Oregon, KGW News
Carl Samson
April 12, 2024
Pho Gabo owner Eddie Dong is reportedly planning to sue the City of Portland in Oregon for civil rights violations after the forced closure of one of his outlets due to enforcement of the city’s odor code.
Key points:
  • Dong has filed a tort claim, notifying recipients of a potential lawsuit, according to reports.
  • The Vietnamese restaurant owner reportedly alleges “discriminatory enforcement” of the code and is seeking both “economic and non-economic damages.”
  • Portland City Commissioner Carmen Rubio previously announced a review and possible revision of the code.
The details:
  • Pho Gabo’s Roseway location closed on Feb. 3 after a series of complaints from an anonymous neighbor. Despite Dong’s efforts to mitigate the issue, mounting costs and fines forced him to shut down the business.
  • Dong’s tort claim is not a suit in itself, but it notifies recipients of possible litigation. In it, he accuses the city of violating his civil rights under the U.S. and Oregon constitutions by selectively enforcing odor codes against his restaurant.
  • Dong reportedly faces significant financial strain after defaulting on his lease and incurring hefty fines. The enforcement also led to reputational harm, emotional distress and the loss of a community centered around the restaurant, his tort alleges.
  • Rubio has suspended odor complaint inspections against restaurants. Subsequently, she directed the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability to begin the process of updating regulations related to odor complaints.
  • While Dong’s lawyers are open to discussing a resolution with the city, they are prepared to look into litigation if these talks do not satisfy his concerns.
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