pdxfence is a single-purpose website used to calculate and display the fines that the city of Portland has levied against the federal government for “The Fence.” More background information is in the index.html.
This work is copyright © 2020 Brian Enigma and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Finding a T-0
Part of making this counter accurate is knowing the exact date and time at which the cease-and-desist was issued. This gives us an orign time from which we can start accumulating fees. This was done with a bit of guesswork on my part. I first heard of the fines through a set of tweets from Commissioner Eudaly:
10:26 AM · Jul 28, 2020 On Thursday, I directed @PBOTinfo to enforce on the federal occupiers for erecting a fence in our public right of way. PBOT filed a cease and desist demand on behalf of the City—we have not received a response.
10:26 AM · Jul 28, 2020 We are assessing the maximum fine of $500 for every 15 minutes the fence obstructs our street, & we are investigating other legal remedies. Typically, we would send a maintenance crew or contractor to remove such an obstruction, but I will not send workers into harm's way.
10:26 AM · Jul 28, 2020 Yes, I am afraid to direct workers to do their job and enforce our laws against the federal government—I hope that gives everyone reading this pause.
As of yesterday, the federal government owes us $192,000 and counting. We intend to collect.
With a bit of math:
$192,000 / $500 dollars per 15-minues / 4 (15-minute chunks per hour) / 24 (hours in a day) you end up with 4 days of fines. But four days since when? “As of yesterday,” which is a fairly broad 24-hour period.
Another data point we have is a PBOT news release about the barrier covering the bike lane, which points to a cease and desist letter, dated July 23rd. But again, no specific time from which we can start counting our 15-minute increments.
Based on the above, I am arbitrarily picking noon on the 23rd as the origin time. If anyone has a more accurate and official origin time, please contact me at
I have since been directed to a posted notice in a Reddit post that points to T-0 being 2020-07-23 at 1:12PM.
Calculating The Fee
$500 per 15 minutes divides out to 56.666̅¢ per second. From there, it's just calculating the delta from T-0 until now and multiplying that by 56¢.
I welcome pull requests.
- @MisterSowers : Inspiration.
- Brian Enigma : Basic site design and coding.
- Christine Rose : Wordsmithing.