The pilot project aims to enhance public safety in downtown Portland, according to officials.
“This collaborative effort between agencies will focus on reducing criminal activity through high-visibility uniformed police presence and enforcement activities,” PPB said in a press release.
It is not yet clear how many state troopers will help or for how long, though officials told KOIN 6 it will depend on their staffing.
David Baer, a spokesperson for the Central Neighborhood Response Team, said fentanyl is a major concern, but they also help in other investigations.
“We’re also looking for stolen cars that are out in the area,” Baer said. “We’re looking for no-plated vehicles. We’re looking for wanted persons from burglaries and robberies, you know, major crimes and homicide. They have people they’re looking for that they’re on our list.”
However, the pilot project’s announcement on Friday comes just over a week after Oregon Gov. Tina Kotek announced OSP’s impending involvement in “new fentanyl strategic enforcement and disruption strategies” across the state during a meeting for the Portland Central City Task Force.
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler sent a statement to KOIN 6 regarding the bike squad, saying:
“I greatly appreciate the increased collaboration with Gov. Kotek and OSP as we continue working to implement creative solutions to our public safety issues. It is more clear than ever that our community is strengthened through partnership and cooperation, and this is a great representation of how we can work together to meet the needs of our community.”
This is a developing story. Stay with KOIN 6 for more updates.