I have a strange issue. I can create any other type of site collection EXCEPT a collaboration Portal. Even the Publishing Portal works.
I get an error that just states that I need to contact the System Administrator. Unfortunately that's me.
The only thing that changed recently was that I could not get into the SSP (I got an error when trying to get to the site) and the only way to fix it was to restore a previous version of the web.config file.