MADRAS, OR -- The Mayor of Madras says if all goes as planned in November, he’ll trade places with a City Councilor in 2019. Mayor Royce Embanks tells KBND News, "I ran twice and, unopposed, was re-elected. The city can have a change; they don’t need a Mayor for life." That realization led to an idea and a conversation.
City Councilor Richard Ladeby says he decided to run for the top job after talking with Embanks, "He asked me if I’d be interested in running for Mayor. I gave it some thought and I talked to the wife and I said, ‘well, I’ve already done the Planning Commission and I’ve done City Council for what will be eight years when I get done.’ And, I said, ‘it’d be fun to give it a shot and see how I could do."
Ladeby says his top priority is increasing civic involvement, especially at Council meetings, "For our visitors’ comments, we very seldom have anybody coming in. So, I want to get out in the community to our residents and to our businesses and encourage them to come talk to us." He adds, "I think they pay attention when we’re proposing some type of tax hike or an increase on something. The most engagement we’ve had was when we had the marijuana initiative; and then we had a packed house for every Council meeting. I’d like it to see it for any concerns or issues – to come in and voice their opinion." He says housing needs and bringing new businesses to Madras are also important issues.
Ladeby is a retired food services manager at Deer Ridge Prison and has lived in Madras for 12 years. He loves his city and appreciates how well the current City Council works together. He admits they have their differences, but believes they're doing a good job moving the city forward. If the election continues on the same course, the general make-up of the Council won't change. Mayor Embanks says he's running for Ladeby's Council seat, and two other Councilors are running for re-election unopposed. The candidate filling deadline for the November election is this Tuesday, August 28.