The Bend Chamber has not held an "official position" on what may be the most controversial local issue- the proposed 68 million dollar drinking water project. But now, the chamber says they are hiring a neutral third party expert to evaluate the project and then give the chamber board his opinion. Chamber President Tim Casey told the city council during its meeting last night/wed. night that the chamber would move forward with this plan.
“i thnk it's imperative that we do this- the city has their experts- the opponents have their experts-...we'll have someone come in - who's not associated with the city at all and give their honest opinion."
Casey says the Chamber had started moving in this direction a year ago - but when the council voted to move forward with the pipeline they thought it wouldn't be useful.
He says now that the project is stalled again and the debate continues - they want to get another opinion from a neutral expert.