REDMOND, OR -- A state transportation group has been working for a number of years to identify where government should prioritize its funding. The Governor’s Transportation Vision Panel - including Deschutes County Commissioner Tammy Baney - brought its preliminary findings to Redmond, Thursday. It was the fourth of 11 scheduled on a statewide tour, aimed at learning the specific transportation needs of each region.
Bill Braly serves on Redmond’s Bike/Ped Advisory Committee. He tells KBND News he likes that the state seems more willing to listen. "I think it’s great that the Governor’s office is reaching out. I think ODOT is listening much more than they used to in the old days. There's not much money, and there's even less in our future. But, I think, it's a chance for people on the east side of the mountain, particularly, to have a voice that we don’t usually have." He told the panel he’d like to see more awareness and funding for better connectivity between cities. "It’s basically not safe to ride between the various cities; both in terms of tourism, transportation and all those kinds of things. We think that would be a good world to live in."
Crook County Commissioner Seth Crawford was there to observe the process. "I think it’s important to get outside of Salem end hear what the people are really thinking about and what they need. We have people from the county and city here to ask for specific things, so I'm more here to just kind of take it all in."
Nearly every Central Oregon city had a representative at the meeting. The majority said eliminating bottlenecks and investing in transit service improvements should be top priorities. The panel is working on identifying where the state should focus transportation efforts in the next four to 30 years. When the listening tour is complete, they will present their findings to the Governor.