BEND, OR -- Another political newcomer seeks a seat on the Bend City Council. Andrew Davis was born and raised in Bend; he's not the Student & Campus Life Director for Central Oregon Community College.
He's focused on helping Bend overcome and avoid challenges while it's experiencing such rapid growth, "We've got to look for ways to be really strategic as we develop and I think planning farther into the future than the city has done is really critical. Bend was used to being able to react to problems and then fix them, and I think now, we have to make more conscious decisions." Davis says leadership can't manage today's level of growth as though it's similar to the pace of the 1980s, "We weren't growing as fast, we weren't as big to begin with, and that made it possible to say, 'Okay, what do we need to do in the next two years or five years?' Well, right now, we need to be figuring out, 'What do we need to be doing in the next 15 years?' and let's get those project aligned correctly so that we aren't doing work twice, so that we can have as close to zero waste in the scenario as possible." He tells KBND News, "We've changed so quickly from just a small town to a pretty moderately large sized city, and a lot of challenges came with that growth, and I just wanted to be able to jump in and see what we can do to make this a community that really works for everybody."
Davis says it's important to make sure the city uses tax dollars wisely, "First identifying operational inefficiencies and eliminating those, so that we can stretch the money that we already have farther." Davis earned his MBA with an emphasis on strategic planning. He says he wants to use that knowledge to help Bend, "I see an opportunity gap for a lot of people between the median household wages that are earned and the median household price in our community. I think there's just a big disparity there."
He faces Gena Goodman Campbell and Victor Johnson in the race for Bend City Council Position Five. They're all expected to take part in a Bend Chamber forum on October ninth. Click HERE for more information about all of the candidates running for local office.