BEND, OR -- Four candidates for Bend City Council debated the issues at a forum hosted by the Chamber of Commerce, Tuesday night.
Though she was unable to attend, Sarah McCormick taped an opening statement where she said she's running for Position Six because she's worried about Bend's safety and affordability, "To be honest, I'm most worried about the incumbent in our race because she is so concerned with national, hot button political issues, that she walks out on City Council meetings. I will never walk out on the City of Bend." Barb Campbell, also running for Position Six, is the only incumbent in the race. She says the City Council needs her experience, "Since I'm the incumbent up here: I moved to town in 1981. I started my business nine years ago; I first ran for Council 6 years ago, and I was elected four years ago, when my opponent moved to town." She says she views her job a little like a gardener, "For four years, I've been working so hard on this little garden; and the hardest thing to get re-elected to be gardener again is that so much of the work is little seeds that you can't even see are there yet. And then you can't see the weeds that have already been pulled and thrown away." Ron 'Rondo' Boozell, the third Position Six candidate, did not take part in the event; he is currently incarcerated at the Deschutes County Jail.
Position Five candidates were asked about dredging Mirror Pond. Andrew Davis told the crowd, "Dredging Mirror Pond for me, is a partnership between several entities and the City is one of them. I think Parks and Rec also has a piece to play in that equation, and I also think the homeowners along that stretch of river have some obligation." Gena Goodman-Campbell disagrees, "I think it's important to acknowledge that the land underneath Mirror Pond is privately owned, and it falls to those private land owners to fund the dredging, or decide how they're going to gather the funding for that."
The third candidate for Position Five, musician and preschool teacher Victor Johnson, says the state needs to do more to help people, "Affordable housing is maybe one of the biggest priorities, creating more green space and affirmative solutions to transportation. We need more quality childcare and the state could really help with that."