ACTION ALERTS: Big Agenda for Bend City Council This Wednesday

Support Funding the Core Area Plan

The vision for a vibrant, sustainable mixed-use neighborhood in the Bend Central District with safe east & west connections depends on the Core Area Plan to be funded through Tax Increment Financing (TIF). On August 5th, Bend City Council will vote to create an urban renewal area so that they may use TIF to provide funding for projects including transportation and affordable housing.

Tell the City why you support the Core Area TIF Plan! Email Matt Stuart, City of Bend Urban Renewal Manager, at . Suggested talking points can be found here from Central Oregon Landwatch.

Making Investments in Bend’s Transportation System:
Tell the Council to Let Voters Decide in November

Last Spring, Bend was poised to vote on a bond measure to invest $190 million in their transportation system.  But in the chaos of the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, the City Council decided to postpone the vote and pulled the measure from the May ballot.

Now, the Council is actively considering placing the bond measure before voters on this November’s ballot.  It’s the same package of needed investments in improving safety, traffic flow, walking, biking, and transit, and the same amount of investment, $190 million, as the original proposal from last winter.  The bond measure reflects the hard work that The Environmental Center and many others have put into drafting Bend’s new transportation system plan—but we can’t make that plan a reality without additional funds.  We simply have too much catch up work to do, especially on safety improvements and walking and biking infrastructure.

That’s why The Environmental Center supports placing the ballot measure before voters in November.  We know that despite the pandemic, we still need to make these investments—they are essential to preserving and enhancing quality of life and sustainability as we continue to grow.

We are also sensitive to today’s challenging economy.  So we are joining with the Chamber of Commerce and others in asking the Council to ensure that property owners will not see an increase in their taxes until fall of 2022. That will give our economy time to recover and unemployment time to improve.

This Wednesday, the Council will decide whether to place the ballot measure before Bend’s voters.

If you agree with us that Bend needs these investments and that voters should be able to decide if now is the right time, please let the Bend City Council know ASAP.