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Former Bend councilor Chris Piper announces run for mayor

Chris Piper
Chris Piper
Chris Piper

(Update: Comments from Russell)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Chris Piper, a 17-year Bend resident appointed to a City Council vacancy after voters elected Councilor Sally Russell as the city's first elected mayor, announced late Wednesday he's running for her position.

Piper was appointed on a 4-2 vote in 2019 to fill the council seat, amid controversy. He then ran for a full four-year term in 2020, but finished second to Megan Perkins.

Russell told NewsChannel 21 by email Thursday that she's being asked if she'll seek a second term as mayor and expects to "make that announcement closer to June," when the filing period opens.

"It’s good to see people committed to our community who want to serve on the Bend City Council and as Bend’s mayor," she wrote. "I’ll be curious to see who else steps forward to lead Bend over the next several months."

"As the deadline to file for Bend City Council is usually early September, there’s lots of time for the candidates for each of the two council and mayoral seats to reveal themselves," the mayor added.

The nonpartisan positions will be on the November ballot, so there are no primary races for the council seats or mayor.

Here's Piper's news release announcing his mayoral run:

Chris Piper Announces Candidacy for Mayor of Bend, Oregon

Bend, Oregon – Former City Councilor, local businessman, and community volunteer, Chris Piper, announced today his candidacy for Mayor of Bend, Oregon.

Piper, a 17 year resident of Bend, is running for Mayor to promote growth through economic development, which is key to a strong, vibrant, and financially sound community; to ensure that Bend continues to provide high-quality services such as police, fire, public works, and sound sustainable infrastructure projects; and ensure transparent and open-minded City of Bend government and process; and to ensure we have a sound, compassionate, sustainable strategic plan that will manage and clean up our City’s houseless issue.

Piper believes Bend needs leadership, listening, and accountability and greater community engagement between our city’s elected officials, staff, local agencies, neighborhood associations, and the residents of Bend; providing each of us the chance to listen and learn from one another and unite our city. Bendites deserve this type of leadership and Piper promises to deliver this as Mayor.

“Our city is facing serious challenges; workforce shortages, increasing housing costs, hundreds of unhoused community members and a staggering number of small businesses on the brink of closing due to the pandemic. Solutions will require a collaborative leader who listens to understand the issue, who does not shy away from opposing views, someone who serves people – not party. Having worked with Chris over the past few years, I am confident that he is the leader we need.” – Tammy Baney, former Deschutes County Commissioner, and community leader.

Piper states, “Bend must adapt a community-minded and attainable agenda if we are to effectively manage this City’s inevitable growth; increased traffic congestion; public safety; affordable and workforce housing; infrastructure (water, utility, sewer, roads); and the monetary expenditures associated with each.” 

“Bend is approaching an impasse in making decisions that could lead to a more positive direction for our community. As your Mayor, our elected officials’ jobs will focus to ensure our community’s safety, promote a positive environment for families to live in, students to learn in, and business to grow in”, says Piper.

Piper promises to provide routine and relevant community engagement on performance to all Bendites. “Together, we might struggle on occasion, but I assure you, we will move consistently forward.”

KTVZ news sources

Comments

12 Comments

  1. Some people can’t take a hint huh? Pipers NOT been elected to our city council for both of the last TWO cycles, and yet somehow he thinks he should be in charge of the whole show instead
    ????
    Honestly this has the fingerprints of erstwhile PR “professional” Jeff Eager all over it- very eager to assuage those feelings of fear and loathing following his own failed mayoral service no doubt

    1. No doubt…. Jeff Eager is desperate to maintain relevance, his attempt to control the republican leadership by holding their access to funding and elections support is pathetic. Failed leadership recycled to maintain a sense of control that never existed

  2. Mr. Piper has emerged as the face of Jeff Eager’s Orwellian Humanity Coalition (or whatever the heck they are calling it). Their model is the 2020 election in Chico, California, during which–based on a homelessness hysteria campaign–a slate of extremist reactionaries took over city government, when everywhere else in America progressives were racking up victories.

    Eager has framed homelessness as the new wedge issue by which heartless extremist politicians can ooze into power. Despite endorsements from both the Source and Bulletin, Mr. Piper lost to Megan Perkins, who is turning out to be the most vibrant and effective member of the new Bend City Council. I would urge her to consider a rematch with Mr. Piper–this time in the race for mayor.

    On inquiry, his campaign in 2020 would not say if Mr. Piper was a Trump supporter.

    The irony here, of course, is this display of Mr. Piper’s disloyalty toward Mayor Sally Russell, who was his chief sponsor for the Jan. 2019 appointment to the vacant City Council position. Text messages at the time reveal Ms. Russell in behind the scenes discussions with members of Bend’s power elite, who were seeking to influence her decision. A then City Council member pleaded with her not to choose “that woman,’ a reference to the top contender, a highly qualified young BIPOC woman.

    1. “On inquiry, his campaign in 2020 would not say if Mr. Piper was a Trump supporter.”

      On a question like that, anything other than “No” is a “Yes”.

  3. Cut out the “houseless” and “unhoused” bs and you may have a chance, Chris. The majority of people, including the homeless, don’t use these terms. They are simply used to pander to a small subset of voters, while simultaneously turning off everyone else. The first candidate that comes out and says they will use every resource at their disposal to clean up and prevent the illegal street slums will get my vote.

  4. When you refer to people as being “issues” that need to be “managed” and “cleaned up”, then you already tossed compassion right out the window.

  5. Hopefully a non-woke alternative to what we have now. Encouraging not to see the words “equity” climate change or “affordable housing” in his statement. Hopefully he will concentrate on what is really the issues here in Bend; traffic flow, road maintenance, housing the homeless who will follow rules and kicking out the ones who are addicts and criminals, stop the clear cutting of trees to build homes (so developers can cash in on the hot housing market) ……lots to do !

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