(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.
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.”