Our community is facing a serious issue with the gap between median household income and median household price. We need strategic thinkers that can work with stakeholders to find solutions for building a variety of housing options including town homes, duplexes, apartments, and single family homes at price points that work for a variety of income earners.
I work with college students who struggle with this gap almost daily. Certainly, city government cannot fix the problem on its own, but it can and must avoid making things worse. The housing problem is largely a supply and demand issue - the city needs to make it easier to build more housing units.
Bend needs to attract industries that pay higher wages to the many talented individuals living in Bend who are currently underemployed.
It is currently difficult to add new jobs in Bend because we don't have enough developable land. The city must work to provide more supply of land suitable to address this issue.
For years our city has struggled with long range strategic planning - and as great as Bend is, we cannot continue to allow it to grow organically any longer. With the population boom in the early 2000’s, we transitioned from a small community that could react to issues as they arose - to a moderately large size city that has a responsibility to look more than five years into the future when making conscious decisions about growth, infrastructure, and economic development.