Development Code Changes go to City Council, Public Input Needed
The Bend Planning Commission met on July 26 to vote on recommendations to City Council regarding Development Code changes to support HB2001. While HB2001 requires allowing duplexes, triplexes, and quadplexes on any single family lot, the draft changes go beyond those requirements, such as allowing increased building height and reducing parking requirements. Additionally, one unit on each lot of these denser developments could be a short term rental, which reduces the new housing being made available.
The State of Oregon has provided grant money and given Bend until June of 2022 to have public meetings, but Bend has only had one meeting, and only about 10 residents had questions answered. Bend has not requested grant money for public meetings and City Staff wants the Council to push this through and make these changes nearly a year before the actual State deadline.
You can listen to testimony by going to this recording of the Planning Commission hearing. Skip forward to 1:39:20, public testimony ends at 2:04:00. You can then listen to how the Planning Commission discussed the proposed code changes and how they voted. Despite the fact that the majority of the testimony asked for more public engagement, the vote was unanimous to recommend that City Council move forward on all of the changes with no further public engagement.
Important dates on the next steps with this issue: The Council Work Session on the draft code changes (with no public comment) is Wednesday September 1. The Council Public Hearing (public comment allowed) is Thursday September 15. The final vote (likely with no public comment) will be October 6. Any code changes would take affect 30 days after that.
Contact the Council with your thoughts about the HB2001 related Development Code changes before September 15. (If you need more information to help gather your thoughts, ourbendhousingcode.com may be helpful.) You can email all the City Councilors at once here. However, individual emails work better as do phone calls. The earlier you reach out, the more likely your comments will be heard. Be sure to reference HB2001 changes or project number PLTEXT20210421. Below is contact information for each Councilor:
- Sally Russell, Mayor: email or call 541-480-8141
- Gena Goodman Campbell, Mayor Pro-Tem: email or call 541-749-0638
- Anthony Broadman, Councilor: email or call 541-749-7519
- Barb Campbell, Councilor (and rep to SCNA): email or call 541-749-7518
- Melanie Kebler, Councilor: email or call 971-266-0923
- Megan Perkins, Councilor: email or call 541-749-7619
- Rita Schenkelberg, Councilor: email or call 541-749-0993
Please also consider commenting at the City Council Public Hearing on September 15 at 7pm. Go to the City Council Meeting webpage. Once the agenda is posted there (a few days before the meeting), you can click on it to learn how to comment during the hearing.