Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Whatcha Doing, Candidate? Scott Ramsay for City Council Pos. 7

Posted By on Tue, Sep 23, 2014 at 12:16 PM

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Source Weekly: What is your age, occupation and political affiliation?
Scott Ramsay: I am 48 years young. I am a partner/owner in our 20 year-old family business—Sun Mountain Fun Center. I am a Libertarian: fiscally conservative and socially moderate.

SW: How long have you lived in Bend?
SR: I have lived in Bend for 12 years after growing up visiting year-round, all my life, from Springfield, Oregon, where I grew up.

SW: Why do you want to be a City Councilor?
SR: I want to apply the experience I have gained over the past four years as a Councilor to the challenges facing the next four years as we grow, evolve, and change as a community. I have a practical working knowledge of the issues at hand and would like to continue to execute a well-rounded plan to carry us into the next phase of our evolution from a small town to a thriving small city.

SW: How many City Council meetings have you attended in the past year?
SR: I have attended every one of them in the past year. I have only missed 2 meetings (that I can recall) in my four-year term as a City Councilor.

SW: Have you previously held a public office or participated on a civic committee?
SR: I am a current City Councilor. Along with my Council duties I am also a board member for EDCO (Economic Development for Central Oregon), a board member for BEDAB (Bend Economic Development Advisory Board), a committee member for the Local Public Safety Advisory Committee, a member of COBAAC (City of Bend Accessibility Advisory Committee), an advisor on the Tower Theater Advisory Committee, and am a past VP of the BendFilm Festival Board. I was also Director of Selections for the BendFilm Festival for six years.

SW: Name three things you hope you change if elected.
SR: 1) Complete the UGB expansion remand within the timeline set by City Council. 2) Continue and expand our efforts to attract and support companies in our community that provide living-wage jobs. An environment and culture where business can thrive and grow is essential to the sustainability of our city and region. 3) Maintain and execute a sound plan for growth, including infrastructure upgrades & improvements, affordable housing needs, public safety, transportation, and the challenges resulting from the addition of a 4-year university in our city limits.

SW: What’s your take on Mirror Pond, the UGB and vacation rentals?
SR: Mirror Pond is an iconic element in Bend’s landscape and identity. I support any option that keeps Mirror Pond with a water level that resembles what we have today. I am flexible on the details that get us to that point. Whether we keep a dam, in substantially the form it exists in today, would depend on the cost to the community and taxpayers when compared to other options presented, including dam removal, repair, reconstruction of the habitat, long-term maintenance, or replacement with other elements, and who would be responsible for the financial impact of any or all of these options. Ultimately I would prefer a mixed-use solution that maintains similar water levels in the pond, combined with a lower section of free-flowing water over rock obstructions, but I am not yet convinced we can get there with fiscal sense applied. My hope would be to form a diverse shared-cost partnership with Bend Park and Recreation, Pacific Power, private funds & the City of Bend.

Vacation rental policy is currently under review. An amended policy will most likely be crafted by the end of this year. We must find a balance between the rights of the property owner and their use of the property, and the health of a harmonious neighborhood. There should be recourse against those that abuse this use and there should also be a registration process so that the City of Bend can monitor the quantity and location of vacation rentals.

SW: Why are you the best person for the job?
SR: I am experienced, honest, and open-minded. I am a level-headed decision maker and I am fiscally conservative, giving me the background needed to ensure city spending is applied with oversight. I have a great working relationship with City Staff and have deep involvement in the community, giving me perspective and feedback from a variety of demographics. I am part of the ownership of a successful 20 year old local family business that provides jobs for 30+ students and families, giving me an understanding of the challenges facing families in our community and the livability as we grow.

SW: What’s the best and worst thing about Bend?
SR: The best thing about Bend is the quality of life. We constantly make top-ten lists across the nation because we have an amazing variety of recreation, entertainment, dining, lodging, arts, and activities, usually not provided in a city our size. The worst thing about Bend is when people relocate to our community and then expect it not to change or grow, demanding regulation and restrictions that mirror the regions from which they moved.

SW: What’s your favorite band/musician?
SR: The Smiths are way up on the list, although I am a huge music fan with way too many favorites to list.

SW: What "Simpsons" character do you most identify with?
SR: I grew up in Springfield, Oregon! I have a bit of all of them in my soul…

Scott Ramsay is running against Wabi Sabi owner Barb Campbell.
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