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Sides Notes 6/22-6/29 

Bend Livability is on many minds.

Bend Livability is on many minds.

Popular personal-finance website WalletHub recently released its 2016 Car Insurance & Credit Scores Report, shining a light on a controversial pricing policy among the automotive insurance industry: the direct use of an individual's credit score in determining policy costs.

In Oregon, WalletHub found a 68 percent fluctuation in premiums based on credit. Data also show that Oregonians who have no credit pay on average 53 percent more for insurance than people who have good credit.

To read the full report and search by state, visit wallethub.com.

Bend Economic Development Advisory Board Opening

The City of Bend is searching to fill two volunteer positions on the Bend Economic Advisory Board (BEDAB). This is a three-year appointment to advise the City Council on matters concerning economic development, guide the City's marketing outreach to businesses, and provide entrepreneurial support among community resources.

Currently the board is looking to increase professional diversity among members, specifically seeking representatives from high tech, aviation, biotech and outdoor recreation and equipment industries. Although these are subject areas that they are targeting, the City encourages all those who think they would be able to contribute to apply.

Applications close at 8am, Aug. 1.

To apply, contact the City of Bend at 541-388-5505 or visit bendoregon.gov/committees.

Please Don't Release Your Pet Turtles Into the Wild

Yes, this is an actual request from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW). Blame this on whoever abandoned an invasive snapping turtle in Roseburg, which turned up in the Yancalla Water Treatment Plant.

Turtles can live a long time, giving them ample opportunity to mess with our native Western Painted and Western Pond turtle populations. The invasive snapping turtle species cannot only outcompete its local rivals for food, it lays more eggs than the natives.

No reports yet on whether it's still safe to flush Timmy's goldfish.

Report Shows Law Officers Killed on Duty Down in 2015

According to recently released preliminary statistics from the FBI, 41 law enforcement agents were killed in the line of duty in 2015, a 20 percent decrease from the 51 officer fatalities reported in 2014. Another 45 officers perished from line-of-duty accidents, the same number as last year.

Of the 41 law enforcement deaths, 38 involved a use of a firearm. Handguns were cited in 29 incidents; rifles were named in seven cases; and one incident involved a shotgun. Three officers were killed by vehicles.

Complete details can be found in the Uniform Crime Reporting Program's publication, "Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted, 2015," which will be available online at fbi.gov this fall.

Bend Livability Project Exceeds Expectations

Bend is growing, and quickly. Some say too much, too soon and most want a say in the direction of changes, but don't know where to start or how to go about it. For those who don't know: The Bend Livability Project is an optimal place to get a foot in the door, offering knowledge and participation through workshops, discussions, and conferences.

More than 3,500 Bendites engaged in Bend Livability Project's June 2-5 Livability Conference, focusing on transportation, housing, art, funding and neighborhood livability. The four-day event included workshops and panel discussions exploring topics such as Affordable Housing, Creating Cooperation Not Conflict (between businesses and neighborhoods), and Tangible Tools for Shaping City Policy (how neighborhoods can influence the future of their community). The Tower Theatre screened "The Human Scale" by Andreas M. Dalsgaard, which examines architecture in modern society as it is used to better its inhabitants: what works, what doesn't, and how things could be changed for better or worse. Attendees also had an opportunity to experience a "Disability for a Day," to find out what it might be like for the 20 percent of Central Oregonians living with a disability.

Participants also worked on current and future projects, including a permanent kit created specifically for maintaining bike and pedestrian lanes and crossings, a mural designed by local teens from Basecamp Studio and painted by the community, and the creation of the Eastside Coalition, a citizen's group that focuses on the often overlooked East side of Bend.

Bend Livability Project seeks to educate, empower and engage the Bend community to harness and shape dramatic growth through innovative strategies. Learn more at bendlivability.org.

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