What's all that sludge in the shallow water that is Mirror Pond?
Who should clean up that stuff?
What about making the pond into a free-flowing river instead?
Who even owns the pond, anyway?
If these questions sound to you like a Bend-y version of Groundhog Day, you're not alone. Bend has dredged Mirror Pond before, many years ago, and some say that it's time to do that again. Still, others say that this is an ideal time to talk again about whether the impoundment that is Mirror Pond should even be a pond in the first place, since a free-flowing river would be better for wildlife. The question of removing the dam is pretty much off the table for now, unless Pacificorp decides to blow it up or sell it—but in the ongoing public debate that is Mirror Pond dredging, it appears some entities are starting to make progress.
Bend Park and Recreation District adopted a resolution this summer, agreeing to put $300,000 toward dredging. The Bend City Council has also committed to pay for 50% of the project, or no more than $3 million. Some private funds are forthcoming, but that still leaves close to half of the projected $6.7 million price tag in the balance—meaning the issue is far from behind us.
Best Ongoing Public Debate? Maybe more like Best Murky Issue That Never Gets Sunk...