Estacada Mayor Austin hosts 'City Hall Day' at library

Estacada Mayor Bob Austin welcomed city councilors and mayors from four area cities to a City Hall Day forum last week with candidates for Oregon House District 51 and Senate District 26 at Estacada Public Library.

The League of Oregon Cities-sponsored event allowed local officials to talk one-on-one about issues that affect citizens and businesses in their communities.

Rep. Linda Flores (R-Clackamas), house candidate Ryan Olds (D-Clackamas), Sen. Rick Metsger (D-Mt. Hood) and senate candidate Carol York (R-Hood River) discussed issues about transportation, urban renewal, urban growth boundaries and government accountability, among other things.

The cities represented included Estacada, Sandy, Damascus and King City.

Sandy Mayor Linda Malone talked about state urban growth requirements that are forcing Metro to expand east into Clackamas County nurseries rather than farmland to the west of the metro area. She said it is important for cities outside of the urban growth boundary, such as Sandy and Estacada, to exercise 'self protection.'

City officials also expressed concern about the negative perception the public has of all government officials, noting that if the public doesn't like, or trust, federal and state officials, it affects the way they view local politicians.

Metsger acknowledged the concern, saying that politicians always have a low approval rating, but officials must strive to do their best.

Flores added that Oregon citizens will likely see more accountability coming soon as to what types of expense reports will be required by state officials.

Malone added election reform to the conversation, saying, 'It's disgusting to see people spending $1 million on an election.'

Olds, who has spent less than $5,000 campaigning, agreed.

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