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Politics & Government

Corvallis Mayor Delivers State Of The City

Chris Lehman

Corvallis is in good shape, but not without its challenges. That was the message Wednesday from Mayor Biff Traber during his annual State of the City address.

Traber said one of his goals for his second term is to ensure predictable funding for city services, including emergency response, parks, and public transit. That’s on track, he said, thanks in part to a pair of ballot measures approved by voters last year.

“We actually have reason to celebrate," said Traber. "We’ve got ourselves on a stable set of funding over a number of years. I appreciate the support from the voters who passed this.”

But Traber said a number of challenges remain: For instance, affordable housing continues to be in short supply. The mayor said he supports efforts to change zoning in some areas in order to allow high-density housing.

"Housing is going to continue to be a focus of mine," he said. "We don't want to find ourselves in the position of simply building market-rate housing, and not deal with the problem we have with the percentage of our population that is housing-burdened."

Credit Chris Lehman / KLCC
Downtown Corvallis

Traber also said he wants the city to increase the urgency with which it attempts to both mitigate and prepare for climate change. Corvallis needs to "reduce its greenhouse gas emissions," but also adapt to "what's going to occur no matter what we do," he said.

The mayor opened his remarks by paying tribute to former Corvallis City Council member Joel Hirsch, who died in a traffic crash on Tuesday evening.

The State of the City address was sponsored by the Corvallis Chamber of Commerce.

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