The Friendly Area Neighbors general meeting last April 19, was focused on bringing in local candidates and learning more about the men and women Eugene residents will be voting for. The Spring meeting started with Joann Earnst, who was the current EWEB Ward, talking about potential EWEB price increases and a new green power program. Earnst then concluded with a short discussion on a new project to renovate the Mckenzie River Dam over the next 5-6 years.
The meeting then turned to local candidates, as the neighbors gave each candidate 5-10 minutes to talk about him or herself, and then an extra 10 minutes of question and answer sessions. The first office that was represented was for Joann Earnst’s job as the EWEB 8th Ward, which deals directly with EWEB to make it easy for the neighborhood to get answers to any questions and remedy any problems quickly. The two candidates were Steve Mital and Will Shaver, who both live in the Friendly Neighborhood and have had backgrounds in sustainability.
The next office represented was for Lane County Commissioner, and featured the candidates Pete Sorenson and Andy Stahl. The County Commissioners are a panel of five people who legislate and administer County government and local programs. The five seats are for each of the five areas of Lane County: W. Lane, S. Eugene, N. Eugene, Springfield, and E. Lane.
The final candidate forum was for the position of mayor of Eugene. The candidates at the meeting were Kitty Piercy, Kevin Prociw and Jon Walrod. The mayor of Eugene is the head of the city’s politics, as well as the chairperson for the 8-person city council. As chairperson, the mayor presides over every meeting but only votes in the case of a tie.
After listening to each candidate talk, and after asking many questions, the Friendly Neighborhood meeting drew to a close and the candidates left to allow the neighbors to finish the meeting. A few final announcements were made including a thank-you to the Friendly Market for donating snacks to the neighborhood meetings for the last 10 years, and announcing an Earth Day work party from 10-1 at the Washington City Park.
The next Friendly Area Neighbors general meeting will be held Sunday, July 22, which will take place jointly with neighborhood’s annual picnic at Washington Park. The Friendly Area Neighbors Executive Board also meets every second Monday of every month from 7-9 p.m. at the Washington Park Cottage at 2025 Washington St. The next meeting will be on June 11th.