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I am an Oregon planner. Yes, I repeat: I am an Oregon planner. Despite what you hear about Measure 37, we’re still here. The sky fell and we’re still around picking up the pieces. Life’s never been better.

Years ago, some of us said it was time to go out to the public, statewide, and ask people from Portland to Lakeview, from Brookings to Joseph, what they would like Oregon to become in the 21st century. Just as the state requires cities to periodically review and update their plans, we wanted the state to do the same. Well, we were a minority; most politicians, lobbyists and planners were comfortable doing business as usual; they felt that a conducting such a statewide vision would be like opening Pandora’s box. Then came Measure 37 ...

Now we are engaged in a statewide dialogue: "The Big Look" (see story, p. 6). Planning and property rights will prevail, together, because you can’t have one without the other. Without property rights, citizens have few reasons to engage in planning, and without sound planning, property owners and businesses lack any predictability or assurance that their investments will be protected. Planners help government protect public and private investments. The best planners find ways to accomplish both in ways that sustain our economy, environment and social well-being.

Oregon planners and our elected officials will find ways to listen to the public again. We will draft plans that protect local values, grow Oregon’s economy, end our dependence on foreign oil, and protect our natural assets in exciting and innovative ways. Stay tuned...

Scot Siegel

Siegel Planning Services, LLC

Lake Oswego, Oregon
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