▶️ City of Bend seeking public input on potential shelters, code changes

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The City of Bend is seeking public input on proposed development code changes, but you only have until Monday to make your voice heard.

The code changes would let the city put homeless shelters or managed camps in most zoning districts.

Over 750 community members have already voiced their opinions through an online survey, and multiple options are on the table.

“So they’re looking at what we’re calling an outdoor shelter, which is like a managed camp or something like the Veterans Village,” Susanna Julber, City of Bend senior project and policy analyst said. “Then there’s a group shelter, which is sort of what you think of with the homeless shelter on 2nd Street. And then a multi-room shelter, kind of like the Bethlehem Inn.”

It is all part of Bend city council’s goal to provide 500 shelter beds of varying types, and public input is an important part of that.

Community members have already voiced opposition to a proposed managed homeless camp on NE 9th Street.

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“We take that and kind of weigh the support or different suggestions on topics,” Julber said. “That’s what kind of comes out of the final recommendations or the adopted code.”

The city currently authorizes temporary shelters in times of emergency, such as extreme weather, but that could change.

“The code changes will authorize those without having to go through an emergency order by the city manager,” Julber said.

The Sounding Board to House Our Neighbors will be looking at public submissions at their next meeting on November 10th, and will then go to the planning commission in January.

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