CANYONVILLE — The mayor says his experience with budgets and his deep roots in the community qualify him to keep the position, while the challenger, a member of the City Council, promises to put residents first.
“I plan to take care of the citizens and the fiscal responsibility of the city,” said challenger Dennis Douglas, who has lived in the city since 2003. “I want to be more of a hands-on mayor.”
Incumbent Bob Deaton, who has lived in Canyonville his whole life and been mayor for eight years, said he wants to make sure the city prospers by revitalizing downtown.
“I want to see that everyone is taken care of, that everyone is treated equitably and fairly,” he said. “I want to see Canyonville grow.”
Deaton and Douglas are opposing each other on the Nov. 6 ballot for a four-year term.
Deaton said his top priority is holding the line on the cost of constructing a sewer plant. He cited working with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and altering plans to bring the project down to $13 million from the original price of $16 million.
“I want to get the plant built as economically as we can. We don’t have to increase costs unless absolutely necessary,” he said.
Douglas expressed an interest to be more involved in the sewer project. He also said he wants to focus on the Canyonville economy.
“My main thing is not having unnecessary taxes. I am concerned about excessive taxes to the town,” Douglas said.
Deaton said his priorities would be repairing streets and upgrading the water system.
He said he opposes a proposal by U-Trans to create a transportation district to expand bus service in Douglas County, though he held open the possibility of supporting increased bus service in the future.
Douglas stressed the importance of having a government that is more accessible to the people.
Deaton worked with the Oregon Department of Transportation for 40 years before retiring. He said his background working for ODOT gave him experience with budgets, personnel issues and contracts.
“I’ve also learned an awful lot in the last two terms as mayor,” he said.
Douglas said he if he’s elected he would hold town hall meetings so citizens can share their ideas with the mayor and the City Council.
Deaton said he intends to help Canyonville grow and make projects as affordable as possible for residents.
“I want to make it a place where people want to be,” he said.
• Reporter Betsy Swanback can be reached at 541-957-4208 or firstname.lastname@example.org.