Summary of Oct. 16 board meeting

October 18, 2023

The BPRD Board of Directors met on Oct. 16 and approved a purchase of a future park site and an updated land acquisition policy. A video recording of the meeting is available.

Future park site on Reed Lane

The district negotiated the purchase of 4.29-acres of land located at 20185 Reed Lane for a future neighborhood park site. The area of Southwest Bend is one of the search areas identified in the 2018 Comprehensive Plan to strive toward the goal of providing a park within a half-mile walk of most homes in the community. The board approved for the property to be purchased for $4 million from the Julia F. Coulter Revocable Living Trust. The closing is conditioned on the satisfactory completion of the district’s due diligence and board approval.

Land Acquisition Policy

The Land Acquisition Policy establishes guidelines for the acquisition of property for parks, trails, natural areas, recreation facilities or other needs. It is designed to provide clear guidance for district staff and the board of directors and allow the district to carry out acquisitions with a strategic, proactive and consistent approach.

The district first adopted a Land Acquisition Policy in February 2011 and later amended the policy in June 2019. The 2023 update streamlines approval thresholds for staff and the board, and clarifies due diligence processes for land acquisition.

Housing development presentation

In 2022, the Bend City Council adopted a new program to support development and redevelopment goals in Bend’s core and transit-oriented areas, and identified program requirements that would need to be met for multiple unit property tax exemption – or MUPTE — projects to be eligible.

Property tax exemptions must be supported by a combined 51-percent of the taxing districts for the exemption to apply, and each MUPTE request must be reviewed individually by the board. The board received an overview of a project proposed on the former Les Schwab Tires site on NE Franklin Avenue in the city’s designated “core area” to build two five-story mixed use buildings. In total, the proposed project includes 199 rental units, inclusive of 103 studios, 78 one-bedroom units and 18 two-bedroom units, as well as some commercial space.

Staff recommended and the board approved a ten-year tax abatement for the development. The motion passed 3-1 (Hovekamp opposed). Deschutes County Board of Commissioners reviewed the project on Oct. 11, and the Bend La Pine School District will review the project on Nov. 14. The project is scheduled for city council review on Dec. 6.

The board meeting on Nov. 7 is canceled; therefore, the next meeting is Nov. 21.