News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Incumbent seeks new term on Sisters City Council

City Councilor Andrea Blum’s current term is expiring, and she is hoping to be re-elected.

“We are in the middle of a huge transition here in Sisters. We have just scratched the surface of our Sisters Vision Plan and I want to be sure those goals and objectives are implemented. This is an exciting, energizing time for the city,” Blum said.

Blum began her Council career in 2014 when she was tapped to fill an open seat left vacant due to a resignation. In 2015 she was elected to a four-year term, during which time she had the challenge/pleasure of working with four different City Managers.

“Government has always been of interest to me,” Blum said, referring to herself as “a political junkie who tries to think local.” Her employment experience over the years bears that out. She served as the recording secretary for the Deschutes County Commission and the office manager for the Oregon Public Employees Union.

While on the Council, Blum has served as the Sisters representative on the Central Oregon Commission on Transportation (COACT), so she has been able to keep her finger on the pulse of plans for transportation projects in Central Oregon, including roundabouts in Sisters and elsewhere.

Blum said because of her five years on the Council, she can offer an historic perspective when needed, and also offer her experience and her time. Because she is retired, she is able to respond to last minute requests from the City staff for things like a signature on a check.

Blum’s main goal is to “keep Sisters livable.” With a growth rate of three percent per year, she is concerned about losing the small-town feel. She loves the city-wide events but thinks there needs to be careful consideration before adding any more to the calendar.

Blum sees one of the Council’s jobs this next year is to take the Vision and figure out ways to pay for it. She is also excited about the possibility of a master plan coming forward for the portion of the Lazy Z property that the City owns (south of Highway 20). Two major items that Blum thinks the Council needs to address are fire danger for the City and how the City can convert to green energy.

“When asked why I am running again for City Council, I reply it is what I can give back to this incredibly special place. . . Because of my experience, I am most suited to work in our local government,” while other citizens share their own talents that make Sisters so special.

“However, our secret is out, and growth is coming to Sisters. My pledge is to view every decision I make on City Council through the lens of whether it will preserve, protect, or enhance the livability of Sisters,” Blum said.

Blum is most proud of the work Council did in working with an affordable housing developer to provide the last piece of funding that allowed the Ponderosa Heights affordable housing project to come to Sisters. She thinks one of the more contentious issues Council has addressed is policies for special events. They are essential to economic prosperity but bring significant disruption to local residents. Blum has not always agreed with everything that was enacted but, “I believe Council will continue to fine tune the process as more demands on our community resources increase.”

Blum and her husband, Jack, moved from Salem to Sisters Country in 1988, “before the sewers and prosperity.” They now reside in Pine Meadow Village.


Reader Comments(0)