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Mirror Pond initiatives could answer: What's next?

By Brittany Weiner
Published On: Apr 02 2014 10:01:27 PM CDT
Updated On: Apr 02 2014 10:04:42 PM CDT

NewsChannel 21's Brittany Weiner has the latest developments on what's next for Mirror Pond.

BEND, Ore. -

No more leak in the Mirror Pond hydroelectric dam means no end to summer recreation on the river.

"That's great news for us, because we have several thousand floaters going down the river every week, in the middle of the summertime," Bend Parks and Rec District Executive Director Don Horton said Wednesday.

So that's one problem fixed, but the big question still remains: what to do next with Mirror Pond?

"We're continuing to work with PacifiCorp and the city of Bend in negotiations with Pacific Power to see what a transfer of ownership of that dam might look like," Horton said. "We also need to look at water rights issues and permitting issues."

Both the park board and the Bend City Council have already voted unanimously to try to preserve the pond, if it's feasible.

"I think the people of Bend deserve a vote on the future of Mirror Pond," Bend Resident Foster Fell said.

Fell has written two ballot initiatives he hopes will help decide the next step for the historic pond. One ballot title is being challenged over its wording by a lawyer for the park district.

"When you start to nitpick grammar, your intent is to delay rather than to help," Fell said.

Fell's ballot initiatives would aim to set limits on funding by the city and park district, requiring the investments be aimed at improving trout habitat, improve recreation -- and allow no more dredging of silt, something that was last done in 1984.

To read more on Fell's initiatives, you can visit: freetheriver.org

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