Corvallis City Council meetings can be lengthy. And sometimes very contentious. Often the meeting room at the downtown fire station is so full … that you would think the fire codes were being violated.
But we’re all time-starved in some way so I have noticed in my four years of reporting on such meetings that the crowd starts to thin out late in the evening … or after a contentious issue such as a land-use case or homeless funding or the Dakota Access Pipeline has been resolved.
That was the case Monday, in which the pipeline helped produced a standing-room-only crowd. And by the time the councilors got to the final order of business, their council reports, is usually the time in which I turn around and note that I am the only person left in the room. I am the public … so to speak.
Monday night I had quite a bit of company … of a special kind. City Council candidates Charles Maughan (Ward 2) Neil Goudriaan (Ward 3), Charlyn Ellis (Ward 5), Nancy Wyse (Ward 6) and Carl Price (Ward 8) all were still there, as was Rick McNern, who was there for the homeless funding debate.
It should be noted also that Hyatt Lytle, who is battling with Goudriaan in Ward 3 for the seat being vacated by Zach Baker, was on hand for at least 90 percent of the meeting.
So, to get to the point, I salute the candidates for giving up their Monday night to check in on the council in an effort to make themselves more effective if/when they take office. And I also must note that many of the above folks, as well as Ward 8 candidate Mark Page, have been seen at multiple meetings.
One caveat: Price, who also ran for the council in 2014, is ALWAYS at council meetings, sitting in his usual spot at the rear of the room where he uses an adjacent counter area for a desk.
It was good to have some late-night company in the audience.