Talent council taps parks commissioner Pederson to fill vacancy

TALENT — Parks Commissioner Ryan Pederson was appointed to fill vacant Position 5 on the Talent City Council during the council's Wednesday evening meeting. The appointment runs through December 2014.

"I am passionate about helping the community I live in. It's such a wonderful place to live, and I want to give back," Pederson said during an interview conducted by the council. He's lived in Talent for five years.

During Pederson's time on the city Parks Commission, he helped develop a master plan and the department's budget. He's also served as a Harvest Festival volunteer.

The appointee said his work as a data and systems analyst and administrator should aid the city. He has a degree in political science.

"Decisions the city makes in planning and zoning and enforcement really affect everyone," said Pederson.

Ian Reid, a city Budget Committee member and Harvest Festival volunteer, and Anthony Abshire, also on the Budget Committee and a member of the Bear Creek Community Emergency Response Team, applied for the vacancy, as well.

On the first ballot, council members Teresa Cooke, Joan Dean, E.J. McManus and Darby Stricker gave Pederson the top ranking. Councilman Don Steyskal named Abshire his top choice.

Pederson replaces Councilwoman Diane Glendenning, who resigned and moved to Idaho. Glendenning had been elected in November 2010. Cooke was elected council president, replacing Glendenning in that position.

In other business, the council referred a resolution back to the Planning Commission for further consideration.

The measure would amend an ordinance covering accessory structures of less than 200 square feet. Council members raised questions about numbers of structures allowed and their locations on lots.

The council also approved the $10.8 million city budget for fiscal year 2013-14.

The total includes a $1.5 million federal grant for a new community center. No testimony was offered during a public hearing on the budget.

Tony Boom is a freelance writer living in Ashland. Reach him at tboomwriter@gmail.com.

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