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Regional Interests

Longtime land-use advocate Bob Stacey to step down from Metro Council

The Oregon Metro Regional Center on Southeast Grand Avenue in Portland, Oregon, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019.
The Oregon Metro Regional Center on Southeast Grand Avenue in Portland, Oregon, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019.

After decades as land-use advocate, advisor to elected officials and public servant himself, Bob Stacey is leaving his position on the regional government Metro Council to prioritize his health.

Metro has a range of responsibilities in Multnomah, Clackamas and Washington counties that includes land-use planning, solid waste disposal, managing natural areas and running venues including the Oregon Zoo and the Oregon Convention Center. Stacey’s expertise has been in helping Metro’s complicated and often controversial oversight of transportation and urban growth planning in the Portland region.

He came to Metro from the land conservation and legal realms, as an attorney and leader of the advocacy group 1,000 Friends of Oregon, with experience in the state’s land-use system dating back to its beginnings in the mid-1970s and the conflict with the Rajneeshees in Wasco County. Stacey was also a leading opponent of efforts to reduce Oregon’s land use regulations in the 2000s when voters approved measures intended to force the government to waive restrictions or reimburse property owners when government rules impacted their ability to develop or change their land.

Stacey was first elected to the Metro Council in 2012 to represent a district that covers much of the southern part of Portland.

Stacey is leaving office for health reasons. He has been dealing with tumors in his meninges, between his brain and skull, since at least 2013, when he underwent surgery to have part of a tumor removed. According to an article on Metro’s website, Stacey said the condition and its treatment make it difficult for him to analyze and think clearly.

“I wish I could continue to serve my constituents and the public interest as a Metro councilor,” Stacey said. “But I no longer have the capacity to do that job – and manage my health.”

He intends to leave the council on Oct. 15..

According to Metro, the council has until mid-January to appoint Stacey’s successor.

Copyright 2021 Oregon Public Broadcasting