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Kitzhaber Voices Support For OSU's Cascades Campus Expansion

Governor John Kitzhaber stopped in Bend Thursday as part of a swing through Central Oregon.  He expressed his support for a plan to transform Oregon State’s Cascades Campus into a four-year university. 

Kitzhaber’s remarks came at a meeting of the Governor’s Central Oregon Regional Solutions Advisory Committee.

One participant called the establishment of a 4 year university, the single most important thing that could be done to bolster the economic and social health of the region.

In order to make that a reality, OSU is requesting $16 million in state funding.  Kitzhaber told the group he’s behind the plan - noting that by next biennium the state should have greater flexibility to raise money through the sale of bonds.

“I expect that will not be too heavy a lift.  Ultimately, the legislature will make that decision, not me.  But, I think we all recognize that this would be a very exciting addition to our post secondary capacity,” Kitzhaber said.

The conversation covered a variety of other topics — ranging from Central Oregon’s transportation infrastructure — to a push to test unmanned aerial drones in the region.

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