Monday, July 30, 2007

Super Burrito, We Hardly Knew Ye

I usually have the crux of these posts boiling over in my head the previous week. I was going to write about the Big Signs I see at vast empty swaths of platted subdivs, several signs of desperation, comparisons of Bends bubble imploding with Bubbles past, I even got a great string (my opinion) of spreadsheets on Google, that have some pretty good stats (data courtesy of my friendly nemesis, BendBB)... and I still plan on writing about this stuff.

But I am starting to get a real sense of forbidding doom about Bend. I wrote in my May 29 post:

I've said 100X, we need anchor tenant employers. Big Ones, now, and we should pay for them. Tax incentives, or whatever, just get them here. We will have to bite the bullet and absorb a LOT of their costs to get them here. If we keep going down the Build RE & Screw the Rest road, we will have an economic A-bomb go off in Bend. Oregon Woodworking, Seaswirl, Columbia Air will turn into closing Safeways, McDonalds, and Wendys which will then turn into Mondo Pizza, Super Burrito, and God help us, Pegasus Books. There will be no one who can work these jobs, because homes cost 3X what anyone can afford.

And so it went, Super Burrito is closing down.

You can read at the top of this blog, it's "mission statement":

Debating the Bend Oregon Real Estate bubble, its implications for Bend residents, businesses, and the economic outlook for this area.

It is just with a real sense of sadness and mourning... and even hopelessness, that I saw that Super Burrito is no more. Sounds sort of stupid talking about the loss of such a small place going under, and if you saw me, you'd probably think that I could use less Super Burrito and the like in my life. Probably true.

But Super Burrito and other small businesses like it epitomize the sort of "pioneering spirit" that seemed to exist in Bend just a few short years ago. When I got here, I found it pretty amazing the number of very small (1-5 employees) businesses around here. From a purely financial standpoint, it was really "suboptimal": Tons of tiny businesses run in some of the most off the wall ways you can think of, just grinding out a day to day existence. I talked to & met so many small businesses that had no computerized bookkeeping software, and never would! I still don't understand how they are surviving.

And that's what's leaving: People and their lives with odd, quirky, strange-ass businesses doing business on their own terms, living life how they want, and to hell with financial & otherwise technological advancement & optimization. I mean, there's a freakin' "Rock Garden" between here and Redmond! Tell me you didn't laugh when you saw that Petersen Rock Garden sign for the first time!

It's strange little things like this that I thought were so great, when I first got here. Some really kooky types, doing some pretty damn kooky stuff to get by. It was great!

But the Central Oregon RE bubble has changed all that. Much of the character this place had is being irretrievable lost, soley because the kooky, low ROI businesses that inhabit this area are overwhelmed by a once-in-a-lifetime shot at the RE jackpot-lottery that has hit. They can make 20-30-50X what they paid for plots 20 years ago. There's no way they can ignore that sort of payday.

Probably far more prevalent, are small businesses, like Super Burrito, that lease premises. The commercial land rush that has ensued is simply making these places financially untenable. Super Burrito, DID NOT suffer from chronically low volume. Super Burrito is simply an unworkable business model in The New Bend. No amount of $5 widgets, be they burrito's, or whatever, can sustain a $3/sq ft lease.

Super Burrito, Mondo's, and other quirky little places were a big reason I decided to come to Bend & live. You can walk in, and typically the owner will be there, and they might be nice, or they might be the Worlds biggest asshole, but there was some variety & substance, that gave the experience "texture", for lack of a better term. I LIKE nice owners, I LIKE assholes... I like variety.

What I HATE is generic corporatized, shelacked-over, canned-bullshit, "It's a great day at Red Robin, I'll be your server, can I recommend the buffalo wings for you today?" personality-in-a-box CRAP! I hate that. I mean compared to that, I LOVE the looks of contempt & loathing with no words and the implied, "Why don't you hurry up & order Whitey?", that you'll get at any decent Mexican shack. I love the restrooms so filthy I wouldn't dream of letting my kids use them, next to the checksheet hanging on the back of the restroom door use see at Corporate Central.

Bend, The Bubble has produced Bend, Inc. Bend, Inc., is generic, boring, repetitive, monotonous, too clean, too nice, life-in-a-box, everyone is a Wal-Mart greeter. Bend, Inc. sucks ass. Bend, Inc. offers a life barely worth living.

I think I sort of knew Super Burrito probably could not survive it's lease re-up... but I had hope. After all, they do a great business, and I thought, "If there is a small local place that can survive downtown, it's them". Wrong. And there is little indication of the trend abating.

A lot can survive at $.50/sf ft. All sorts of weird stuff. There is a thin variety that can make it at $3 sq ft. That's why Vail, CO is just one big shopping mall catering to out-of-towners. It's sort of interesting for a day or two. But after that, Vail is just awful. I had a girlfriend there back in the day, and there was literally nothing to do there. If you wanted to hike or bike, it was great. But even avid hike/bike types do not live by that alone, and if you wanted some "variety" you had to get on the highway and go like 100 miles. She took me to Aspen, and after a long day of walking around, I just thought, "We could have stayed in Vail & done this".

Well, sorry to indulge in so much melancholy. But Super Burrito closing just seems like the beginning of some "Loss Of Innocence". Bend IS changing, and it is changing for good, and there seems to be no going back. I latched onto the idea that if there were some sort of RE implosion, that we could revert back to some sort of pre-2003 normalcy, and much of the character of Central OR's "characters" would be preserved. I'm not sure that's possible anymore. If there were a local success story that could survive around here, it was Super Burrito. That place just epitomized so much of what made Bend great: That just a small number of people could stake a claim & make it here. Didn't need a Kings Ransom, connections, or even Mensa-level IQ. Normal people doing normal stuff on their own terms, and Making It.

Bend, Inc., is a Bend where the individual is being "squeezed" out... you DO need a Kings Ransom, you need connections. And worse, there seems to be this preference for this to happen with the Powers That Be. I mean, there was to be an affordable apt building put downtown, and before ground even broke, it has partially converted to unaffordable condos, with not just the blessing but FULL BLOWN APPROVAL of Bend's City Councilors. It will not be too long before this "Affordable Apartment" building is 100% converted to ridiculous condos. All the while, Bend taxpayers funded the boondoggle with a partial giveaway of the land on which it'll sit. The City WANTS the Little Guy the hell out of here.

So, I will stay in Bend... for now. But I have to admit, my thoughts are turning to leaving. I'm going to Baker City soon, and I actually will turn an eye towards moving there, maybe. Bend, Inc., is not my bag. And Bend, Inc. consumed in what I believe will be the most catastrophic economic implosions of it's existence, is even less appealing. Have no doubt, Bend, in 10 years, will be mired in economic malaise. That, in itself, would be tolerable. But, bland-ass, monotonous, sterile, checkbox living surrounded by mindless automatons, is not.

138 comments:

The Dalles said...

There are people in Central Oregon with balls, the below came out of a recent "The Dalles" UGB meeting.

***

Matt Bowen presented a petition in opposition to UGB expansion with 317 signatures.
“They’re happy with the town the size it is,” Bowen said. “They’re happy not getting rich. I talked to 20 other towns, and they said ’You’re a mark. You better slam your doors, or you’ll end up like Bend.’”

Walmart Partners, LLC said...

Talbot. H. James. My name is Jim Talbot, and I'm the principal owner in the Desertscape. Development LLC Partnership

At the beginning of the month, Moreno ( super burrito ) said DesertScape (WALMART) issued a 30-day notice to move out because the space would no longer be used for food service.

*

Why would walmart want to put a little mexican burrito shop down?

Jim Talbot, representing Desertscape Development LLC, appeared before the Planning Commission ... Wal-Mart took some of their tenants, but they have been working hard to bring in quality tenants

*

It appears that Talbot while principle of Desertscape is a front for Walmart. Note that desertscape is also the principle in the super-walmart in Bend, DBA desertscape.

*

Lets step into the wayback machine just a moment. To analyze those that killed our beloved super-burrito. Note from this time forward the mention of the vile name "desert-scape' should cause one to vomit on those that utter the word.

Local investment company buys D.H. Sphier Building
By Eric Flowers / The Bulletin
Published: January 10. 2006 5:00AM

A local investment company that has purchased two buildings in downtown Bend in the past nine months bought a third building last week.

Deschutes County records show that Bend-based DesertScape acquired the historic D.H. Sphier Building, 901 Bond St., for $3.65 million. The sale closed Jan. 3.

The building, which is located at the corner of Minnesota Avenue and Bond Street, houses three restaurants, an antique store, hair salon and a jeweler.

Based on Deschutes County property records, DesertScape paid roughly $521 per square foot for the Sphier Building, slightly less than the roughly $650 per square foot it paid for a pair of properties down the street at 1028 and 1030 Bond St.

Still, those numbers represent a dramatic increase over then-record sales prices recorded in 2004 when downtown buildings were trading hands for between $220 and $375 per square foot. Downtown prices in 2003 were still below $200 per square foot in some areas.

"It's a great building," said Craig Glazier, a partner in DesertScape. "It came up for sale and we bought it. We don't have any plans to redevelop it at this point. And anything we do 10 years down the road, if it ever gets to that point, will maintain the historic character of that asset."


Tenants in the Sphier Building wonder if the sale could translate into higher lease rates that would squeeze them out of downtown.

"We know that we won't be here," said Wendy Sexton, who has operated Trivia Antiques at the corner of Bond Street and Minnesota Avenue since 1984 and believes the sales price could lead to a rent hike.

Sexton said she has two more years left on her lease with an option for an additional five, but thinks the agreement could be broken by the new owners.

She pays $2,672 per month after agreeing to a $1,000-per-month increase last year to keep her space. She's concerned that could rise again.

Glazier said DesertScape has no plans to break leases or increase monthly rents in the Sphier Building.

"We're not sitting here looking to wring an extra $200 out of the tenants," he said. "The building pays for itself. It's a long-term investment ... I hope someday to leave it as an asset to my kids."

Under building-height limits approved by the city in 2004, DesertScape could theoretically take the Sphier Building up to 55 feet.

Any large-scale renovation of the single-story building, which was built in 1917 and once was the home of the Bend Post Office, would have to be reviewed and approved by the city of Bend and the Deschutes County Historic Landmarks Commission.

But a makeover, including an additional story, is not outside the realm of possibility, provided the design meets historic guidelines, said Pat Kliewer, Deschutes County historic resources planner.

The building is the latest downtown acquisition for DesertScape, which is operated by Glazier and his partner, David Shelofsky, a native of Half Moon Bay, Calif.

In April 2005, the firm purchased St. Clair Place, a boutique mall across the street from the Sphier Building, for $6.2 million.

In June, DesertScape partnered with St. Clair Place developer Doug Knight on a $2.6 million deal for the properties at 1028 and 1030 Bond St. Since that acquisition, one of the building's longtime tenants, Yoko's Japanese restaurant, has left, citing an inability to afford new lease terms.

Recently, Knight shared plans with the city of Bend for the redevelopment of the Yoko's site with a four-story, mixed-use residential, retail and office building. Those plans also include the possibility of two additional floors later.

But a recent decision by the City Council to lower the building height from 70 feet to 60 feet on the east side of Bond Street could affect the final design.
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bendbutt said...

Note the BULL story from Jan 2006, was that Super-Burrito building was bought by penny ante local's, with some pardner's down cali way, nuttin about no Walmart, LLC.

HBM said...

Mama where's my BULL?


No Bend Bulletin, No Cry
By Joseph Friedrichs, 7-28-07


Not that I would ever consider spending 50 cents to purchase a Saturday edition of the Bend Bulletin, but I couldn’t help but notice this morning that all of the paper’s newsstands downtown were empty.

This observation led me to believe one of two things occurred. The first possibility was that some serious, and I’m talking like “Tsunami Destroys Oregon Coast” or “Bush Visits Bend, Fondles Small Child,” type news had broken. The other, and more likely of the two things to create empty Bulletin stands, was that they had a printing problem.

They did.

All over town the kind, lulled and mostly well-aged readers of the Bulletin are having a terrible Saturday. No one in the coffee shops or diners across town had a copy of the July 28, 2007, Bend Bulletin. Stacks of Friday’s papers were scattered about, but reading a dated newspaper is about as fulfilling as getting taken to dinner by the Bulletin Editorial Board.

“May I have another glass of wine?”

“No, you may not.”

My friend Al Borlin, who has the investigative instincts of a 1970s Washington Post reporter, informed me that the Bulletin did print at least some copies today, with a strange message across the flag explaining “mechanical difficulties.”

Borlin told me he saw a Saturday paper in front of Deschutes Brewery downtown, but when I arrived to grab it for research purposes, it had already vanished.

My next move was to call the Bulletin office and try to get even a brief explanation as to why there were no papers. After repeated phone calls kept giving me a busy signal, my patience ran out and I headed back to the streets.

I ended up at the great Bend Public Library. The library always has two copies of the Bulletin on hand, and sure enough the flawed papers Borlin had told me about were there. When I snatched the paper off the shelf, I nearly buckled over with laughter. The weight of the Bulletin reminded me of my high school paper. It contained only one section, with 16 pages of mostly national news.

On top of page one read: NOTE TO READERS, Due to mechanical difficulties, The Bulletin was unable to publish a complete paper today. Please see the index at right for today’s news content. Delivery may also have been affected. For a more complete Saturday edition, including advertising and real estate listings, visit http://www.bendbulletin.com The Bulletin regrets any inconvenience this may have caused readers.

And that’s it. Today is the day where the Bend Bulletin does not really exist. Not the way THEY would like it to, anyhow. And although the initial shockwaves of not reading the Saturday Bend Bulletin may have been difficult to digest for some, in the long run a few Bulletin-less days should prove to be just fine.

Oh, and if you want to hop online and read the complete Bulletin as they suggest doing, it will cost you. To boost circulation numbers, the Bulletin charges readers to subscribe to their online edition. So you might as well grab your credit card now if you want the July 28 edition of the Bulletin

Little Guy said...

The City WANTS the Little Guy the hell out of here.

*

Who will work the gift shops? Where will they sleep? In Redmond?

Perhaps this is why the City shoved the BUS system down our ass last year, so there would be transportation to the downtown jobs.

Like Aspen, nobody can live there, except billionaires. Even the model will not work, yes the city doesn't want white-trash, that's why the cops in Bend are writing dog-off-leash tickets OVER traffic citations.

Where is this all going, and is it sustainable? No only from the point of view of driving costs higher.

Here is a point, rents are going up to pay the outrageous loan costs, eventually nobody can pay, as how in the hell will anybody make enough, except starbucks which an afford to lose, just to have a presence, but how many starbucks are there??

bendbutt said...

Who will work the gift shops? Where will they sleep? In Redmond?

Perhaps this is why the City shoved the BUS system down our ass last year, so there would be transportation to the downtown jobs.

*

Actually this is a good subject, thursday night before the Deschutes County UGB meeting I'm having a beer at Silver-Moon, and there are a bunch of guys talking DUI.

All of them with a suspended drivers license, the subject of the bus came up, and the response was "There is NO fucking bus from Bend To Redmond or LA-Pines".

I'm sure the beautiful people of Bend, don't want white trash coming to Bend from Redmond or LA-Pines, but how in the hell can they come to work here?

Even twenty years ago this was the way, folks that worked downtown in the bars all lived in trailers in LA-PINES, there were no jobs there, but in those days cops weren't assholes.

Now there are no buses, most of the work force has lost their drivers license, ... Something has to give?

Smells Like Bend said...

According to Urban Growth Planning Bend only has two problems.

SHIT & TRAFFIC

During the last ten year building boom, the average infrastructure cost was $50k/home, but the city was ONLY making the builder pass $12k to the buyer, thus nobody ever paid for infrastructure, it just got deferred.

Now that the homes ARE NO longer selling you cannot defer, because its clear that next week the buyer isn't even coming let alone will to PAY $100K+ ( past & present infrastructure ) costs, traffic in EAST Bend is So bad now people cannot go shopping, and you know that it cannot get any worse than that.

The current rules say that ALL new home must be located such that the SHIT flows toward the central SHIT-STATION, and the trouble is that all that land is gone, and nobody is willing to pay for new shit-stations or pumping stations, so literally Bend is now full of shit, and with no place to go.

Current estimates are a billion dollars for flood, sewage, and water. A billion dollars is the current value of un-sold Bend home inventory ( 3,000 homes on market at $350k median ). There's NO money, cars on east side have come to a stop, and the town is full of shit.

BilboBend said...

Duncan,

Your famous again today in the Source, this time HBM agree's with you, but the solution is to make downtown Bigger.

He says that downtown was made for a 20K population, and now WE must grow south, east, and north.

In order to have a 'walk-friendly' downtown, we can't move the cop-shop can we? Can we move the court house? Can we move the new FWY bypass ( WHY DID THEY RUN IT THROUGH TOWN NOT OUT EAST? )

Why NOT go west? HBM says we can't, but certainly we can pipe the deschutes, and that Drake Park would make a great Urban Walmart or Outlet Store. East? Again that new bypass needs to be move 'underground'.

Hell I can see BILLIONS of dollars of construction in buildi

Anonymous said...

I read your blog all the time, but you never get my posts. We moved to Baker a yr ago. Dont miss Bend at all. Jobs are hard to get here tough, but hopefully someday there will be more jobs.

Keeneye said...

We saw the writing on the wall awhile ago. I quit my job at the newspaper, hubby quit his job bartending in downtown Bend, and we moved to Baker.

As the above "Anonymous" comment mentioned, there aren't many jobs here just yet, so you have to bring one with you or create one once you're here (which is what we're doing).

Drop a line when you're coming to town - we'll be happy to give you the tour! (signed) Bend Refugees, Whitey & Keeneye (keeneye @ gmail dawt calm)

Anonymous said...

Baker County has 8% unemployment. Deschutes about 5%. And jobs would come to Baker why?

Anonymous said...

It's really tough for small Oregon cities to compete to get jogs. Portland is robust, but that's about it.

If you were a company, and you felt you didn't have to locate in NY, Seattle, San Francisco or Los Angeles, you'd probably choose a more economical place than a small Oregon town.

It's a sad fact for people who want to work in central Oregon that it just doesn't make sense for jobs to come here.

http://www.nrtw.org/rtws.htm

Anonymous said...

I live in Baker, and my wife is working at the truck stop.

Work is slow tonight she brought home five bucks in tips.

I think tomorrow we'll have some kind of party with the money, and invite the neighborhood.

Anonymous said...

Esteemed IHTBYB I live in Sand Point, Idaho. Your blog is ever so poplar here.
We feel your pain regarding the mexican problem.
Too bad about your super burrito, we lot our taco-box last year.

Anonymous said...

You can't say taco-box here. This is a family website.

JD Gray said...


WHO DO BEND'S COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT EMPLOYEES WORK FOR?

You decide. Developers pay their salaries through application fees. Their sense of ownership is so great one demanded a refund because he claimed Community Development employees couldn't prove they worked hard enough on his behalf.

Planning is NOT a service for the rich, it is a gatekeeper to keep the environment from being destroyed. The problem for the past twenty years in Bend, is that developers proposed and built, and filled out paper later. The City NEVER enforced LCDC law ( SB100 1972 ), the State didn't care because Salem can give a shit about eastern oregon.

The bend developers in their WHOLE life never had to worry about state law, but NOW, guess whats happening? A few lawyers are started to force the Salem AG to enforce the law.

***

Before J.D. Gray ( Sunriver Founder ) got into the land planning and control business, and created LCDC and helped Hector McPherson Pass a little boiler-plate called SB100, from florida and Hawaii, he was a lucky-logger. JD Gray CEO of OMARK creator of the modern Chain-Saw. A very lucky logger, and the richest man in Oregon in the 1970's.

Anonymous said...

Hola

My name is Juan I live in Mexico. I'm thinking of coming to your Bend, Oregon for work.

How much an hour can I get? Housing? Medical? Family? Schools? Quality of life? Entertainment?

I would appreciate any information. I'm down to Bend or Aspen, and I need to make this decision ASAP.

adios,

Boss Hog, INC. said...

If you were a company, ..., you'd probably choose a more economical place than a small Oregon town.

***

If I were a company. I would locate as far as possible from schools, roads, and diversity.

I would want a place that has high property costs, and expensive cost of living. A place that is impossible to get to in the winter, and with no air travel. A place that is ran by the richest guy in the hood that week, and hopefully when I moved there I would be that richest guy for a long time, so I could run the town.

The place would have to be near no railroad, or freeway system, and all fuel would have to come in over mountains. Its critical that all components brought to our company have the highest possible cost in shipping to and from our remote site. My business model is to maximize costs that I can pass on to my customers.

Is there such a place that our company can settle? Does anyone know where this place is??

Anonymous said...

Kind HBM,
Do they pay you buy the hour to write these short sentences? If they pay you buy the word you would starve.
How can someone afford to live in Bend working for The Source? Do you have a day job? Do you have a spouse problem?
Do you care at all about Bend or are you just trying to get rich like everyone else in Bend?

***
the below came out of a recent "The Dalles" UGB meeting.
***

Matt Bowen presented a petition in opposition to UGB expansion with 317 signatures.
“They’re happy with the town the size it is,” Bowen said. “They’re happy not getting rich. I talked to 20 other towns, and they said ’You’re a mark. You better slam your doors, or you’ll end up like Bend.’”
***
Can you imagine that statement, the fact that there are city's in Eastern Oregon, where people aren't trying to get rich. What about the concept that people who think they're going to get rich are marks? These folks in The Dalles have figured out exactly what is going on. Lastly, note the resonant message in all of Eastern Oregon is now "We dont' want to turn into Bend", A city full of shit and traffic.

Anonymous said...

Dont laugh, last summer we did have a block party here in Baker city, cost was nothing, had a great turn out too. Everyone in the neighborhood had to pick something out one neighbors garden and make a special dish out of it, we even had fresh homemade strawberry Icecream. Cost was nothing. Great sence of community.I do wish Bend could turn back time, Its used to be such a fine place to live.

Anonymous said...

Now why would we laugh at that? It's the sweetest thing anyone has ever said on this blog.

Nothing wrong with a good old fashioned low budget party.

--TT

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

Dont laugh, last summer we did have a block party here in Baker city, cost was nothing, had a great turn out too.

Ditto. Some people actually put shopping & consumerism far down their list of amenities. Sitting around talking to neighbors would be a great way to spend nights, in my opinion.

I doubt I could do that here in Bend, brand new subdiv, except for the fact there are an inordinate number of kids here, and they insist on playing together 12 hrs a day. It's actually great. The kids get along great around here. Some of the adults... a "little" uptight. Were it not for the kids, this might be a more sterile neighborhood.

I am headed Baker City/John Day way soon, just to do some camping. But the direction Bend is going will induce me to at least look at some homes too. When talking to "outsiders" about coming in, it' all "unbounded, wonderful growth", but when planning the UGB, it's "2.2% growth, maybe less". The sum total outcome of this mindset is to preserve unlivable high prices, in a town full of min wage shit jobs.

Illegal signs? $600 fine... well, unless you're a Realtor. We'll have a meeting to let you squeak by, or just have a word with the cops. The arbitrary, glad-handing, old boy network way of doing business here is just unbelievable.

Anonymous said...

I lived in Johnday most of my life, now Baker City.True Eastern Oregonian here. Realstate is going up over here but if you keep a sharp eye open you can still find affortable housing. If you love freedom and the mountains you cannot help but fall in love with the eastern part of the state. Not much for shopping but I like to spend my time outside anyway. Eastern Oregonians do stick togeather here and they will fight for what they beleave in. The travel management for the national forest has got everyone here all upset, but a proud bunch of people are sticking togeather on the issue and are staying very active in it.

Anonymous said...

the Optimist says...

Didn't Super Burrito say they are looking for a new location? Maybe they will find it...

Anonymous said...

Super Burrito can move here, soon we will have the best pizza on the west coast.

Anonymous said...

>>...soon we will have the best pizza on the west coast.

That's like saying best cheese on the moon.

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

From:
Looking beyond airplanes
Manufacturer hopes to sell its composite technology


Columbia recorded losses in 2004, 2005 and 2006 and is likely to report an annual loss again this year, Majid said.

“We had 90 planes produced, but we were not able to sell them to generate income,” Majid said of last year’s situation, noting that several of Columbia’s parts suppliers could not be paid on time because of the lack of sales revenue. “In order to survive, we had to stress some of our payables. But we’re stabilized now. Cash flow is still tight, but we’re now up to date on our payables.”

He added that, although he has not discussed the issue with Columbia’s board of directors, the company is likely to continue operating.

“From my perspective, if the board wanted to close down the company, they would have done it in 2006, with all the financial problems at the time,” Majid said.


Wow, Columbia was close to death. And from this statement, they are not out of the woods.

Personally, I think this composite tech licensing, or whatever it is, is a GREAT idea. I hope they proceed with it, it seems to be a far lower capital-intensive route than building airplanes, which is highly cyclical, and can have brutal downturns... which the industry is not even experiencing at all right now. If things go South, Columbia would almost certainly fold. They probably have several tech processing things they could license... I would actually ultimately expect them to exit aircraft mfg, highly cyclical and not very profitable at all even in the best of times (like right now).

They would be a far smaller company, but probably very profitable, and given time, composites could put them past mfg aircraft. I think this is a good idea for them.

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

Sorry, here's the crux of that Columbia piece:

Bend-based Columbia Aircraft Manufacturing Corp. may be known as an airplane maker, but the company — one of the largest private employers in Central Oregon — may market its composite building technology to other aircraft manufacturers to boost revenue, Columbia’s new CEO said.

Wan Majid, appointed as Columbia’s chief executive by the company’s board last spring, said Friday that leveraging the airplane maker’s composite aircraft expertise is key in restoring Columbia’s profitability.

“I would like to see Columbia become the leading company in composite technology,” which would allow Columbia to generate profits independent of airplane sales, Majid said.

“I think we can partner our technology with any company in any industry. We can partner with other general aviation companies, and that would allow us to broaden our reach in the market while minimizing risk.”

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

Eastern Oregonians do stick togeather here and they will fight for what they beleave in. The travel management for the national forest has got everyone here all upset, but a proud bunch of people are sticking togeather on the issue and are staying very active in it.

This sort of "pioneering" spirit DID exist in Bend, very recently. A real sense of "Live Free or Die".

Now it is 100% make money at all costs, even if it means destroying the lives of many, many other people. Or even just wrecking a little piece of what they thought they were getting when they came. This sort of human "cannibalism" runs the gamut:

Apartment bldgs going condo, and every person in it gets the boot. Same with virtually every mobile home park.

BT residents either pay a fortune for golf memeberships, or it's Ferris Wheel time.

Mountain High gets the same Faustian bargain - "Let us do what we want, or we'll totally wreck this thing for EVERYONE, including ourselves".

Prop 37 has created a patchwork of land use nightmares willy nilly.

Downtown is in-process of a gutting of local businesses, and replacing them with a monotonous string of "Gallery - Expensive Restaurant - Expensive Clothing - T-shirt Shop - Starbucks - Repeat".

It's about the All Mighty Dollar (which is OK), but the paradoxical way in which it is being driven by the City, just absolutely assures the destruction of this town. I keep wondering, "Are they really this stupid, or is this actually part of some sort of planned agenda to attempt to dramatically downsize this town & upize per capita income?"

So, I'm OK with progress, growth, and even the occasion price increase, but sometimes it seems this thing is being actively managed to destroy places like Columbia, and other large employers, in preference to service industry, min wage jobs, which this place is producing.

I actually think that employers like Columbia will either drastically downsize & morph into a different sort of business (tech consulting), or they'll leave (or close, same thing). Columbia is just the sort of Start Small And Grow entrepreneurial company that CANNOT even make a start here anymore.

Someone wrote in a comment long ago about coming to Bend with $10K, starting a business, getting by on a hard-scrabble existence, and ultimately making a go of it and succeeding. Is this possible now? Hell NO! $10K (even adjusting mightily for inflation) will last 5 minutes here. We are ensuring that the only thing that can survive is Coprorate Funded Monotony.

And what's funny, is that much of Bend's Old Guard will ultimately be blown away by WAY Bigger Fish. This thing will take down everyone. Sisters Coffee House, a very nice & successful place, will get mowed down by Starbucks ultimately. There is no end to the depths of Starbucks pocketbook.

UGB should have been expanded years ago, land prices should have been managed at some stable inflation adjusted price... we'd be OK had this happened. Aspenization of Bend WILL FAIL, and fail so catastrophically, it'll be hard to EVER recover.

I still marvel at the thought that this is THE BIGGEST story in this area for the next decade or more... and people are so blindly unaware. It's totally baffling. The Implosion has already started, and 80% of Bend thinks either it's not happening, and many think that it'll NEVER happen. I am dumbfounded by this.

Anonymous said...

>>The Implosion has already started, and 80% of Bend thinks either it's not happening, and many think that it'll NEVER happen. I am dumbfounded by this.

I wonder if they believe it's not happening, or they just think the right thing to do is express optimistic thoughts and act like they are living some alternate reality.

In other words, despite all the grins, there may be some grim sleepless nights here that aren't talked about.

Certainly all those people showing up in the notices of default are having some bad nights.

Anonymous said...

Maybe 80% are not worried about it. Why should I worry, for I neither work in Real Estate nor have any issues paying my mortgage.

Anonymous said...

The Implosion has already started, and 80% of Bend thinks either it's not happening, and many think that it'll NEVER happen
*

This has been analyzed monthly for the past year and holding fine.

75% think there house is worth what they paid,

50% think its worth more than they paid.

It's just like the definition of recession, which is when you neighbor is unemployed, a depression is when your unemployed.

People simply will not know there house is worth less than they paid until they try to sell, and most will not sell.

The defaults will not kick in for another years, after that there will be 2-3 years of defaults because of MTG resets.

Everyone that wanted to buy a house has bought one, everyone in Bend, Oregon bought two or three. Thus when Bend starts to default, its going to get ugly quick.

Anonymous said...

I never go out for coffee. I prefer to make it at home. I rarely go out to eat, and only if it's good local place or the brewery. Usually, I'd rather drink at home. To be honest, downtown Bend does not matter much to me. I hardly ever go there. I'd prefer nice local businesses to Starbucks and the like, but the end result of Starbucks taking over is I will just go downtown even less than I already do.

Anonymous said...


UGB should have been expanded years ago, land prices should have been managed at some stable inflation adjusted price...

Where? How? We didn't pay for infrastructure during the last 5-10 year building boom.
We can't go north because of farms, or south because of lava, or east because of geology and caves, and we cannot go west because of national-forest.
Pray tell where do we grow?

In the past 5-10 years only $12k per house was paid into the infrastructure pool, while the actual was $50k. Today we're a billion dollars short in terms of correctly servicing that which we have built, given that folks refused to fund yesterday, how in the hell can they fund tomorrow with less money?

Insane speculation is what drove up the the desert land, as it was quite cheap, but because developers didn't have to pay the actual infrastructure cost, any fool could become a developer, and every fool did.

Until we can get the infrastructure updated, and force developers to pay for actual service cost, new development should be frozen.

Anonymous said...

I don't think just because Bend is now relatively expensive we will lose all the diversity. Look at San Francisco for example. There are tons of great hole-in-the-wall burrito joints at prices even cheaper than Super Burrito. How do they do it? Beats me.

Anonymous said...

There are tons of great hole-in-the-wall burrito joints at prices even cheaper than Super Burrito. How do they do it? Beats me.

*

They do it in the fringes like china-town, ... You'll not find a whole in the wall 'pakastani' place in the financial-district, and ALL of BEND is now a HIGH-END ONLY. There are TONS of scuzzy areas in SAN-FRAN, but in BEND there are NO scuzzy areas.

Have it Your Way said...

To be honest, downtown Bend does not matter much to me. I

*

Soon the only store in Bend will be Walmart, the only place to eat red-robin, and the only place to have a coffee starbucks. Still waiting for a national beer joint that can afford to lose money and be on every corner.

Anonymous said...


what's funny, is that much of Bend's Old Guard will ultimately be blown away by WAY Bigger Fish. - ihtbyb


This is the problem is BEND today, Sebastian of Renaissance thinks he owns the place, and then Brogman of Les Schwab. In a town where everything is forsale, every child, every virgin, everything has a price. Its always going to be the guy with the most money is king.

What happened to Government being a gate-keeper? Gone, now its who can pay the most makes the rule's. In this game there will always be a guy coming in with more money, and then more pissed off people. People will be making enemy's quicker than friends.

Bends old guard is already out, today its Brogman, UBS, ... Soon old Paul Allen will come to Bend, like he came to Portland, then everybody will be up in arms.

What do you expect? There are NO rules, everything is for sale, its like a little guy fighting town, where the biggest gun rules. Everyday people die, many hide in fear, some leave. Nothing is long term. ...

Bend is now the land of carpet-baggers, everyone is a carpet bagger, and everyone is trying to screw the other guy.

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

I never go out for coffee. I prefer to make it at home. I rarely go out to eat, and only if it's good local place or the brewery. Usually, I'd rather drink at home. To be honest, downtown Bend does not matter much to me. I hardly ever go there. I'd prefer nice local businesses to Starbucks and the like, but the end result of Starbucks taking over is I will just go downtown even less than I already do.

Dang. That's just eerie. That is me, to a T.

Anonymous said...

>>Maybe 80% are not worried about it. Why should I worry, for I neither work in Real Estate nor have any issues paying my mortgage.

Maybe it's not a big deal to you, but given how few years the median time in a house is, it'll be a lot of people's problem eventually.

It'll matter to businesses who have been depending on people cashing out home equity. Do you know any home furnishings stores that are having a hard time now? I do.

It's no fun to live in a place that goes through a slump. Even if your $ is fine.

Anonymous said...

I make my coffee, too. A big-ass bag of whole beans from Costco lasts a long time.

Anonymous said...

I remember reading on Duncan's blog about how downtown used to have all these boarded up buildings. Now it is all high rent. If the big bust you guys think is coming materializes the way you think it will maybe things will level out in this boom\bust town. Either way I see no reason to think the current state of (mis)affairs is anything more profound than the woes of the past. I refuse to get upset about it.

Anonymous said...

I hardly ever go there. I'd prefer nice local businesses like D&D and the like, but the end result of Walmart taking over is I will just go downtown even less than I already do.

Dang. That's just eerie. That is me, to a Pee. Talking about pee has anyone seen bendbb? Did he get jail time for that fireworks incident?

Anonymous said...

I love my Goldfish, too. A big-ass bag of Goldfish from Costco lasts a long time.

I have 500 cu-ft deep freeze from Costco, and I cycle weekly. Frozen pizza, and frozen waffles.

Who needs downtown? I don't. Just give me a PC and a DSL connection.

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

ATTENTION, my small band of loyal perverts:

I'm going camping for a few days so I'll be back in a few. Everyone continue commenting as usual.

BendBust-Baggins-Bilbo-Bangers: I fully expect long diatribes about how Wal-Mart is taking over downtown, the terms "WRT", "CD", "CMO", "WTF", about 200X, in-depth reporting on why Mexicans kick ass and Whitey sucks ass, and while you're at it, go buy some new aluminum foil to wrap your brain in... cuz dude, they get you when you blink.

Anonymous'ses: I hope you'll keep telling me how my blog is off-topic. That's sweet.

BEM: Come back! We need you!

Anonymous said...

I have a suspicion that its camping season for all, even the bloggers cannot spend all their time indoors.

Time to enjoy Bend outdoors, for what is left of it.

WTF-CDO-IMHO-WRT-CMO-HBO-HOBO

Anonymous said...

Nah there is no greed. Check out this cool infill project. This town doesn't need open space, it needs filler:

http://www.myhregroup.com/portfolio_idetail.php?project_id=103

Anonymous said...

in-depth reporting on why Mexicans kick ass and Whitey sucks ass

*

a.) You want work done you hire a latino.

b.) You want a sexual favors, then you hire a white, and this is only because latino's being good catholics don't engage in white sexual biz.

Case closed, oh yea you want to good cheap meal, find Super Burrito.

What does this have to do with Bend? Latinos are Bends future, they're going to rescue the housing bubble in 3-5 years. The 'noveau riche' retiree's will be engaging in geriatric prostitution. The latinos will do the physical work and prepare the food. The golf courses will go to seed.

Bend will continue to hire all its cops from Sand Point, Idaho. Eventually there will be race riots in Bend when the latinos become a majority and are sick of the Bend establishment.

Anonymous said...

What do you do with "Broken Top Community"? First of all have it be an annual home of the largest GLUTTON fest in the world, being that Bend is the home of the worlds most festivals. Then have Myhre Group Architects draw pretty pictures, and fill the golf course with condo's and let the owners put them in a time-share pool and let everyone get rich. Then have all of downtown become time-share pool offices where 1/1000 share interest are sold for $10k, thereby yielding a cool $10M per unit.

Bend is full of empty land, lets convert it all time to timeshares. Besides when the economy collapses, and the Mexicans are doing the physical work and making the food and Bends geriatric 'noveau rich' are flat-backing, they need to access to 'one hour' rooms for biz. Given that other geriatric tourists will be coming from china,russia to Bend for service.

Myhre Group Architects was responsible for the conceptual architectural design and master planning of this potential infill development in Bend, Oregon. The proposed design is surrounded by the existing Broken Top Community and golf course. It features a new six-story, 208-unit condominium building and 88 townhomes. Among other amenities, the condominium homeowners will have the opportunity to participate in a vacation rental program through the future five-star facility operator. In addition, the proposed design features an underground parking garage, an exclusive clubhouse for Broken Top Club members, a golf pro-shop, indoor and outdoor pools, a spa and wellness center, fitness facilities, multiple restaurants, and banquet facilities.

Anonymous said...

I see no reason to think the current state of (mis)affairs is anything more profound than the woes of the past. I refuse to get upset about it.

*

That is the plan, the early 80's were the good days, and the will return.

We all rejoice in the thought. This site is doesn't fear the bubble we embrace it.

Bend doesn't have a population problem, it has people problem, they'll have to fence in the UGB just to keep people from leaving.

This site is simply about recording the frenzy that led to the bust. No doubt that the bottom will look very similar to the early 80's, the best of times. Once again downtown Bend will have neighborhood hardware stores. There will be burrito joints more common than todays Starbucks.

Bend Economy Man said...

BEM: Come back! We need you!

I'm here, doing more reading than posting lately.

About Super Burrito, yeah, that's too bad. My hope, I guess, looking at the silver lining, is that if Downtown Bend becomes just one cute shop after another, punctuated by banks, upscale bistros and the odd real estate timeshare/resort homesite storefront, that some other part of town will become funky and cool. Downtown Bend is no longer funky or cool (D&D excepted), and it's even a stretch to call it "cute" nowadays.

I've been in Bend since I was a littl'un, so I don't really get too hung up on whether a store gets its lease pulled or moves or what have you.

About Bend RE and the Bend economy, all I can say is that the unwinding of every boom involves Downside Surprises. For real bubble-deniers, everything will be a surprise. For those of us who called the bubble, well, we're not going to be surprised by such stuff as increased foreclosures, subcontractors being stiffed, reduced municipal revenues and so on. But there will be surprises for all of us.

There will be surprises on an individual level, like finding out that the four houses on your block which are renter-occupied (and you've learned to live with that) are all owned by the same busted investor who's now being foreclosed upon. There will be surprises on a neighborhood level, like when the development finally gets told in a hastily-called meeting that the community center, park and pool that were in the brochure won't be built unless the current homeowners kick in thousands of dollars, and it will take a big chunk of change just to fill in the holes already dug. And there will be surprises on a community level, like school budgets getting voted down and enrollment (gasp!) decreasing for the first time in anyone's memory.

And then there are the surprises no one has thought of yet.

Whatever happens, Bend is in for more drastic change. Even those of us who've seen the town we knew changed beyond recognition and feel a guilty twinge of Schaddenfreude when some newcomers agitate for "preserving the character of the neighborhood" are going to have some "uh-oh" moments.

The thing is, Bend 2007 reflects an artificial economic situation that lasted for a mere moment in time, a small fraction of a lifespan. Not only is it turning out that the RE market--nationally--underwent an unsustainable boom that is being painfully unwound, but as things get worse the knee-jerk response will be to NEVER LET THIS HAPPEN AGAIN. Gnaw on the repercussions of that for a minute. Bend's a boom-bust town, OK, we realize that, but at least we could always ride out the bust knowing that another boom would be around the corner.

So anyway, like I said, Bend 2007 reflects an artificial economic situation that lasted a very short period of time, all things considered. The money that poured for a few years from the moneyed, populated, infrastructure-rich, economically diversified parts of the country into underdeveloped "amenity" areas off the beaten path, like Central Oregon, has slowed to a trickle if it hasn't already reversed.

And the biggest Downside Surprise of them all might be that the children of all the amenity migrants, growing up in a weeded-over, struggling, isolated, transient, desperate community, will spend their formative years dreaming of nothing more than Getting Out of Bend and moving somewhere with the jobs and stability and infrastructure and economic diversity that will let them live a life with the amenity all of us need more than winter sports or river-floating: a future.

Pretty depressing, I know. You see why I post less?

Anonymous said...

Super Burrito, We Hardly Knew Ye

Two words for you: Los Jalapenos. The ambiance is similar to Super Burrito and the food is better.

http://www.losjalapenos.biz/

Anonymous said...

Pretty depressing, I know. You see why I post less? - bem

*

You posted more when you were 'calling' the bust, now that the bust is in it first year, depressing?

I find the the daily predictions fascinating, and the denial, and the finger pointing. The turn-around just the around the corner from Real-Estate until most recently, now its nada a word, like RE dropped from the planet.

It's far more interesting now.

On the subject of boom & bust, there will be a recovery in 2-3 years, hell Oregon has had a 20 year non-stop boom, thus we need a -50% or more 2-3 year bust. Will council make booms harder, will mortgage change? I don't think so our amnesia is one generation or less? Look right now the kids of vietnam have now gotten us into a vietnam.

If ALL these beautiful today who run around downtown or golf around down had seen Bend during the timber recession 1983-1986 they wouldn't have even stopped for gas, yet for us locals those were the best of times. They'll return.

If anything during the next boom, we need to make sure the infrastructure gets paid for, that things aren't deferred, one sort got to it in your post, about unfinished parks, but thats just the beginning, there are now traffic problems, sewage problems, and were out of money. Let's hope that amnesia doesn't let us forget about this boom cycle and that all the get rich quick folk, got rich because they didn't have to pay for the infrastructure.

Anonymous said...

http://www.losjalapenos.biz/

*

There is also rigobertos, long-board louie, ... but downtown, a nice little taco shack downtown, that was what super-burrito was about,...

Anonymous said...

IMPEACH BUSH TONIGHT

Yes its symbolic, but when you have no money what else can you do? At least we can see which of these politicians has balls for the changing wind and which don't.

The council meeting starts at 7pm. It will be held at Bend City Hall, located at 710 N.W. Wall Street, Bend, Oregon 97701.

Anonymous said...

http://www.losjalapenos.biz/



First of all its on the Mongolian side of town. Second its a restaurant, not a little $1.50/taco togo shack.

Portland now has roach coaches on every corner on the east-side, they're all run by real mexicans and they're all good.

Why in the hell is bend so behind the times, is it because roach-coaches aren't tourist cute? Hell there are roach-coaches all over redmond and madras on I97.

With all the empty parking lots downtown, why is isn't some entrepreneurial mexican paying 2x for a spot and make a fortune??

Anonymous said...

Not everyone is a one sided narrow minded liberal newspaper editor.

*

Under HBM's watchful eye, our dear city has been taken over by cops from Sand Point, Idaho, aka Mark Fuhrman types.

First the new beautiful people want to ban panhandling, they have already banned dogs from the river. Already the Bend we knew is gone. All the while HBM acts as a cheer leader for the change.

Is it Left or Right? No, its about control, its about controlling other peoples lives. It's about driving everyone out of Bend that doesn't look the same, drive the same car, or wear the same clothes.

Welcome to the HBM world.

Anonymous said...

At least our dogs will be safe from fireworks.

Anonymous said...

[quote]Eastern Oregonians do stick togeather here and they will fight for what they beleave in. The travel management for the national forest has got everyone here all upset, but a proud bunch of people are sticking togeather on the issue and are staying very active in it.[/quote]
________________________

Travel Management Plans are the USFS effort to get a handle on exploding, uncontrolled ORV use and the severe resource damage they cause. (ORVs also tend to displace all other types of outdoor recreation.)

I'm guessing some Baker City residents, who probably don't like the idea of public land much anyway, think they have the right to drive ORVs anywhere they want. No matter how much noise they produce and how much resource damage they cause.

And when the managing agency legitimately tries to tell them that, no, ORVs cause major impacts to the landscape, fish and wildlife and other forest visitors, so they will be limited to trails that are designated open and all other trails are closed to ORVs, they get "upset".

Tough shit, get used to it, you don't own the national forests.

Tell me this- what did all the ORV crowd do before the damn things were invented? Did you all just all stay home? What is the problem with accessing the backcountry under your own power? Are you too fat? Too lazy? Or both?

And just because the motorized recreation industry is building and marketing ever more powerful ORVs, do you think that automatically gives you the right to use them wherever you want?

Think again.

dartagnan said...

I hate Red Robin (and Olive Garden and all the rest of the crappy chain restaurants) too, but people love 'em. I remember how excited Central Oregonians were when the news broke that a Red Robin was coming to town, and Olive Garden still ranks high on any list of businesses most people in Bend want to see come here.

It's a demonstration of the triumph of advertising over quality.

dartagnan said...

"I'm going to Baker City soon, and I actually will turn an eye towards moving there, maybe."

Forget Baker City. Two words: Walla Walla.

Or is that one word twice?

Anonymous said...

What did the ORV crowd do before the things were invented? Ride motorcycles. Motorcycles were and are an efficient, affordable means of transportation, adaptable to all manner of road conditions. As a long-time motorcyclist, I say this: Responsible riding is as low impact as hiking. OK it makes noise - but what works is zoning. Just because some drivers speed, should we ban cars?
I will say, though... I'll ride a quad when my LEGS stop working, and not before.

By the way, beware, equestrians and bicyclists! The hikers will start by kicking out the ATVs, then they will go after the horse people and bicyclists. Have a look at the SF Bay Area to see what I mean.

One last: "look how the kids of Vietnam got us into another Vietnam.: Well, not exactly. Bush had an exit strategy (thanks, Dad!) and so did Cheney (five deferments). Perhaps, if they both HAD fought in Vietnam, they would have hesitated in Iraq. After all, Cheney knew better when he represented Senior.

dartagnan said...

"I latched onto the idea that if there were some sort of RE implosion, that we could revert back to some sort of pre-2003 normalcy ..."

How do we define "normalcy"? Was it the pre-boom Bend of 2002? Was it the Bend of the early '80s, before the last big in-migration began? Was it the Bend of the 1950s, when the mills were all running and a working guy could make a decent living here?

I've lived in Bend for going on 22 years and there has NEVER been a time when people weren't lamenting about the good old days (defined as "the way Bend was when I got here").

Anonymous said...

How do we define "normalcy"?

*

1) Normalcy - AINT walmart owning the whole town

2.) Normalcy - AINT just fancy rich peoples downtown

3.) Normalcy - AINT LA racist cops go after red necks or what ever city-hall tells them to go after this week

4.) Normalcy - AINT shutting down the National Forest to motorcycle use

5.) Normalcy - AINT banning dogs in BEND

6.) NORMALCY - AINT fancy cars and no beat up pickup trucks in bend.

Welcome to the new bend, and it AINT NORMAL

Anonymous said...

"look how the kids of Vietnam got us into another Vietnam." Well, not exactly.

*

By Kids, what was meant was 'THE-PUBLIC', amnesia is short, just a generation ago war was good, the only good a commie a dead commie, now war is good, the only good Arab is a dead Arab.

Today its Hate the War, Love the Oil.

Truthfully its just like Bend, the USA is committed to wiping out all Muslims worldwide, and those that can afford to escape blacks, Puerto-Ricans, mexicans, and Asians are moving to Bend and/or Portland, Oregon. The majority of the USA urban areas are now racially hostile war zones, and its just a matter of time before the USA runs out of Arabs, and starts finding some killing to do at home.

Also given that we now sub-contract prisons, and have more people in prison than any country or place in the history of civilization, you'll soon soon off-shore private prisons for US citizens.


Both Portland & Bend are planned community's for rich people during the next 5-15 year recession-depression. All the new changes in Bend are designed to create a good safe clean place for rich Americans to weather the coming storm.

Given that worldwide that rich people use dogs to for self-defense and property protection, I find it odd that Bend City Council has spent most of its political capital on banning dogs.

Anonymous said...


At least our dogs will be safe from fireworks.


Why because bendbb is in jail? Or because the city has banned them? ( dogs & fireworks ) The beautiful tourists who spend 1/2 billion here every summer hate both.

In one year there will be NO fireworks in Bend, 'illegal fireworks' to NOT be sold, and mere use or possession a $500 fine.

Did you here there is a tin-foil shortage in Bend? All the stores are sold out.

Anonymous said...

Pretty soon you won't be allowed to do anything in Bend, because doing something entails risk. All you'll be able to do legally is sit and watch TV.

Anonymous said...

>>Why because bendbb is in jail?

Is that why I can't log onto his site anymore?

Anonymous said...


Pretty soon you won't be allowed to do anything in Bend, because doing something entails risk.

Tourists bring 1/2 Billion into Bend area July/August. There is NO risk in Bend. There is NO reason to stay in your hotel room. The locals may look dangerous, but truth be said they live in fear of their government.

Anonymous said...

>>Why because bendbb is in jail?

Is that why I can't log onto his site anymore?


The Bend Economy Bulletin Board is hosted by informe.com and they're doing a server upgrade today.

-- BendBB

Anonymous said...

Forget Baker City. Two words: Walla Walla.

*

Actually if you can live on the Oregon side of wally-world cheaper, and yes walla-walla has a huge downtown. Lots of outdoor rec, and close to Wallowas.

Baker is pretty damn sad in the winter, the little hotel, and not much of a ski area. LaGrande ain't too bad either.

Walla-Walla again is good because its a border town, and you can live on the cheap side and shop tax free, and get a job on the busy side. With all the wine biz, they have their yuppy stuff. Lots of sunshine, close to the best parts of Idaho.

Anonymous said...

doing a server upgrade today -- BendBB

*

Come over to the dark side to party today?

Anonymous said...


Pretty soon you won't be allowed to do anything in Bend, because doing something entails risk.


Bend is a tourist town. What is good for the tourists is good for the people of Bend. The tourists are our masters. If the tourists say 'jump' you had better jump.

Daily City Hall figure's out many time-shares have sold the previous day. The primary goal of course is Condo Sales, if time-shares aren't selling, then the people of Bend must be pissing off the tourists. Time to punish those nasty citizens.

There must be something they hold dear that we the city can deny, and thus make their live miserable.

Bend must be pretty and clean. Tourists must not leave without buying their own piece of Bend. Everything in Bend is for sale.

dartagnan said...

"NORMALCY - AINT fancy cars and no beat up pickup trucks in bend."

Hate to sound like Rush Limbaugh, but what I'm hearing here sounds awful like that good old class envy pure and simple.

What's it to ya if somebody else has a "fancy" car? Does it make you feel inferior? You shouldn't let it.

Anonymous said...

Come over to the dark side to party today?

Yes, and I see you've been tormenting my friend H. Bruce Miller over the The Source's Web site.

http://www.tsweekly.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1731

-- BendBB

Anonymous said...

What's it to ya if somebody else has a "fancy" car? Does it make you feel inferior? You shouldn't let it.
*
'Normalcy' in the day was ONLY pickup's, now its ONLY SUV women on cell phones, or contractors on cell phones, or dump-trucks on cell phones.

Welcome to Bend.

bendbutt said...


Not everyone is a one sided narrow minded liberal newspaper editor.
-- H. Bruce Miller
{ My friend H. Bruce Miller over the The Source's Web site. - bendbb }


Under HBM's watchful eye, our dear city has been taken over by cops from Sand Point, Idaho, aka Mark Fuhrman types.

First the new beautiful people want to ban panhandling, they have already banned dogs from the river. Already the Bend we knew is gone. All the while HBM acts as a cheer leader for the change.

Is it Left or Right? No, its about control, its about controlling other peoples lives. It's about driving everyone out of Bend that doesn't look the same, drive the same car, or wear the same clothes.

Welcome to the HBM world. Welcome to the new Bend, Oregon.

Anonymous said...


Hate to sound like Rush Limbaugh, but what I'm hearing here sounds awful like that good old class envy pure and simple.


No you don't because when you speak, you sound just like rushy.

Nobody envy's rushy.

I'm glad that at least there is one person in this town that has the balls to admit they're a rush fan. Folks like to suggest that Bend is liberal, the truth is Bend is one of the most conservative places in the pacific northwest.

The closest thing that Bend has to a liberal is H.Bruce Miller, a bought and paid for clown sponsored by the Bend Chamber of Commerce.

The fact is Bend isn't just about money, its about racism, its about cleanliness, its about everything being the same. It's about the perfect city in every American's mind. A place that you would move to if you won the lottery.

Rodney Dangerfield said...


I see you've been tormenting my friend H. Bruce Miller over the The Source's Web site.
http://www.tsweekly.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1731
-- BendBB


We love to bash the BULL, but everyone is afraid to bash the Source? Why is this? The source is pathetic. They make a joke of everything. Like was published the other day, Aaron the owner is the sponsor of the majority of street closures. These folks pimp the town so carney's can sell corn-dogs to the locals.

The Source is supposed to be an alternative to the BULL, like the post that 'bendbb' linked, the Source makes fun of the fact that teh BULL helped create the bend-bubble, but the fact is the Source was every bit a cheer leader. What's good for Bend Real Estate and Tourism is very good for Aaron aka "The Source".

H.Bruce Miller gets paid less than minimum wage for the four hours per week he spends at the source. This is the town loyal opposition?

Anonymous said...


You better slam your doors, or you’ll end up like Bend.


Matt Bowen presented a petition in opposition to UGB expansion with 317 signatures.
“They’re happy with the town the size it is,” Bowen said. “They’re happy not getting rich. I talked to 20 other towns, and they said ’You’re a mark. You better slam your doors, or you’ll end up like Bend.’”

*

Where was the Source while Bend was being setup like a 'mark'?? The Source was running street fairs 24-7-365 so the tourists never got bored.

Forest Gump said...

"Yet again, Brooks Resources, et. al. does own much of the land the land in the proposed new UGB. I guess money talks."

Why not improve third ave, rather than infilling towards Redmond?

Everyday another rich guy comes to Bend and is the new owner, and yesterdays rich guy is pissed.

Bend is a scam town, a 'mark' itself, and now a perpetual hustlers town.

The people of Bend have no vote that matters, all deals are done secret.

You go to a city council meeting, and the only people who show up, are folks other than "Brook", e.g. folks that are jealous their land didn't get included in UGB. Brooks doesn't have to even speak.

All of Bend is about flipping worthless desert land. Yes, we should be cleaning up Third Ave, but the money to be made is flipping land that cost 0.06 cents an acre, and selling it for $2 million an acre. Improving inner Bend would be little to no profit, and Bend only exists for profit. Huge Profit.

Old Time Bend said...


I've lived in Bend for going on 22 years and there has NEVER been a time when people weren't lamenting about the good old days (defined as "the way Bend was when I got here").


That's just Oregon, everybody heads west from back east, and then eventually moves north. It's been going that way since WWII.
In a truly small town without change ( French Glen ) people just live. Most of us go back to our childhood haunts and everything is gone.

We move frequently, build, and move on, it makes America the richest most mobile place on the earth. It also has made us a land of have's and have-not's. A place with the greatest number of people in prison in the history of the world.

There's hardly an Oregon town you would recognize from twenty, or forty years ago.

The 'good' is generally that what we're comfortable, like heading to the First street rapids in the summer with a six pack, a couple of dogs,... Gone are many a days, is it better now? Normally that which is best gets sold and gated. The things that the old timers held most dearly is always sold first, so that some rich folk can have it all to themselves.

Such is the way Bend is going very quickly. For those that like the new Bend, may I suggest you spend your summer in the Walmart Parking Lot.

Now nobody would think of going down to the river with a six-pack, you have to go to the brewpub and drop a twenty. Nobody would think of bringing a dog to the park, you have to hop in the car and drive 5-10 miles out into the national-forest, with that closure quickly pending.

Again for those that say today is better than yesterday, I say go hang-out at Walmart.

Anonymous said...

I feel superior to people who drive fancy cars as I drive in my cheap car. I never go to Walmart, gated communities seem like jails. I don't need any of those things, even though I could afford some of them. I only buy used cars in cash. I don't even like golf, so Broken Top is a joke. I prefer brewing my own beer to brewpubs and cooking my own food to pricey restaurants. Cars are depreciating assets, fancy restaurants can't cook as well as I can. Spend less and retire early. I can't think of anything more of a pain than being noticed for prosperity,image, or material things. I try to hide those types of things. Feeble minds are predictably easy to impress, adn their esteem is worthless.

Anonymous said...

To Anonamous ATV hater, I really dont think our ATV's do half the damage your big ass housing developements do over there in Bend. For gods sake even the Elk can no longer get to their water sourse, so dont get this eastern Oregonian going on that subject. Further more I can tell by your attitude you are in no way a war veteran nore an Oregonian, so pack it up and go back to the concrete jungle you came from. Buy the way it isnt all about ATV's anyway study before you speak,

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry I failed to mention, I am handicapped, so yes the forest is very important to me since, golf, hiking, bicycling, and horseback riding is very difficult for me. Maybe anonymous ATV hater should think of others, instead of ones self.

Anonymous said...


I really dont think our ATV's do half the damage your big ass housing developements do over there in Bend. For gods sake even the Elk can no longer get to their water sourse, so dont get this eastern Oregonian going on that subject.

It's just like Montana, City Slickers come in from NewYork and they buy the cheap land, and then ban hunting, ban atv's, motorcycle, they talk over the police force just so they can cleanse the city of red-necks.
Bend has completely cutoff the elk paths to the river, the entire river corridor is now surrounded by gated community's and 'exclusive' condo's.
Every once and awhile a red-neck break down a gate at a gated-community and does $25k in damage, as he's pissed to have lost access to a legacy hunting spot near town.
The 'new owners' of Bend are quick as they can filling the Police with out of town ( from LA ) loyal boys, who will answer to them and not locals.
Old timers are running from Bend as quick as they can.
The new Mantra is "Don't treat me a sucker and 'Bend' my town", many Eastern Oregon towns are making citizen agreements to prevent the Bend 'thing' happening to their town.
What is clear at this point, NOBODY gives a shit about Bend, let them fuck-it-up, and screw-it-up BIGTIME. Let them create their paradise on earth for all so see, so that all someone has to say is BEND, and every other city-council in Eastern Oregon will say "NO", the BIG "N"-"OH"
Bend is finished and the all the surrounded area, soon the folks who came to Bend in the last ten years will even realize that its not the town they moved to. They'll move on, who will remain?
In the long term Bend will become a cheap 'Coney Island" theme park. There will be the desert museum, and the elk museum, TONS of Places you can see what was destroyed to build Bend.

Of course all those who write the new history will blame the old timers for the loss of nature, wildlife, and habitat.

At this point all we can do is NOT LET THEM place the blame for what they have done on others, it MUST be clearly known that the greedy builders/developers and citizen council of 2000-2007 are whom destroyed Bend and no one else.

bendover said...


Feeble minds are predictably easy to impress, and their esteem is worthless.


Yes, but why do you post in this forum, if not to impress the feeble?

I personally think its just plain fun to rub their own shit in their nose.

This blogsite is largely about the ride down, and what a ride it will be. Hunger do a strange thing to a man, most are only a hungry week away from cannibalism. The veneer of civilization is very thin. The girl may have destroyed Kong, but Greed destroyed Bend. Soon Fear will replace Greed. Bend will soon be eating their own. I wouldn't miss it for anything, and document all the way down.

Anonymous said...


Have no doubt, Bend, in 10 years, will be mired in economic malaise. That, in itself, would be tolerable. But, bland-ass, monotonous, sterile, checkbox living surrounded by mindless automatons, is not.

Thankfully we have gated community, so that our beautiful 'noveau riche' will be safe from the schmuck.
Where will the riche shop? Will they still enjoy the new Bend? Will they love to be surrounded by mindless automatons?
Certainly the City will have separated the masses of their cash by then with ever increasing citations and service fee's.

Anonymous said...


Probably far more prevalent, are small businesses, like Super Burrito, that lease premises.

Long have I argued the merits of owning your commercial property.
Insanity of the home prices was driven by easy money, now that is over.
With commercial, its REITS, and WALMART, big collective organizations that can drive property costs through the roof, and then the bean counters come in and say "We must triple the rent, to pay our new mortgage".
It's the old story, the rent triples and now the property is vacant, only a pathetic loser would sign a triple-net-lease with 3X ( note a triple net is when you pay property tax, and all costs ).
REITS and WALMART are in business to lose money on these 'investments' they can pull the hypothetical 'rent' out of their ass, and then if it doesn't come its a full write-off as a loss, in hte meantime they can use that loss against the profits in their retail biz for walmart, or carry the loss back to the REIT as a tax shelter.
What does this for the 'super-burrito's' of the world? Nada, time for a roach-coach next to Deschutes Brew Pub, there must be some parking-lot owner downtown who is willing to lease roach-coach spots, or hell, how come Bend has no carts all over the city like portland??

Nobody but the insane is going to eat at the 'deep'.

A small business MUST buy their property when its cheap, during a bust, now we're at the peak, and the REITS have discovered Bend commercial and they're all out bidding one another. This is because the media has said while homes are down in Bend, commercial will continue to sky-rocket. This is crap of course because there will be 100's of empty buildings, eventually the media will report this fact and the REITS will pull the plug on Bend.

WRT walmart, they can buy land, as an investment, and then use the loss to defer taxes, most successful business in America is like McMenamins, they're NOT in the beer business, they're in the real estate business. The diffference is that McMenamins paid CHEAP.

Now everyone is paying too much for Bend commercial, and they're pushing out the ma&pa shops. That's ok, because in time when money comes dear and commercial REIT's must unwind all this commercial property will be sold for penny's on the dollar 3-6 years from now. That's when smart small businessmen should if they can pick it up, so they don't get their rent jacked up on the next boom cycle.

Anonymous said...

I am starting to get a real sense of forbidding doom about Bend. - ihtbyb

*

Cheer up this was all predicted.

Downtown will become a ghost town.

Drive out all the little people, then locals will no longer come downtown.

Then their will only be tourists, who they themselves will sense the vacuum. The tourists will will tell their friends that Bend is sterile and boring. Then in a short time Bend will be empty of life.

Then the REITS that own Bend will start selling the property, and eventually a new $/sq-ft price will be found. What's a fair price in Bend for commercial rent for a 1,000 sq-ft shit-hole? Let's say you sell 100 $5 widgets/day ( burritos,lattes,... pizza-slices ), that's $500, or $15k/mo. Trouble is that's a lucky day, so more likely its 50 sold, thus $250/day ( $7k/mo ). Normal costs would be $1500/mo for rent, TOPS, and note in this hypothetical this is a REAL sucessful biz, to be selling 50 widgets per day. Realistic pricing should be about $1/sq-ft per month.

There's a lot of places that don't sell 50 widgets/day. I agree that .50 sq-ft is about right.

Today its more like $5 sq-ft ASK for downtown BEND commercial, and thus its game-over for a long time for ma&pa business.

Bend is a shoulder economy or tourists are ONLY here during July and August. Thus once the downtown transition is final all of downtown will be a ghost town from Sep to June.

Who is to blame? REIT's mainly, and they're backed by pension money from granny, whom is trying to make 10%. No ordinary mortal would engage in insanity, like having a commercial property set empty for five years, but in the REIT biz, this is a common practice, and now that practice has come to Bend.

Solution, same as always REITS always focus on the same turf, this means that out of favor east-side property is now the place for mortals to buy. Soon, people who eat out frequently will have to drive to the east-side, because that is where the best places to eat will be. That will eventually destroy what we love best about the west-side, walking. Nobody walks across Third Avenue and survives.

Eventually the REITS will take notice of east-side ( five years ), and then dump west-side, then the cycle repeats. Been this way for 20+ years in Oregon.

Anonymous said...

In Bend even the homelesss have to be 'nouveau riche'. Note 'homeless' are the fastest growing Bend area residents. Soon it will cost $10/day to be homeless in Bend, expect pan-handling to skyrocket, and become aggressive.
City Council decision making and marketing Bend as Aspen is working, the 'nouveau riche' are coming to Bend, and Bend is creating their own 'nouveau riche'.

*

Shelter's $5-a-night fee leaves some cold
Others contend that's a bargain
By Sheila G. Miller / The Bulletin
Published: August 03. 2007 5:00AM PST

Rosa Valencia sat outside Bethlehem Inn in Bend on Thursday, hoping that a check she was waiting on would arrive in the mail on Friday. The $75 she is expecting would give her enough money to buy some cigarettes and Pepsi, and it would also allow her to pay her tab at the homeless shelter.

Turns out, nothing in life is free. Not even a night at the local homeless shelter.

The 41-year-old transplant from New York doesn’t mind the $5 fee.

“We get to stay here, we get three meals a day, we get a towel,” she said. “It’s a good deal.”

But owing the shelter money makes her nervous, and she’s looking forward to being out of the red. While Valencia’s tab makes her nervous, it makes other people pretty angry.

With an estimated 1,344 homeless people living in the Central Oregon area, according to a 2006 count by the Homeless Leadership Council, homelessness is a growing issue. The Bethlehem Inn, the only full-service overnight shelter in Central Oregon, charges its guests $5 a night. While it’s not an entirely uncommon practice, it’s also not one that’s well known outside the homeless community, and the practice of paying for emergency shelter rubs some people the wrong way.

The philosophy

Shelters around Oregon have different takes on the “paying client” practice. Many are free and some have limited stays. Others, like the Eugene Mission, allow people to stay for three nights for free. After that, residents must work for two hours to get a bed voucher or pay $2 a night. If someone has a medical condition, their fees are waived.

The Bethlehem Inn runs its program in a similar way. According to Sarah Moore, a case manager for single adults at the shelter, each resident receives a bill at the end of each week that tells them their total amount of debt. No one is turned away, the money is not expected up front and some residents are able to work off their debts by doing odd jobs around the facility.

“Five dollars gets three meals a day and a bed with clean sheets twice a week and a fresh towel every day,” Moore said. “That’s a pretty good bargain.”

Sandra Mears, who took over as executive director at the Bethlehem Inn in April, said that in addition to a warm meal and a roof overhead each night, there are other services that the shelter provides to its clients, like transportation and case management.

Bargain or no, it doesn’t sit well with some.

Michael Stoops, acting executive director at the National Coalition for the Homeless in Washington, D.C., thinks the practice is misguided.

“The common practice is not to charge,” Stoops said. “Three dollars a night is a lot of money. It’s like $100 to you or I. And it forces people to panhandle to get into a shelter.”

Stoops thinks that the money raised from the shelter’s guests could be better directed.

“We believe you should not charge,” Stoops said. “If a client is working or getting a disability check, it makes more sense to require that person to put that money in a savings account, so that when they leave or get kicked out they have money to start over.”

Harvey Giles, a 52-year-old from California who has been in the area for five weeks, is currently staying at a homeless encampment in town. While eating lunch at The Shepherd’s House on Wednesday, he said that while he’s never stayed at the Bethlehem Inn, he knew that it would be hard for him to pay.

“The only way I’d have now is to go out and panhandle, because I don’t have any way of getting a job,” Giles said. “Thirty-five dollars, if I’m in a spot like I am, it does add up. But if I would get a job, 35 bucks a week would be nothing.”

Mears and former Bethlehem Inn executive director Liz Hitt said that charging clients for their nightly stays has a purpose.

“I think we’re giving people the opportunity to contribute and participate in their own life,” Mears said. “This is an emergency shelter. I do not want people to consider this their permanent home.”

Hitt said that the fees went into effect in October 2004, when the shelter stopped being seasonal. She said that the fee started out at $3, with an increase to $4 once a client had been at the shelter for 90 days. The staff determined the system was too complicated and settled on $5 in part because of the ease of adding up the total. Hitt believes that charging a fee not only brought in some revenue but also gave people a sense of pride and responsibility.

“It goes back to accountability,” she said. “Life costs money.”

With about 60 percent of the clients receiving some sort of income, either from work or from Social Security or other benefits, the $35 per week is doable for many of the residents. But it also requires them to make decisions, Mears said, between things like cigarettes and steady housing.

“I think the philosophy really is about a sense of responsibility,” Mears said. “It helps them develop good habits.”

At the end of a person’s stay at the shelter, Mears said, there is often a lot of negotiating.

“If they have an exorbitant bill, you know, we’re not collection agents,” Mears said. “Some of them probably leave and do not pay anything.”

Mears doesn’t think that the fee contributes to panhandling. But Hitt, who said she used to see her clients panhandling on the street, believed some of her clients chose to panhandle to pay the fee.

Still a hard choice

Hitt said that she’d spent a long time with her staff determining whether to institute a fee, and Mears admitted that she had mixed feelings about charging homeless people to stay in the shelter, although she has decided to uphold the rule.

“Honestly, we struggled with it,” Hitt said, but pointed out that the staff had once counted up the outstanding fees and discovered it was around $10,000.

The money that the residents pay to the shelter goes to the van that staff use to pick up and drop off residents at various locations, as well as things like better quality food, Moore said.

“It’s a small revenue stream for us,” she said. “A savvy nonprofit needs to look at an entrepreneurial venture. Otherwise we’d have an outpouring (of money) with nothing coming in.”

Mears said that in the most recent budget she has proposed, which has not been approved yet, the fees provide $60,000 in revenue to the shelter, between 5 and 7 percent of the shelter’s total budget.

“This is a consumer society,” Mears said. “Unfortunately money enters into the equation … it’s unrealistic to think that there are not costs incurred (for the work done at the shelter).”

How to pay the rent

While the money the shelter receives returns to the residents in the form of expanded services, not everyone sees it that way.

Jessica McGillan, a 28-year-old who is five months pregnant and currently living in a motel, said that the most recent time she stayed at the shelter, between January and March, she racked up a $350 tab and was told she couldn’t return until she’d paid half of that amount back.

Hitt said that during her tenure, when someone had a tab of $300 or more, a staff member would meet with the resident to determine a plan or demonstrate what type of progress had been made during the stay. Sometimes, she said, the resident was asked to leave until half of the outstanding tab was paid.

“There were clients who paid on a regular basis and they complained. ‘Why should I pay? They’re not paying,’” she said.

Hitt pointed to a man who stayed at the shelter during her tenure. He picked up cans and paid his $35 each week on time.

“He felt he was capable,” she said.

Kat Reich, who just turned 50 and has lived at the Bethlehem Inn since March, thinks that it’s OK to have the fee, but wishes that it was waived for people who can’t work or who can’t afford to pay it.

Reich works at the front desk and gets paid a night’s lodging for two hours work, which goes toward her daily fees. Right now, Reich is running a negative balance, meaning she’s paid for her nights at the inn through the end of September, when she plans to move out on her own using a Section 8 voucher she was recently awarded.

Before she started working at the front desk, Reich paid her fee out of her Social Security check.

“I support it, but maybe it could be adjusted for certain people, on the ability of being able to pay, or what they’re able to do as far as work,” she said.

Kellie Bergman, 22, and her husband, 37-year-old Clyde Knickerbocker, said they prefer to camp out instead of paying the fee and dealing with the shelter’s rules, which they believe are too harsh.

“I’d rather stay on the street than stay there again,” Bergman said.

For now, Bergman and the rest of the homeless community don’t have a choice. Since the shelter moved from the Deschutes County Work Release Center on Britta Road to its new location on U.S. Highway 97, it has not been accepting new clients because it is still getting its new rooms ready for clients.

According to Jim Gunn, who serves as the outreach coordinator for the Central Oregon Veterans Outreach, there are at least 42 homeless encampments throughout Central Oregon, from south of Bend to outside Sisters.

“Most of the people in the camps can’t be helped by the Bethlehem Inn or don’t want to be there,” Gunn said.

While there has been a rumor circulating that the fees will soon increase to $10, Mears said that is not the case.

For many, though, the current fee is already too much, and it’s keeping them away from the shelter.

“I don’t think there should be one,” McGillan said of the fees. “It’s a homeless shelter. The people who go in there need a break.”

Rosa Valencia sat outside Bethlehem Inn in Bend on Thursday, hoping that a check she was waiting on would arrive in the mail today. The $75 she is expecting would give her enough money to buy some cigarettes and Pepsi, and it would also allow her to pay her tab at the homeless shelter.

Turns out, nothing in life is free. Not even a night at the local homeless shelter.

The 41-year-old transplant from New York doesn’t mind the $5 fee.

“We get to stay here, we get three meals a day, we get a towel,” she said. “It’s a good deal.”

But owing the shelter money makes her nervous, and she’s looking forward to being out of the red. While Valencia’s tab makes her nervous, it makes other people pretty angry.

With an estimated 1,344 homeless people living in Central Oregon, according to a 2006 count by the Homeless Leadership Council, homelessness is a growing issue. The Bethlehem Inn, the only full-service overnight shelter in the region, charges $5 a night. While it’s not an entirely uncommon practice, it’s also not one that’s well known outside the homeless community, and the practice of paying for emergency shelter rubs some people the wrong way.

The philosophy

Shelters around Oregon have different takes on the “paying client” practice. Many are free and some have limited stays. Others, like the Eugene Mission, allow people to stay for three nights for free. After that, residents must work for two hours to get a bed voucher or pay $2 a night. If someone has a medical condition, fees are waived.

The Bethlehem Inn runs its program in a similar way. According to Sarah Moore, a case manager for single adults at the shelter, each resident receives a bill at the end of each week with the total amount of owed. No one is turned away, the money is not expected up front and some residents are able to work off their debts by doing odd jobs around the facility.

“Five dollars gets three meals a day and a bed with clean sheets twice a week and a fresh towel every day,” Moore said. “That’s a pretty good bargain.”

Sandra Mears, who took over as executive director at the Bethlehem Inn in April, said that in addition to a warm meal and a roof overhead each night, the shelter provides other services to its clients, such as transportation and case management.

Bargain or no, it doesn’t sit well with some.

Michael Stoops, acting executive director at the National Coalition for the Homeless in Washington, D.C., thinks the practice is misguided.

“The common practice is not to charge,” Stoops said. “Three dollars a night is a lot of money. It’s like $100 to you or I. And it forces people to panhandle to get into a shelter.”

Stoops thinks that the money raised from the shelter’s guests could be better directed.

“We believe you should not charge,” Stoops said. “If a client is working or getting a disability check, it makes more sense to require that person to put that money in a savings account, so that when they leave or get kicked out they have money to start over.”

Harvey Giles, a 52-year-old from California who has been in the area for five weeks, is currently staying at a homeless encampment in town. While eating lunch at The Shepherd’s House on Wednesday, he said that while he’s never stayed at the Bethlehem Inn, he knew that it would be hard for him to pay.

“The only way I’d have now is to go out and panhandle, because I don’t have any way of getting a job,” Giles said. “Thirty-five dollars, if I’m in a spot like I am, it does add up. But if I would get a job, 35 bucks a week would be nothing.”

Mears and former Bethlehem Inn executive director Liz Hitt said that charging clients for their nightly stays has a purpose.

“I think we’re giving people the opportunity to contribute and participate in their own life,” Mears said. “This is an emergency shelter. I do not want people to consider this their permanent home.”

Hitt said that the fees went into effect in October 2004, when the shelter stopped being seasonal. She said that the fee started out at $3, with an increase to $4 once a client had been at the shelter for 90 days. The staff determined the system was too complicated and settled on $5 in part because of the ease of adding up the total. Hitt believes that charging a fee not only brought in some revenue but also gave people a sense of pride and responsibility.

“It goes back to accountability,” she said. “Life costs money.”

With about 60 percent of the clients receiving some sort of income, either from work or from Social Security or other benefits, the $35 per week is doable for many of the residents. But it also requires them to make decisions, Mears said, between things like cigarettes and steady housing.

“I think the philosophy really is about a sense of responsibility,” Mears said. “It helps them develop good habits.”

At the end of a person’s stay at the shelter, Mears said, there is often a lot of negotiating.

“If they have an exorbitant bill, you know, we’re not collection agents,” Mears said. “Some of them probably leave and do not pay anything.”

Mears doesn’t think that the fee contributes to panhandling. But Hitt, who said she used to see her clients panhandling on the street, believed some of her clients chose to panhandle to pay the fee.

Still a hard choice

Hitt said that she’d spent a long time with her staff determining whether to institute a fee, and Mears admitted that she had mixed feelings about charging homeless people to stay in the shelter, although she has decided to uphold the rule.

“Honestly, we struggled with it,” Hitt said, but pointed out that the staff had once counted up the outstanding fees and discovered it was around $10,000.

The money the residents pay the shelter goes to the van that staff use to pick up and drop off residents at various locations, as well as things like better quality food, Moore said.

“It’s a small revenue stream for us,” she said. “A savvy nonprofit needs to look at an entrepreneurial venture. Otherwise we’d have an outpouring (of money) with nothing coming in.”

Mears said that in the most recent budget she has proposed, which has not been approved yet, the fees provide $60,000 in revenue to the shelter, between 5 and 7 percent of the shelter’s total budget.

“This is a consumer society,” Mears said. “Unfortunately money enters into the equation … it’s unrealistic to think that there are not costs incurred (for the work done at the shelter).”

How to pay the rent

While the money the shelter receives returns to the residents in the form of expanded services, not everyone sees it that way.

Jessica McGillan, a 28-year-old who is five months pregnant and currently living in a motel, said that the most recent time she stayed at the shelter, between January and March, she racked up a $350 tab and was told she couldn’t return until she’d paid half of that amount back.

Hitt said that during her tenure, when someone had a tab of $300 or more, a staff member would meet with the resident to determine a plan or demonstrate what type of progress had been made during the stay. Sometimes, she said, the resident was asked to leave until half of the outstanding tab was paid.

“There were clients who paid on a regular basis and they complained. ‘Why should I pay? They’re not paying,’” she said.

Hitt pointed to a man who stayed at the shelter during her tenure. He picked up cans and paid his $35 each week on time.

“He felt he was capable,” she said.

Kat Reich, who just turned 50 and has lived at the Bethlehem Inn since March, thinks that it’s OK to have the fee, but wishes that it was waived for people who can’t work or who can’t afford to pay it.

Reich works at the front desk and gets paid a night’s lodging for two hours work, which goes toward her daily fees. Right now, Reich is running a negative balance, meaning she’s paid for her nights at the inn through the end of September, when she plans to move out on her own using a Section 8 voucher she was recently awarded.

Before she started working at the front desk, Reich paid her fee out of her Social Security check.

“I support it, but maybe it could be adjusted for certain people, on the ability of being able to pay, or what they’re able to do as far as work,” she said.

Kellie Bergman, 22, and her husband, 37-year-old Clyde Knickerbocker, said they prefer to camp out instead of paying the fee and dealing with the shelter’s rules, which they believe are too harsh.

“I’d rather stay on the street than stay there again,” Bergman said.

For now, Bergman and the rest of the homeless community don’t have a choice. Since the shelter moved from the Deschutes County Work Release Center on Britta Road to its new location on U.S. Highway 97, it has not been accepting new clients because it is still getting its new rooms ready for clients.

According to Jim Gunn, who serves as the outreach coordinator for the Central Oregon Veterans Outreach, there are at least 42 homeless encampments throughout Central Oregon, from south of Bend to outside Sisters.

“Most of the people in the camps can’t be helped by the Bethlehem Inn or don’t want to be there,” Gunn said.

While there has been a rumor circulating that the fees will soon increase to $10, Mears said that is not the case.

For many, though, the current fee is already too much, and it’s keeping them away from the shelter.

“I don’t think there should be one,” McGillan said of the fees. “It’s a homeless shelter. The people who go in there need a break.”

Anonymous said...

This is nice, Tetherow has a new 'event coordintor', sort of like Aaron at the Source, where they spend their time trying to come with with creative past times for tourists.

Can I suggest ...
1.) Throw rocks at the homeless
2.) Find an elk and kill it
3.) Serve food at the Bethlehem Inn
4.) Graffiti @ the old-mill intro and application
5.) Walk the dog on the Deschutes corridor without a leash
6.) Drive endlessly in Bend round-abouts

Heidi Berkman joins Tetherow
by Bend Weekly News Sources
small font medium font large font

Heidi Berkman has been named Marketing & Events Manager of Tetherow, Bend’s new golf resort community. In her new role, Berkman will assist the sales and marketing team and head up future events and customer experience programs.


Heidi Berkman
Berkman previously was the Marketing Director for The Shops at the Old Mill District. She is active in the Bend community, working with the Bend Venture Conference, the City Club of Central Oregon, EDCO, Bend Chamber and Humane Society of Central Oregon.

Tetherow is a 700-acre resort community currently under development on Bend’s West Side. It will include an 18-hole private resort golf course designed by David McLay Kidd, renowned architect of Bandon Dunes and the Seventh course at St. Andrews, Scotland, a members' clubhouse, a luxury hotel and spa, restaurant, meeting space single-family homes, Lodge Homes and Lodge Cabins, and townhomes. For information, visit Tetherow.com or call 541.318.123

Anonymous said...

David McLay Kidd, renowned architect of Bandon Dunes

*

Bend is Bandon, DVA is Bandon, Bandon is the most corrupt town in Oregon, right now after Bend. UBS is bandon/Bend. DVA is the public relations for Bend & Bandon. Goal? To use taxpayer dollars to promote the two areas as being the greatest places to golf on earth.

Want a first class private jet-way for the rich? Just pass the cost to the taxpayer. Whats cute about ALL this Bend&Bandon crap, is that the owners never pay a dime of their own money.

The same people all the way down the list are running the two towns, and passing ALL the costs to the taxpayers.

All deals in the two towns are done in secret.

All city council in the two towns are given life-time golf memberships for free. When in Rome do as the romans, don't fight em, join em.

Golf is the future for everyone.

Golf and Homelessness is like Bend and Bandon.

Today ALL the international investment attention is on Bandon & Bend. Who will be next?

Why did Heidi leave the Old Mill? Condo's aren't selling?

Anonymous said...

To Anonamous ATV hater, I really dont think our ATV's do half the damage your big ass housing developements do over there in Bend. For gods sake even the Elk can no longer get to their water sourse, so dont get this eastern Oregonian going on that subject. Further more I can tell by your attitude you are in no way a war veteran nore an Oregonian, so pack it up and go back to the concrete jungle you came from. Buy the way it isnt all about ATV's anyway study before you speak…I am handicapped, so yes the forest is very important to me since, golf, hiking, bicycling, and horseback riding is very difficult for me. Maybe anonymous ATV hater should think of others, instead of ones self.

FWIW, I don’t live in Bend. I’ve lived in medium sized western towns my entire life and worked in the out of doors for much of it. Even worked in a sawmill for a couple years after high school.

So don’t delude yourself that resistance to ORVs is limited to uninformed city dwellers. The public land agencies have identified uncontrolled ORV use as perhaps the biggest threat to public lands today. A broad array of ranchers, hunters, human-powered recreationists, and others who care about public lands understand that even “responsible” use of ORVs poses a huge threat. ORVs are designed to go off-road. They are marketed to go offroad. I can point you to ads that show ORVs being driven in streams, wet trails, and where there is no trail at all. Ripping around corners with a spray of dirt or water. And you think people are going to use them “responsibly”? What is “responsible use” anyway? ORVs are marketed to be used “irresponsibly”!

The only acceptable place for 40-hp, 4WD, 500 lb vehicles like ORVs is on existing roads. The per capita impact of even one of these vehicles is many times that of a mountain bike or hiker. But ORV users do not like to stay on roads. They do not, and they will not stay there- just look at how ORVs are marketed. The “trails” they create and require are essentially roads, 48-54” wide. No matter how carefully ORVs are driven, they cause vegetation damage, soil compaction, erosion, water quality degradation and pollution. And since there is no possible way to effectively monitor and police ORV use, the amount of “irresponsible” operation is huge.

I won’t try to defend the kind of uncontrolled growth seen in Bend. But housing developments are mostly limited to urban growth boundaries. Uncontrolled ORV use across tens of thousands of square miles of fragile backcountry, streams, rivers and high country is a problem on a different scale. Given that our society doesn’t seem to want to face the inevitable problems associated with population growth and lack of family planning, housing developments are inevitable. Perhaps we could try some green taxes on houses above a certain size. Would you support that? With proper land use laws and zoning, wildlife corridors can (and should) be part of the mix. Do you support strong land use laws and zoning restrictions to minimize impacts on wildlife? I doubt it. In my experience, the typical eastern Oregon solution to population growth and development is to just tell people to go away.

Whether or not I am a war veteran is irrelevant to this discussion. If you use an ORV as a direct result of a disability and you would otherwise not use one, you are in a very small minority. If that is the only way you can access public wildlands, you have a compelling case, about the only one IMO. But the vast majority of ORV users do not share that reason. Allowing people with disabilities to access to the backcountry is frequently cited in defense of ORVs but the number of people for whom this is relevant is very small. Being overweight and/or unfit should not qualify as a disability. I’ve had several orthopedic injuries and surgeries myself that limit my activities some, so I am not just talking out my ass here.

I’m reasonably well versed in what the Travel Management Plans are for. In addition to ORV use, they also address adjacency issues on forest roads, and how far people can drive offroad to camp. But the primary reason by far that the agencies are going through this process is to address rampant, exploding use of ORVs and the rapidly escalating problems they are causing.

I can only imagine what it is like for the agency staff who have to deal with the crowd that thinks that curtailing motorized use on wildlands is somehow “locking them up”.

Regarding zoning approaches to ORV use: Separating incompatible recreation types works OK. In some places, and for now. It is better than nothing. But all types of outdoor recreation are growing. The land base is not. There is an inevitable end to the time zoning different recreation types into different areas will work, as we keep piling more recreationists of all types onto a finite landscape. Motorized use appropriates much more area than just the trail/road where it occurs because the noise is audible over a wide area.

In a just society, one group should not be allowed to appropriate large amounts of a public good (natural quiet) at the expense of other people. Similar to the way society finally acknowledged that air is a public good and curtailed indoor smoking to protect the rights of people who choose not to breath cigarette smoke, society is recognizing that natural quiet and intact wildlands with minimal impacts are public goods and should be protected as well.

ORV users argue that they have “rights” to access their public lands. They do, but these rights are not unlimited, just as the property rights I have with my house are not unlimited. Just because such ever more powerful and technologically advanced ORVs are available and heavily marketed does not mean that land agencies have a responsibility to accommodate them everywhere they are capable of going.

Just because some drivers speed, should we ban cars?

Kind of a straw man analogy here. Reworking society to ban cars is obviously unworkable. We can certainly drive less, and in smaller cars. But most people simply could not function without a car of some type. On the other hand, ORV use is mostly discretionary. Hardly anyone “needs” an ORV, certainly not on public wildlands. As stated above, even “responsible” ORV use involves unsustainable impacts, when you consider how fast the activity is growing, and the number of ORVs on the landscape, the amount of fuel needed to power ORVs and the large trucks used to transport them. Furthermore, policing ORV use to the degree that cars are policed is simply unworkable. The agencies do not have the staff or budgets to effectively oversee the activity. It is largely unregulated and where regulations are in effect they are often ignored.

Anonymous said...

The Travel Management effects everyone beleive it or not. Lets cut off the roads and lets lock out the wood cutters to name just a few, then lets all kick back and watch the forest burn! We could debate forever on this, you never said where you are from just the west, figure that one out. Buy the way US forest land is traded off and sold often. Thats how we get great big golf resorts up in the mountains, so dont kid yourself and beleive that all that land being developed was always private. You are suckering right into the system which tells me you are either very young or from the great concrete jungle. The forest belongs to everyone, even if they are over weight. See your attitude is so typical of the new Bend, as long as everthing works for you who cares about the next guy. As long as you can buy a home, piss on the homeless, as long as you are thin, who cares about the fat guy. That is what is changeing central Oregon, greed and the I come first attitude. Look at me see how pretty I am. And yes the city of Bend screwed up major. Yes in Eastern Oregon we love our freedom and our overweight people too. You blame ATVers for tearing land up, which I seldom see, but its ok to rape that beautiful river there in Bend of all its nature beauty, beleive me that river will waste away long before atvers can destroy the forest. Just take a look at it sad huh? Now lets see how fast Dischutes County can forever change and distroy another beautiful river, bet it will be faster than me on an ATV distroying public land.

Bend Economy Man said...

I'm a little hurt, Paul, that you asked me to post, and I did in a heartfelt manner, and no response. Give a brother some love.

Anonymous said...


I'm a little hurt, Paul, that you asked me to post, and I did in a heartfelt manner, and no response. Give a brother some love.

Paul isn't back yet is he?

This ATV hater, there's not a one in this bunch we're all red-necks. I really think that mr-cant-spell misinterpreted something here. I have a google of my own atvs, 2-strokes, 4-strokes,...

I think that 99% of the people on the blogsite are all for hunting, fishing, beer drinking, ... It's the golf set that hates ATV's, but loves their golf-cart! Go figure?

What was said here to get mr-cant-spell so riled up? I cannot find it??

p.s. spilling is not a problom here, its just that everyun has to have a handle

Anonymous said...

The issue on ATV and OHV in general here in yuppy Bend, is that we're losing riding area quick, going, going, gone, which means more people will be using a smaller area, which means that area gets torn to shit.

Then the anti's run out and say look at what they did to there area... It's all torn up, ... and this is how they play the game,

Same with dogs, twenty years ago you could take your dog anywhere in the snow, now everyone has to go to Edison, too many dogs and the place is full of shit, and the anti-dog people say "look what the they do".

In the 'old bend' we had diversified use, of ALL REC toys, and NO area was over-used.

Today, everyone will be required to use a little area that will get torn to shit, welcome to the NEW BEND.

I say soon that Golf-Courses might not be that nice of a place to hide from Red Necks.

Anonymous said...

The goal here is to debate the Bend Bubble.

We'll never fix the ATV problem.

We'll never stop the closures.

For pro atv people your screwed because in five years the only riding area will be a 5 sq-miles east of millican.

For anti atv people your screwed because in five years, the city will have sold something you love.

Your all fucked.

bendbuster said...

Yup, soon you will not be able to get any money for MTG. American MTG went down yesterday for three months they said every thing is good. MTG companys are dropping like flys in a Raid factory.

Soon nobody in Bend will able to sell except to cash buyers, there will be NO refinance.

Nobody wants to give money to the MTG-BOND market. It's game-over.

The greatest recession since the great-depression has started.

*


Reuters
Bond turmoil worse than Internet bubble: Bear CFO
Friday August 3, 2:50 pm ET

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bond market turmoil sending investors fleeing from risk may be a worse predicament than the 1980s stock market fall and Internet bubble burst, Bear Stearns Chief Financial Officer Sam Molinaro said on Friday.

"These times are pretty significant in the fixed income market," Molinaro said on a conference call with analysts. "It's as been as bad as I've seen it in 22 years. The fixed income market environment we've seen in the last eight weeks has been pretty extreme."

"So, yes, we would make that comparison" to market events that also include the debt crisis of the late 1990s, he said.

Mr. Reality said...


The only acceptable place for 40-hp, 4WD, 500 lb vehicles like ORVs is on existing roads. The per capita impact of even one of these vehicles is many times that of a mountain bike or hiker. But ORV users do not like to stay on roads. They do not, and they will not stay there- just look at how ORVs are marketed. The “trails” they create and require are essentially roads, 48-54” wide.


Paul,

Where are these atv's, I have a few I use to log and farm, purely tools for large capacity hauling and work.

I'm out in the wood everyday on mtn-bikes and 2-3 times a week on moto-cross bikes, and several times a week jeeping out towards China-Hat.

I have seen VERY-VERY few atv's in my journey's. Sunriver has a tour group operating west of them that run out toward Edison. Out towards Millican I see a few wondering around. Honestly the most ATV's to be seen are at the coast.

Regarding your suggestion, NO ATV can be used on a road, they don't have limited slip differentials, and its illegal to use them on road, and tightly packed gravel is dangerous.

Personally I prefer to use them slowly for hauling a chain-saw in a basket with fuel and getting work done.

Yes, if they fall on you your in a world of hurt.

There are a lot of overweight people, and they don't have the skill for a motorcycle, thus the atv like the snow-mobile is a niche sport so people can get out. The jeeps they make these days suck as you know.

In summary somebody tell me where this ATV problem is in the Bend area, because I'm out there ALL the time and I haven't seen, and note what I have said, I ONLY ATV on private property for work.

Anonymous said...

Below is extremely interesting, especially second paragraph, about what's going on in the builders-world.

Go to the site and vote, and vote frequently.

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=NCkBOAp4i_2f_2bTgjeJ89r5PA_3d_3d

http://www.builderonline.com/industry-news.asp?sectionID=26&articleID=548360
1.


*
1. Who bears the biggest responsibility for the mortgage meltdown?
A) Lenders
B) Builders
C) Homebuyers
D) State and Federal Regulators

*
Results will be revealed next week.

*

Last week's results:

Of these, which is the most common objection you hear from prospective buyers?

A. I can't sell my house. 53.3%

B. I'm waiting for the prices to go down. 20.0%

C. I can't afford it. 13.3%

D. I can't get financing. 13.3%

E. Other builders are offering big discounts or incentives and you're not. 6.7%

Anonymous said...

What are the builder's hearing??

*

Last week's results:

Of these, which is the most common objection you hear from prospective buyers?

A. I can't sell my house. 53.3%

B. I'm waiting for the prices to go down. 20.0%

C. I can't afford it. 13.3%

D. I can't get financing. 13.3%

E. Other builders are offering big discounts or incentives and you're not. 6.7%

Anonymous said...

Wells Fargo raised it's 30yr fixed rate jumbo from 6.875% to 8%. In one week. Now that's jumbo indeed.

These guys don't want to give you money any more. They'll just keep running the rate up (even if the treasuries go lower) as they need to to place the loans that no one wants any more. At 10% will the hedgies and pensions want your loan? Maybe? Maybe not.

Anonymous said...

Wells Fargo raised it's 30yr fixed rate jumbo from 6.875% to 8%. In one week. Now that's jumbo indeed.
*
Yeh, and last time I mentioned 'JUMBO' nobody knew what the hell was being discussed, so here we go ...

A jumbo is any loan over $350k, which is ANY loan in Bend, now how do you spell refi? How do you spell reset?

Hold on for the ride, a whole lot of Bend RE isn't going to be JUMBO soon, its going to be mimbo-jimbo-jambo ( swahili for real small )

bendbuster said...


At 10% will the hedgies and pensions want your loan? Maybe? Maybe not.


Let's play the rhetorical game. Stuff that 'was' rated AAA, is now worthless, that's a 100% loss of principal.

How do you rate a new loan? What should the risk-reward be? What is a good risk?

Take American-Mtg this week for THREE MONTHS they said, we're fine, we're like gold ... Guess what yesterday belly-up.

Right now, and until the luv-guv dubya steps in to INSUR MTGS, there is NO safe return for investor's.

Game-Over RE implosion is here.

bentbust said...

NOT since the great depression has USA gubmint had to GUARANTEE MTG's.

This is the ONLY thing that will now put humpty-dumpty back together again,

Problem is all the shitheads want to get bailed out, NOT going to happend, thus the new legislation will take years, until then CASH ONLY ON RE.

Get over it,

Anonymous said...

THIS*IS*YOUR*FUTURE, BENDITES.
http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/07_33/b4046601.htm

Anonymous said...

Why would people know "jumbo?" People were signing loans that they didn't even KNOW were ARMs!

I bet there are untold thousands of people out there that don't even know their mortgage payment is going to reset.

--TT

Anonymous said...

I was down at 'first friday' tonight walking around, doing the hobo in paradise thing.

I over heard six times the following conversation "I moved here 2004, and I have friends that moved here way back in 2002, and they say the town has changed, it just ain't the same..."

Holy shit, folks bought into the the myth of Bend that Never-Was, what does the rest of Eastern Oregon call Bend "The Mark", shit that means all these good people that have moved here since 2002 have been taken for a ride.

I seriously think there are going to be some quality of life lawsuits, shit a lot of these middle age HO's sipping wine have lawyer hubby's ... Who will the sue?

I say that Bend is going to get VERY interesting.

bentbust said...

A diverse cast of characters combined to launch the once-in-a-lifetime housing boom of the past five years. Traditional mortgage companies and banks unleashed a barrage of loans, many to borrowers with iffy credit histories who didn't bother to read the fine print about upwardly mobile interest rates. Wall Street egged on the often-reckless underwriting by buying vast quantities of home loans for repackaging as securities. Now that the boom has fizzled and foreclosure rates are rising, the important role of large homebuilders as lenders is also coming into sharper focus.

****

TT-For six long months I said that Wall Street and MTG would be the end of MTG as we knew.
Yes I fully concur, this is Bend, Atlanta leads the nation, because they're the MOST efficient at foreclosure, Oregon is the LEAST efficient so the pain will continue here for 2-3 years from NOW.

Anonymous said...

Sheer overbuilding, a symptom of every housing bubble, is the most obvious explanation for the new ghost towns sprinkled around the country.

*

Are we talking Tetherow, Broken-Top, Highlands, Shevlin, ... This could be Bend? The MOST over-valued in the nation.

Anonymous said...

>>TT-For six long months I said that Wall Street and MTG would be the end of MTG as we knew.

Yes, I know you did. I listen to what everyone says.

I give you credit on the MTG call. The financial press I read (WSJ, FT, Economist) was talking about it. But as I said, every time someone asked "how long can this go on before it breaks? Can't be much longer." it was paired with some other guy saying, "Are you kidding there's endless worldwide liquidity to sop these up." I'm convinced that people go looking for what they want to hear. Confirmation bias.

--TT

bentbuster said...

I know, but this having Wall Street finance MTG was all new, and this letting people who make $7/hr buy a $500k house was all new, ...

Then you have Bend where people who make $7/hr were allowed to buy 2-3 homes,...

Then you have builder's who 'financed' their shacks themselves with other-peoples-money. It was all going to crash hard.

Laslty, WRT wsj,forbes,economist, ... I know I read them all too, but the thing is its a commission industry, everybody is-was going for the ride making money. Nobody wanted to say the emperor had no clothes. There may have been a rare pundit, but generally they were humiliated quickly.

100's of 100's of Trillions have been flipped in the past ten years on LBO-CDO-BONDS, and all the time generating Billions of dollars in commission. Everyone has been making money.

Now its time for the lawyers to make money.

bentbuster said...

"Are you kidding there's endless worldwide liquidity to sop these up." I'm convinced that people go looking for what they want to hear. Confirmation bias.
*
The thing with ALL this whether its a WALMART REIT buying the land under super-burrito, or BEND becoming cali, its ALL driven by pension money.
Granny and Granpa have it ALL tied up in stocks and bonds, and quickly all these 'assets' are becoming worthless.

Why would anyone buy a Bond that is back by RE knowing that its true value is penny's on the dollar? The meaning of 'AAA' means nothing. It take three months to withdrawl from a hedge fund, and right now most funds are just buying time like American Mortgage that went belly-up yesterday. They lied and lied, and deferred. Nobody can unwind because the underlying assets are penny's on the dollar.

Most pension funds have a fiduciary responsibility to NOT invest over 5% into risky investments, but 'AAA' is-was NOT risk, well it turns out it was 100% risk, nobody knows the bottom on this.

But one thing is CERTAIN, the granny's and grandpa's that didn't lose their money, are going to put cash back in the mattress, because what your seeing right now is a 'bank holiday' ( refusal to withdrawl ) not seen since the great depression. In the 1920's people kept their money in banks, today they keep their money in funds, and the funds right now are having a 'fund holiday' gradually as the funds 90 days expire for demand of withdrawal, those that cannot get cash to cover, have to close.

Over the next six months tons of grannys and grandpas will lose their life savings. Nobody is going to get bailed-out.

Nobody is going to loan to the RE bond biz, the government will have to step into to guarantee home loans, and screen. It's going to take a long time to put humpty-dumpty back together again.

Endless liquidity is when the government endlessly prints paper, or today extends electronic credit. The fact is when you buy something, and 90 days later its has no value, people tend to quit buying that object. That object is BONDS.

I think that granny&grandpa shouldn't get bailed-out, because they should have known there was no guaranteed 10% on your money. Its all about greed. There are many people who have only been getting 2% on treasurys, and they'll not lose a dime.

Unlimited liquidity came from the baby-boomers and there unlimited desire to live the retired life on interest. Too many people played the game, and now the whole game has collapsed.

Now its all back to basics. Which means - cash, bullets, bread, guns, shelter, gold, silver, canned-food.

I do think we might start seeing granny go live with the kids, at least the kids have an apartment, granny's got nothing.

The real issue here is that NOBODY is going to be buying CDO-CMO-RE-BONDS, which means that RE finance is going to be near zero. Which means that nobody can buy, and nobody can sell. Which means CASH is KING.

Which means buying homes 10% or less on the dollar for cash.

Anonymous said...

>>I think that granny&grandpa shouldn't get bailed-out

Is a bailout even feasible? Isn't this one just too big? For this one, you'd have to tax people as much as you were giving them, which is a wealth redistribution from young people to old people.

Or, inflate your way out, which is just a rather arbitrary wealth distribution from careful people to less-careful ("greedy") people.

There's no "magic" place to go get the replacement money for the evaporated wealth.

--TT

bentbusthead said...

TT, I think that most agree it wasn't the depression that caused the great-depression, it was the government reaction. This is what people are afraid of, certainly the bubble was caused by insane speculation, and thus a government reaction would be insane promises backed up by new insane laws.

Let's hope that this just slowly unravels over the next 2-3 years, and that government doesn't try to fix the problem.

The problem, is and always was regulation, $7/hr people shouldn't have been allowed to by $500k shevlin mini-me mansions. Somebody in the food chain should have said that this isn't 'AAA' it didn't happen because EVERYONE was getting 'rich'.

It's just like UGB in Bend, there is great state law, but nobody gives a shit, law only works, when there is an Attorney-General that is active. More laws will never fix a problem, only diligence in the first place.

The past 5-10 years have all been about shit eating denial DUBYA, TEFLON, ... Clinton, a fish rots from the head down. US people deserve their government, and the rest of the world is dumping dollars. Which means that we're going to have 20% interest very-very soon, in order to make the dollar once again valuable to foreigners.

bentbutthead said...

Good News, Wall Street adivors are now telling the public to dump RE, MTG, REIT's, ... This means that ALL flipping of BEND commercial is going to come to a grinding halt. It's game-over for easy money to kick out little super-burrito.
***
Step 1
Separate the Wheat From the Chaff!

Start by shedding the weakest sectors and assets we've been warning you about all along:

* Home builders,

* Mortgage lenders,

* Investment real estate,

* Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs),

* Most banks, insurers and brokerage firms, and

* Companies that depend most heavily on the above.

Meanwhile, the fundamental outlook has continued to improve for the strong areas we've been highlighting …

* Foreign currencies, making new multi-decade highs, regardless of global stock markets,

* Oil, as prices approach their all-time high,

* Gold, likely to follow surging oil and foreign currencies, despite short-term setbacks, and

* Other resources, driven by the continuing rapid growth of the world's most populous nations.

Anonymous said...

There's no "magic" place to go get the replacement money for the evaporated wealth.

--TT

*

In bailouts, the actual outcome is a lot like Katrina, what you actually get back, is not what you had.

Folks in Katrina got bailed out by DUBYA, and what they got was a single-wide in Texas, and what they had was a plantation estate.

The problem with bailouts, even small is that stupid people aren't punished, and thus those who only got 2% and weren't greedy have to pay for the morons. The problem with this that other good people say "What the Fuck", pretty soon everybody is sucking everyones tit.

Besides even during the great depression only 25% were in real pain, 50% still got by, and we all know that the USA needs some pain, with all the political correctness, its time to understand the the USA is not the king of the world. That white folk aren't special, it would be good for the USA people to feel the pain that they have created all over the world.

Anonymous said...

Up until about a week ago, I was hearing that commercial property was still strong. Now, all of the sudden, everyone seems to agree it should be dumped.

Funny how forward-looking analysts are, huh?

Hey analyst, that's not the windshield you're looking through, that's the rear-view mirror.

---

In Bend there are still people saying, "yeah, the housing is shit, but thank god I work in commercial." How many more weeks do those guys sleep comfortably without Lunesta?

--TT

Anonymous said...

>>The problem, is and always was regulation, $7/hr people shouldn't have been allowed to by $500k shevlin mini-me mansions.

People may have wondered how on earth the lenders thought it was a good idea to have low-doc and no-doc loans.

Well, it WAS a good idea for the lender. They wanted all the business they could get, because they passed the risk along and made money no matter what.

And the low- and no-doc just put the blame on the borrower. "Hey, the fucker said he was a self-employed consultant making 80k."

-TT

Anonymous said...

What should put fear in the sellers of Bend houses is that rates on Jumbos have gone up the last two weeks as treasuries have come down.

Watch now as houses over $500k come down, cramming the market currently occupied by the $350-$450k houses, which have to drop to get out of the way.

Anonymous said...

http://money.cnn.com/news/newsfeeds/articles/djhighlights/200708031545DOWJONESDJONLINE000825.htm

"A broker at Ace Mortgage Funding LLC, a leading mortgage brokerage firm, estimated on Friday that 90% of these so-called non-conforming home loans have disappeared in the past three days, leaving home buyers with far fewer options. The broker declined to be identified because they didn't want to be seen as exacerbating housing market problems."

"Mike Perry, chief executive of mortgage lender IndyMac Bancorp (IMB) said on Thursday that he got a phone call this week from U.S. Sen. Christopher Dodd, D- Conn., who asked whether Congress can help the U.S. mortgage industry in any way."

Anonymous said...

That URL was too long for blogger, but if you triple-click on it and then press Ctrl-C, you'll be able to copy it to paste into your browser's address bar.

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

I'm Back!

Is Bend still a crappy RE market? Is Bilbo-Bust-Baggins still long winded? Is BendBB still giving me hell? Is BEM alive?

Sorry, it's just hard to tell what's real anymore... been in John Day for 4 days, and it seems to be surrounded by some sort of time vortex where everybody living about 30 years in the past. Ain't all bad... just disconcerting when you come back to reality.

I'll have to shower, and read up this weekend....

And yes... I saw ya BEM, but I left town right at that minute!

Anonymous said...

Welcome back greatly esteemed one. Interesting stuff happening. Stock market tanked yesterday on concerns about mortgages and credit markets. According to timmy toes, wells fargo raised the rate on jumbo 30 yrs to 8 %. Also , Jim Cramer advised on national tv, that if you have a mortgage going toxic , you should walk away from the house. There are some good posts about his recent rants on housingpanic.blogspot.com. Good stuff.

net nanny said...

Is Bilbo-Bust-Baggins still long winded?

*

Who write longer shit? Bem, IHTbyb, or bentbust?

Anonymous said...

I'm Back!

*

It was terrible having you gone, days on end looking at old cars at Drake Park. Nothing to do but fish, swim, ride bikes, ... Now we can get back to our keyboards.

Please IHTBYB never leave again.

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

I'm surprised no one (seemed) to comment on Doug Farmers July numbers

July 07

Listings Sold: 116
% of Inventory Sold: 5.01%
Listings Expired: 92
Avg Square Footage: 2027
Avg Days on the Mkt: 170
Avg Sale Price: $ 438,465.
Median Sales Price: $ 347,500.
Active Listings July 31: 2,361


YoY comparison:

Jly 06

Listings Sold: 174
Avg Square Footage: 2034
Avg Days on the Mkt: 129
Avg Sale Price: $ 449,310.
Active Listings July 31st: 1797


MoM comparison:

June 07

Listings Sold: 165
% of Inventory Sold: 7.69%
Listings Expired: 84
Avg Square Footage: 1989
Avg Days on the Mkt: 157
Avg Sale Price: $ 418,017.
Median Sales Price: $ 345,000.
Active Listings June 30: 2314


YES, THAT IS 20.35 MONTHS OF INVENTORY! 20.35 MONTHS!

I had to check that several times, cuz I couldn't believe it. I mean in the heat of the Savior Summer that was going to pull Bends RE ass out of the fire, we are not only in the fire, we're burning alive.

Is it possible we will have 2 YEARS of home inventory by Fall or Winter? I joked about it in past posts, but now it looks totally possible.

116 homes sold in JULY! My God, this thing is imploding.

Over 20 months of inventory!

Unbelievable!

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

I noticed that the number of homes is VERY roughly equal to the number of Realtors in this area, which means that these people are pulling down roughly 1 commish every 20 months. On a $400K AVG home, that's $24K, split 4 ways: buyer broker, seller broker and the respective franchises.

$6K every 20 months? This can't last.

Add another Paul-Doh prediction: One of the big Old Mill franchises will close down their extravagant facilities. No way can they pay the lease on those buildings with revenues at these levels.

NO WAY.

Anonymous said...

>>$6K every 20 months? This can't last.

And what are nervous sellers asking Realtors to do? Run tons of 4-color ads and sit in Open Houses all weekend. Pick up the Bulletin any Saturday and it's pretty clear that someone is still making money--The Bulletin.

--TT

Anonymous said...

In fact, I'd say the slump is GOOD for the Bulletin. Just means Realtors have to advertise more.

IHateToBurstYourBubble said...

There will be surprises on an individual level, like finding out that the four houses on your block which are renter-occupied (and you've learned to live with that) are all owned by the same busted investor who's now being foreclosed upon.

Yup, that's where I'm at.

What's funny is how markets are pretty good at discounting news, that The Market should have no Earthly right to know. Look at the slide in World markets in the days leading to 9/11. I don't want to sound like a conspiracy theorist, but that sort of slide is statistically very unlikely just prior to "unexpected" events, like 9/11.

There will be little surprises on the way down all over the US, but especially Bend. Tons of "below spec" homes, all sorts of fraud deals. What's funny is that this happens all the time... people just get real pissed when conditions deteriorate & they try to sue their way out.

The Bulletin will make money... so will the jackals... err lawyers.

Anonymous said...

HILARIOUS Bend Bulletin front page story on housing today. Just a riot. David Foster, where do you get this stuff? FUNNY! Comedy Central for you, buddy.

--TT

dartagnan said...

LOL! The Bullshittin finally acknowledges there's a slump ... only to immediately turn around and assure us the slump will soon be over!

A couple weeks ago Costa wrote a column about how the local realtors were ragging on him for "negative" reporting. I guess their message sunk in.

As an accurate and objective news source, The Bullshittin is a bad joke.

Anonymous said...

Yes, this is what I have been saying for a year, 3-5 years, we're now in year one, and the for the first time ever the BULL gives us a history lesson.

The timber crash started in 1983, and even here they're saying 1988 for recovery, that's five years, note the title says it will be a quick correction, but for resets and foreclosures, hungry realtors, mtg, commercial, ... the whole bend biz of events, its going to be a long cold five years.


If history proves a guide, housing slump won’t last
By David Fisher / The Bulletin
Published: August 05. 2007 5:00AM


A few years ago, Krishan Tinney was stuck in traffic — again — on her grinding commute from Los Angeles to Ventura County. So she called a friend in Bend to kill some time.

“What are you doing?” Tinney asked.

“Oh, I just got off work,” her friend said. “Thought I’d walk down to the river and float for a while.”

It was 4 o’clock on a Thursday afternoon.

A few months later, Tinney and her husband, an engineer, ditched Southern California, moved to Bend and bought a house — something that was way beyond their means in SoCal’s heady housing market. Since then, he has recruited friends to join him at Columbia Aircraft Manufacturing Corp. Her parents have moved here, too.

The Tinneys sold their first house a few months ago and moved into a bigger, brand-new one in south Bend’s Renaissance Ridge subdivision.

“We could never have done this in Ventura County,” Tinney said, plucking a few weeds from her tiny new lawn last week as she got ready to take her young daughter swimming. “We feel very fortunate. We love it here.”

Drawn by the lure of relatively affordable housing through the years, the low-key, small-city atmosphere and the stunning natural beauty of Central Ore­gon, Tinney and thousands of newcomers like her have rained a remarkable streak of good fortune on Bend’s housing market.

Since 1988 — the year the city pulled out of its last major real estate slump — the average price of a Bend home has shot up an average of 11.3 percent per year, according to Central Oregon Multiple Listing Service numbers, dwarfing the 4.8 percent average annual gain in the nation’s average home price during that period and rivaling the

12 percent average annual return of the S&P 500 stock index.

Even ignoring the unsustainable growth rates of the boom years of 2004-06, the city’s real estate gains have been impressive.

The average price of Bend houses gained an average of

10 percent per year from 1988 to 2003, according MLS numbers, while prices nationally climbed only about 4.2 percent per year.

Of course, the numbers are rough. Some of Bend’s average price gains have come more from increases in the construction of super-expensive homes than from the price appreciation of individual houses. Still, it’s clear that the local housing economy hasn’t experienced anything like a drawdown in nearly a generation.

Until, possibly, this year.

The inventory of unsold homes in the Bend market has swelled to record numbers this year, while sales levels for the first six month of the year have fallen back to levels not seen since 2003.

The traditional underlying drivers of the local housing market are likely still there, University of Oregon economist Tim Duy said Thursday. Newcomers are still attracted to Central Oregon’s natural beauty and, even at today’s prices, average housing prices here remain lower than they are in neighboring California and in other high-priced regions along the nation’s gold coasts.

But working off all of those unsold houses might bring some pain, Duy said. The only question is how much and for how long.

“I’ve got to think that the world is not falling apart here,” Duy said. “But prices are going to have to come down to get rid of whatever excess inventory has built up.”

Rough past

Bend’s prices have appreciated so much during the past 20 years, Duy noted, partly because they started so low.

The real estate economy here was in rough shape as the 1970s faded into the ’80s, Brooks Resources Corp. CEO Mike Hollern recalled recently.

A housing boom in the late 1970s attracted a stream of new contractors to town and filled neighborhoods with new housing, Hollern said, but the optimism didn’t last long. Interest rates spiked in the early 1980s as the Federal Reserve Board launched an aggressive battle against inflation, sending average mortgage rates soaring from the 9.25 percent average of 1978 to a peak of nearly 15 percent in 1982.

That, combined with an employment crunch in the wood products industry, hit Bend’s economy hard, Hollern said. Downtown shops closed and boarded their windows. Contractors pulled up stakes and left town.

Don Kelleher, now a longtime real estate agent, was in a retail business at the time, trying to make ends meet while paying 19 percent interest on inventory loans. His wife, a real estate agent at the time, closed deals that required the sellers to bring money to the table because the sales prices of their homes could no longer pay off their mortgages.

From the exuberance of the 1970s, confidence plunged to an all-time low.

“There was a time when we would hear about a housing start — just one house, not a subdivision — and everybody would drive by to see who the hell was building a house,” Hollern said. “Whoever it is must be crazy.”

It took the local housing market years to recover.

From 1983 — the earliest year for which the Central Oregon Multiple Listing Service has reliable numbers — through 1985, the average price of a Bend home fell more than 8 percent, from $54,521 to $50,144. Prices staged a brief rally in 1986 as mortgage interest rates dropped back below the 10 percent mark again. But 1987 brought another 2.8 percent slide, and the average price of a Bend house — which amounted to only about $54,000 that year — was less than half the national average.

Weakness in the housing market was mirrored by sluggishness in other market sectors, Hollern said.

Brooks Resources — formed in 1968 as the real estate arm of the old Brooks-Scanlon lumber company — started Shevlin Center, which today is a thriving hub of office buildings and industrial plants on the west side of the Deschutes River along Colorado Avenue, in the early 1980s. But nothing happened for years, even though Brooks and the city poured thousands of dollars into the Colorado Avenue bridge and other improvements.

Awbrey Butte also stood virtually empty through the first half of the ’80s, Hollern said, even though Brooks bought it in 1970 and master planned it a few years later.

Still, the city was beginning to sprout some of the seeds of its future growth. Developments like the High Desert Museum, along with a trickle of new concert series, new restaurants and new shops increased the city’s attractiveness while the Sunriver Resort, founded by investor John Gray in the mid-1960s, and Black Butte Ranch, founded by Brooks Resources in 1970, exposed the area to a steady stream of tourists from the cities of California and the Pacific Northwest.

Developments like the new St. Charles Medical Center, meanwhile, increased the city’s service level and formed the nexus for a growing employment base, Hollern noted. But the key to the city’s growth through the 1990s and beyond proved to be its attractiveness to retirees and young, skilled urban workers who brought pre-existing wealth or, in some cases, their own jobs with them when they moved to the High Desert.

“We have become,” Hollern said, “a poster child for the non-placebound economy.”

From close to the bottom of Oregon’s 36 counties in terms of household income in the early years of the 1990s, Deschutes County has climbed to among the highest in the state, Hollern noted. Still, storm clouds have gathered again around its housing market.

Speculative bubble

From 2004 through 2006, the smooth, upward-trending curve that maps Bend’s historical housing prices takes a sudden jump upward.

Fueled by cheap mortgage rates and intense investor interest, the average price of Bend’s housing shot up 24 percent per year in that span, giving the city a prominent spot on national rankings of overpriced housing markets.

Whether that’s fair or not is debatable. Most relative price rankings — including a quarterly report generated by Global Insight and National City Mortgage that pegged Bend at or near the top of its list for more than a year — attempt to measure the degree of an area’s “overpriced” condition by comparing home prices to prevailing local wages, leaving investment income, self-employed income and other common sources of Bend household wealth out of the equation.

Still, there’s no doubt that home prices have broken beyond the city’s established trend line, said Duy, who tracks a collection of local economic data to produce a quarterly Central Oregon economic index for The Bulletin. The question now is, where does it go from here?

Some factors, like the city’s continuing attractiveness to wealthy newcomers, are likely to continue to drive growth for years to come, Duy said. But other shorter-term factors, like the oversupply of houses for sale, a growing credit crunch in the mortgage lending industry and the deflation of investor interest in the housing market here and nationwide, all foreshadow some tough months, or years, to come for local residential real estate.

Sellers in any real estate market are psychologically resistant to lowering home prices, Duy said, but the market’s current angst could work itself out through one of a couple of scenarios: prices could come down, which could drain the area’s excess inventory quickly if they come down far enough, or prices will remain stuck somewhere around their current levels or even rise while the region relies on population growth to work off the excess — a process that could take much longer.

Bend money manager Bill Valentine, who warned his radio talk show listeners about inflation in the local housing market as early as 2005, likened the choice to the difference between ripping a Band-Aid off quickly to take the pain all at once, or peeling it off hair by painful hair.

“It has to return to the trend line, and it’s going to happen in one of two ways: fast and ugly or slow and painful,” Valentine said Thursday. “We are gonna end up in the same place, regardless, with a healthy real estate market. We’re probably gonna end up with a thinned-out real estate force, but we still have a great place to live, and people will still be able to make a decent living building houses here and selling real estate.”

A couple of wildcards — recession or rapidly rising interest rates — could make recovery longer and tougher, Valentine said, although an out-and-out recession seems unlikely at this point, and 10-year Treasury bond rates, which tend to foreshadow mortgage rates, have actually dipped in recent weeks.

Hollern, who has led Brooks Resources, the region’s largest development company, since its founding, said he also sees a bright future for real estate here over the next 20 years, although he also sees pain coming in the short term.

“We are overbuilt at the moment,” Hollern said. “But as long as our growth rate — in terms of real people, real jobs and real kids — continues, we’ll work through this in a couple of years and things will pick up again.”

That couple of years, though, could feel like a long stretch for some.

Justin Peterson, a 30-year-old Bend mortgage broker, grew up in Redmond. Up until this year, he hadn’t experienced a local real estate downturn in his lifetime. Now, he’s living through one.

Peterson and his wife bought three investment houses during the boom years of 2005 and 2006. He’s trying to sell one now to generate cash, so far without much luck. Two are rented.

The experience so far hasn’t soured him on real estate investing, Peterson said, but lessons have been learned. Going forward, he said he’ll be more conservative, maybe buying a property every few years rather than buying them in a lump, reducing the chances of buying at the peak of a cycle. He’ll stay more liquid, too — cash is king in a downturn, and it can take a lot of cash to hang onto houses to wait one out.

But for now, like a lot of other recent investors, he’s a seller.

“We definitely haven’t lost faith in real estate, for sure,” Peterson said Thursday. “We’ll just get past this correction and make our adjustments and move on.”

Anonymous said...

Very few of the beautiful people will survive the five cold years.

Get rich quick folk cannot tolerate five years of $6k/yr income.

Given that ALL of Bend was financed on HELOC,

Next 2-3 years will be very ugly.

That said I'm amazed at the number of people on my street that bought their home at $12k in the 70's, and haven't played the game, the attitude is seen the 80's, ... It's the newbies in the last ten years that will be hurt the most,...

Like they say Bend is a city of "Marks".

Anonymous said...


“We are overbuilt at the moment,” Hollern ( Brooks Resources hatchet-man ) said. “But as long as our growth rate — in terms of real people, real jobs and real kids — continues, we’ll work through this in a couple of years and things will pick up again.

Let's grow ourselves out of RE recession. Let's build more houses, lets have more events, and ...

What in the hell is real people? Real kids? What the fuck is this bitch talkin? and to WHOM?

Yes, we're over-built, try a twenty year inventory. Yes, growth will grow us out of this...