Eugene voters elect Lucy Vinis mayor

Lucy Vinis (Still from SBG video)

EUGENE, Ore. - Eugene voters elected a new mayor on Tuesday, handing Lucy Vinis a decisive victory over City Councilor Mike Clark and 3 other candidates.

Vinis claimed more than 52 percent of the vote.

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Vinis said she plans to use the next 6 months to prepare to take office.

That means she'll be attending meetings, making contacts, and keeping up with the issues in the community.

Vinis has worked as an independent contractor, a development coordinator for Shelter Care, and an active volunteer.

She first considered a mayoral run more than a year ago.

"At some point it became evident to me that all the things that I had been doing in Eugene over the past 25 years were building to this - and I just didn't see it," Vinis said.

Vinis said there's a lot of work to do and has already figured out her first order of business.

"I think the biggest over-arching challenge is the trust and communication," Vinis said. "Both between the city staff and the council, and between the public and the city government as a whole."

Vinis hopes to open up that communication through monthly reports, updating the public and city staff on current issues.

Eugene has been under the leadership of mayor Kitty Piercy for the past 12 years.

Vinis said she has the same core values as Piercy.

"I have a concern about climate change and it's impact on our community," Vinis said. "And I have a concern about people who are struggling with poverty and homelessness and she has addressed that."

Vinis said she differs from Piercy in that she will address the issues based on her experience working for non-profits.

"I have kind of a different history that I get to bring to that conversation," she said.

Vinis also has plans to address homelessness in Eugene, including a proposal to expand CAHOOTS-style programs.

RELATED | CAHOOTS an alternative to traditional police, ambulance response

Her proposed program would include outreach teams, each focusing on a specific areas of town.

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