SPRINGFIELD, Ore. (KMTR) -- A face-off was held in Springfield on Thursday between the two candidates vying to represent Springfield in Oregon’s House of Representatives.
Republican Joe Pishioneri and Democrat John Lively both took part in a District 12 candidate forum on Thursday, October 18, at the Willamalane Center for Sports and Recreation.
The candidates are vying to fill the state representative seat that’s being vacated by Democrat Terry Beyer, who is retiring.
Each candidate has spent the last several decades living in Springfield and both have experience serving on the Springfield City Council.
Lively served as Springfield’s Mayor from 1981 to 1986. Since then, he’s been largely out of public politics and has been working various communications jobs. Lively has also sat on non-profit boards like the Springfield Chamber of Commerce, the United Way of Lane County and Springfield Public School’s facilities board.
On the other side, Pishioneri is the current Springfield City Council President. He has held a seat on council since 2004. Pishioneri has worked with the Lane County Sheriff’s Office since 1986 and has sat on numerous boards including the McKenzie Water Shed Council, Springfield’s Jail Operations Committee and the state’s Department of Public Safety Standards and Training Corrections Policy Board.
Both candidates say they’re focused on jobs, but have their differences.
"We have to create an environment that is not wanting businesses to move out of state, but wanting them to get here and encourage those folks in businesses to expand running down from the small coffee shop right on up to the large corporations,” says Joe Pishoneri, the Republican candidate for the District 12 State Representative position.
"People that are unemployed and under-employed can't get back to work and earning good wages and benefits so that they can take care of their families. We're going to continue to struggle financially and they're going to continue to struggle so we've got to address that, whatever we can do,” says John Lively, the Democratic candidate for the District 12 State Representative position.
The candidates also took questions on Thursday, but neither has much to say about the advertisements that have been running for and against each campaign. Pishioneri called his campaign aggressive and full of energy, while Lively said his campaign was straightforward.