Lone contested city council race heats up in an interesting way

By CRAIG MURPHY Of the Keizertimes There is only one contested Keizer City Council race this year, but it’s providing some unexpected drama. Three council seats and the mayoral seat are up this year. But of those four, three outcomes can be predicted with a high degree of certainty before the results are announced Tuesday night. That’s because current councilor Cathy Clark is running unopposed to replace Lore Christopher as mayor. Former longtime city employee Roland Herrera is running unopposed for council as is former councilor Brandon Smith, whose write-in candidacy in 2012 fell short. The only contested race is between former Planning Commission member Matt Chappell – who also ran in 2012 – and longtime community volunteer Amy Ripp. Ripp has been the clear favorite all along, but there has been some excitement in the race lately. In the last two weeks, the Keizertimes has mentioned legal troubles for both Ripp and her business partner. The real excitement, however, got going with Chappell’s letter to the editor about Ripp and her business partner, as well as two of her key endorsements. “How long Lore Christopher and Kim Thatcher knew about these things, before they endorsed her, is something to consider when it comes to the validity of their endorsements,” Chappell wrote in part. Smith posted a link to the letter on his Facebook page the afternoon of Oct....

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