Camas councilor quits abruptly

Tim Hazen leaves halfway through second term

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Camas City Councilman Tim Hazen sits behind the council table for the last time on Monday, Oct. 16. Hazen, who was in the middle of his second term on the council, announced his surprise resignation at Monday night's city council meeting.

Halfway through his second term on the Camas City Council, Tim Hazen unexpectedly resigned his council seat Monday, saying he wanted to devote more time to work.

Earlier Monday evening, at a council work session, City Administrator Pete Capell said an unnamed citizen had approached the city about selling publicly owned parks open space and turning the property into a senior living facility.

On Tuesday, Capell confirmed that Hazen was the citizen interested in developing the 5-acre parcel near Round Lake.

Hazen announced his resignation at the start of the Monday night meeting and said it would be his last.

“As I told the mayor … in the end, I’ve really enjoyed the experience,” Hazen said. “And I will look for other opportunities to (serve) this community.”

Hazen is the owner-operator of Premiere Senior Living and has worked in senior housing for 30 years. His efforts to build a senior living facility in Camas, on city-owned property, required him to step down from his council position, Hazen said Wednesday.

Hazen was appointed to his Ward 1 council position, which covers downtown and southeast Camas, in January of 2011. He replaced former city councilwoman Helen Gerde, who resigned in 2011 after serving as a councilor for 15 years. Hazen, a Camas resident since 1994, was elected to serve his first full four-year term in November of 2011. He was re-elected in 2015 and was halfway through his second term, which ends Dec. 31, 2019, when he resigned.

Hazen was the council liaison to the city’s parks commission, finance committee and economic development strategy committee, as well as an alternate liaison to the planning commission.

The city council will soon appoint someone to replace Hazen and serve through the end of 2018. If that person wants to serve through the end of Hazen’s actual term, they will have to win the public’s approval in November of 2018.

Camas Mayor Scott Higgins was not in attendance at Monday night’s council meeting, but Hazen thanked the mayor, along with former city administrator Lloyd Halverson and city staff for their guidance during his early years on the council.

“It’s not easy,” Hazen said of being appointed to serve as a city councilor. “There was so much I didn’t understand.”

He credited Higgins, Halverson and others with helping him learn the ropes.

Other Camas city councilors wished Hazen well at the Monday meeting, saying he had been the type of public official who challenged them and made them think more critically.

Mayor Pro-tem Steve Hogan said the council benefitted from Hazen’s breadth and depth of knowledge and wished the outgoing councilor the best of luck in the future.

Hazen said he will still be an active member of the Camas community and promised that he will still coordinate the Camas Days Main Parade, which he’s done for the past 20 years.

The council plans to discuss the procedure to appoint a new councilor at their next work session, scheduled for 4:30 p.m., Monday, Nov. 6.