Sen. Chris Telfer announced this morning that she intends to seek re-election to her state senate seat in Nov. 2012. The Bend Republican who replaced the late Ben Westlund after he was elected Oregon treasurer touted her approval rating in her home district, which she pegged at 82 percent.
A former Bend city councilor and CPA, Telfer has built a reputation as a budget hawk in Salem, but she has also expanded her interest and influence into areas including health care reform. She also served on the bi-partisan redistricting committee that produced a landmark compromise in the last session.
Telfer recently grabbed some local attention when she proposed putting the Oregon Cultural Trust on the budgetary chopping block. The trust was one of her popular predecessor’s legislative legacies, and a program that has proved effective at raising money for the arts even in times of government austerity through a tax credit incentive.