Oregon’s first-ever lottery-selected Panel on a major planning project.

The 2020-21 Eugene Review Panel at work.

From November 2020 to April 2021, 29 everyday Eugene residents – selected through a democratic lottery – advised the City of Eugene on questions related to its Middle Housing Code Changes Project. Meeting online for a total of 35 hours over 15 meetings, the Panel drafted four reports, which not only provide advice on housing code revisions but also on the City’s public engagement practices.

Project Details

  • This Review Panel was a partnership between the City of Eugene and Healthy Democracy. It was funded by the City of Eugene ($25k) and by grants from the Oregon Department of Land Conservation & Development ($25k) and the Carol & Velma Saling Foundation ($10k).
  • The Panel was composed of 29 Eugene residents from all walks of life. Panelists were randomly selected from among those who replied to a letter, which was sent to 7,500 randomly selected residential addresses within Eugene’s city limits and Urban Growth Boundary.
  • The Panel reflected a microcosm of the city – in terms of age, gender, location of residence, race & ethnicity, educational attainment, experience of a disability, and renter/homeownership. (Additional information about the makeup of the Panel is available in the Documents section of this page.)
  • The Panel deliberated online in large and small groups, each with its own trained professional moderator, using processes drawn from Healthy Democracy’s 12 years of experience running Citizens’ Initiative Reviews and Lottery Selected Panels.
  • The Panel generally met for two and a half hours per session, on the dates below. (Two of the spring sessions were an hour and 15 minutes.)
  • All full-group sessions of the Panel were open to public observers via YouTube live stream, and were also recorded (they are viewable at links above). All small-group sessions were closed to public observers to respect Panelist privacy and foster candid deliberation. (See the Notes section below for additional details about this policy.)
  • In our view, it is vital that everyone selected for online processes be able to fully participate, regardless of technical proficiency. Therefore, Panelists without computers were sent loaner laptops. Panelists without internet connections were provided with hotspots. And all Panelists were provided with one-on-one technical support.
  • Panelists were compensated for their time, with a stipend of $560 for approximately 35 total hours of service, plus additional stipend funds (at $16/hr.) for any time spent outside of sessions in subcommittees and other meetings.
  • The Panel’s first report was released in December 2020, containing Guiding Principles, to advise City staff on zoning code changes related to Oregon House Bill 2001.
  • The Panel reconvened in February 2021 to review and offer feedback on the City’s early code concepts.
  • The Panel also released a report at this time offering the City general public engagement recommendations.
  • The Panel returned in April to review draft code language and offer an assessment of the City’s work to that point.

Learn more about the process

Discussions on Democracy

A series of videos that takes a deep dive into different elements of the process.

Panelists’ Experiences

To help explain Panelists’ experiences to the public, members of the Panel’s Outreach Committee interviewed their fellow Panelists. These are some of their reflections.

Review Panel Reports

  • The Review Panel met nine times in November and December 2020 to create Guiding Principles (Report 1).
  • The Panel reconvened in February and April 2021 to review the City’s progress (Reports 2 & 4).
  • As a first-of-its-kind public process in Eugene, the City also requested the Panel draft general recommendations for future public engagement (Report 3).
Report 1: Guiding Principles

Released after Nov. & Dec. 2020 sessions. This report includes a ranked list of Principles written by the Panel, to advise City staff on code changes related to HB2001.

Report 2: Review of Middle Housing Concepts

Released following the Panel’s Feb. 2021 sessions. This report includes feedback from the Panel related to several key code decisions. Panelists also voted on general approaches to each concept.

Report 3: Public Engagement Recommendations

Released following the Panel’s Feb. 2021 sessions. This report includes prioritized recommendations related to City public engagement, in general. It also includes results from a survey created by and for Panelists about their engagement experiences

Report 4: Review of Middle Housing Draft Code & Affordability Considerations

Released following the Panel’s April 2021 sessions. This report includes prioritized feedback on the City’s draft code language, as well as notes from the Panel on the subject of housing affordability

Key Dates
Other Documents
Press and Presentations about the Project

Process Partners

Planning & Development Department
City of Eugene, Oregon

Oregon’s Kitchen Table,
a project of the National Policy Consensus Center at Portland State University.

Planning & Development Department
City of Eugene, Oregon

Oregon’s Kitchen Table,
a project of the National Policy Consensus Center at Portland State University.



City of Eugene, Oregon


State of Oregon
Dept. of Land Conservation & Development

Carol & Velma Saling Foundation

Additional Notes

Related to Live Streaming of the Panel

Periods when the Panel is in small groups are not live streamed or recorded, to ensure that Panelists feel comfortable having candid conversations with each other in those settings. This mirrors our in-room process, where observers sitting in the public gallery would similarly not be privy to discussions at small group tables.

We do recognize that oversight over moderators in these small groups is vital, however, which is why small groups are observed by independent Process Evaluators. The Panel’s own Process Oversight Committee also helps to provide oversight over staff conduct during small group sessions.

If the Panel moves into small groups while you’re watching the live stream, the live stream will cut out for that period. Unfortunately, our current software setup does not allow us to maintain a continuous live stream when the Panel goes into small groups. To reconnect after the full group has reconvened, go back to our main YouTube channel page, using the link on this page. Refer to the Daily Agendas for details on when the Panel will be in small groups.