year : 2017 4 results

2017 Session produced good things for rural Oregon

On Friday, July 7, the gavel came down one last time to signal the end of Oregon’s 2017 legislative session. It was the final moment of a packed, productive, sometimes disappointing and occasionally contentious five months in the Capitol. From the first day of the session, much of our discussion, sometimes heated, centered around our perceptions of the differing needs between rural and urban areas of the state. Here in Jackson County we sit somewhere in the middle of that polarity. ...

A vote for reproductive equity

On Saturday morning, I cast a vote in support of House Bill 3391B, the Reproductive Health Equity Act. Sometimes, as in this case, a piece of legislation suddenly feels exceptionally personal. I graduated from high school in 1973, the same year Roe v. Wade was decided by the United States Supreme Court. That case was the third in a series of decisions by the court that changed our lives. In 1965 in the Griswold case, the court ruled that the state of Connecticut could not ban birth ...

Oregon on the verge of real tax, spending reform

When I was elected to the Oregon House of Representatives last November, I had no way to know that nine months later I’d have the opportunity to help Oregon solve problems that have been festering for decades. But this week I’ll be joining with my colleagues to consider reforms that could profoundly benefit families and communities across the state. If approved, these reforms will end decades of budget uncertainty and finally allow the state to make strategic new investments in our ...

Time to discuss tax reform in Oregon

This month the Legislature heard a revised budget forecast that predicts additional revenues of about $200 million for the coming biennium. That’s great news and affirmation of an economy that’s going strong. But it doesn’t change the basic trajectory of a budget that’s $1.6 billion in the hole. Without a revenue infusion, we will be unable to provide any meaningful response to the Oregonians who have implored us for help. Our budget woes reflect the fundamental quandary: the ...