On this day, November 29, 1928, Paul Simon (d.2003), later Senator of Illinois, was born in Eugene.
Also on this day, November 29, 2012, Rebecca Jeanette Rubin, a 39-year-old Canadian citizen and environmental radical, turned herself in to the FBI at border in Blaine, Washington. She was part of a cell in Eugene, Oregon, known as the Family, and was sought for setting fires at a Vail ski resort and a lumber mill in Medford, Oregon.
As of the end of 2020, there were 636,000 active recipients
Oregon again swims upstream passing the Sanctuary Promise Act. In its wake, U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen ruled in favor of nine states against the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Judge Hanen said President Barack Obama exceeded his authority when he created the program without providing a pathway to citizenship. The DACA 2012 memo enables certain young immigrants who are in the country illegally and were brought to the U.S. as children to live and work in the country for two-year periods and allows renewal. The ruling halted new applicants but allows immigrants currently protected to keep their status allowing DACA renewals while the case goes through the appeals process. As of the end of 2020, there were 636,000 active recipients. That doesn’t nearly cover the fate of 11 million undocumented people. Plaintiff states were able to successfully prove that the DACA program has increased states’ costs associated with health care, education and law enforcement.
The Sanctuary Promise Act, HB 3265 waiting for the Governor’s signature, ensures public bodies and Oregon law enforcement agencies cannot deny services, benefits and other opportunities due to immigration status or federal immigration action, or inquire about one’s immigration status, unless a criminal investigation is ongoing. The bill clarifies guidelines around Oregon’s interaction with federal documentation requirements in order to improve access to public entities and social services.
The Department of Justice estimates the need of $905,074 of General Funds. The Department of Corrections indicates that the provisions of this bill may endanger the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program grants. The grant funds are intended to partially offset the cost of incarceration relative to the actual undocumented population in the prison system. DOC estimates the grants at $2.5 million Federal Funds per biennium. The grants require that certain information be provided to the U.S. Department of Justice concerning adults in custody and it would appear this measure would prohibit disclosing this information. This may put in jeopardy the Department of Correction’s ability to apply for these grants.
HB 3265 prohibits local law enforcement and other public entities from gathering and sharing immigration information with federal immigration authorities or otherwise assisting immigration law enforcement. The bill also ensures that immigration detention centers cannot operate in Oregon and prohibits federal immigration authorities from carrying out warrantless arrests in Oregon’s courthouses and their vicinities. House Bill 3265 also provides an option to hold accountable individuals and entities that violate this policy.
Senator Chris Gorsek (D-Troutdale), co-sponsor stated, “Oregonians value fairness and recognize an individual’s humanity is above documentation status. It’s on us to change our systems and prove that every one of us deserves equal treatment under the law.” Which laws might he be referring to?
Criminal justice system practices have a significant effect
Twice each year the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis produces the Oregon Corrections Population Forecast which provides projections of the offender populations supervised by the Oregon Department of Corrections. The Department is mandated to use the forecast for budgeting and policy development where the inmate population is concerned.
The report chronicles a steep decline -- based on the reduced ability of the criminal justice system to function due to COVID-19 -- followed by a predicted return to normal, based on normalization of society.
The Covid-19 pandemic is causing dramatic upheaval in the state’s prison system. From April 2020 to February 2021, intakes to prison are 140 intakes below pre-pandemic averages on a monthly basis. This has caused the prison population to drop well below the prior forecast. This forecast assumes that intakes continue to fall short of normal levels, albeit at a decreasing rate, until October 2021. At that point, the criminal justice system is expected to resume functioning in a normal manner. The accuracy of the forecast presented herein is critically dependent on these assumptions and will deteriorate if any or all of them fail to hold.
The report acknowledges that changes in the law and practices within the criminal justice system can impact prison population, but doesn't factor the criminal justice reform bills of the first special session of June 2020 into its forecast:
Criminal justice system practices have a significant effect on the flow of individuals through the court system and into the prisons. Emphasis on specific criminal activity and plea practices, for example, can change based on law enforcement policy and prosecutorial discretion. The amount of discretion in the corrections system, in particular with respect to prosecution of crimes and punishments sought, introduces a considerable degree of uncertainty to the forecast. Even if there was never a change in criminal activity or laws in Oregon, the prison population could vary considerably based on administrative procedures, policies, and individual discretion exercised in law enforcement, prosecution, plea bargaining, and sentencing by judges.
On the heels of the death -- adjudicated to be a murder -- of George Floyd in Minnesota, the following bills were championed by State Rep. Janelle Bynum (D-Portland), passed in June 2020 and have been signed into law by Governor Brown:
HB 4201 Establishes Joint Committee on Transparent Policing and Use of Force Reform.
HB 4203 Provides that peace officer may not use force that impedes normal breathing or circulation of blood of another person by applying pressure on throat or neck, unless peace officer may use deadly physical force.
HB 4205 Requires police officer or reserve officer to intervene to prevent or stop another officer engaged in certain misconduct, unless intervening officer cannot intervene safely.
HB 4207 Directs Department of Public Safety Standards and Training to establish public statewide online database of suspensions and revocations of certifications of police officers.
HB 4208 Prohibits law enforcement agencies from using tear gas for purposes of crowd control except in circumstances constituting riot.
HB 4210 Repeals driving privilege suspension and eliminates imposition of driving privilege restrictions for failure to pay fine.
SB 1604 Restricts arbitration award from ordering disciplinary action that differs from disciplinary action imposed by law enforcement agency if arbitrator makes finding that misconduct occurred consistent with agency's finding of misconduct, and disciplinary action imposed by agency is consistent with provisions of discipline guide or discipline matrix adopted by agency as result of collective bargaining and incorporated into agency's disciplinary policies.
None of these so-called reforms will drive a spike in prison population, but collectively they could drive an increase, especially if backed by the winds of political forces.
Meanwhile, as crime increases -- especially in the Metro area -- the Mill Creek Correctional Facility near Salem and Shutter Creek Correctional Institution in North Bend are both going to be closed within the next six months, marking a loss of over 300 beds. Prior to COVID-19, the ongoing riots and basic lawlessness in the Metro area, and the prison reform bills of the 2020 First Special Session, prison forecasting was easier. We will have to see how the forecasts turn out in the next few years.
On July 15th, the Grants Pass School District 7 Pre-Termination held hearings for North Middle School Assistant Principal Rachel Damiano and science teacher Katie Medart following comments made in a video which asserted that students should use sex appropriate bath-rooms, and discouraged cross-gender bathroom usage. The comments made months ago caused some political correct outrage, and calls for their termination.
The board was split because both motions to support the superintendent’s recommendation to terminate passed by 4 to 3 votes.
The “yes” votes were cast by Board chair Scott Nelson, Brian DeLaGrange, Cliff Kuhlman and Debbie Kuhlman.
The “no” votes were cast by Gary Richardson, Casey Durbin and Todd Neville.
While true, there is a lot more to this story which needs to be to told.
The hearing began with the school district attorney Nancy Hungerford explaining the basis of the allegations. The allegations were supported by a report prepared by former Grants Pass Police Chief Bill Landiss who now operates Pacific Consulting and Investigations.
Next, Damiano delivered her answer to allegations. She went through the allegations point-by-point. We heard how the Oregon Revised Statutes define political activity and how her video did not constitute political activity as defined by state law.
We also learned about the “Heckler’s Veto” which the First Amendment Center defines as, “A heckler’s veto occurs when the government accepts restrictions on speech because of the anticipated or actual reactions of opponents of the speech.”
In this case, what we learned was that the commotion occurred a week after the "I Resolve" video was posted, which proposed that school bathrooms and locker rooms be segregated based on the students’ anatomy. The commotion was caused in part by the superintendent who sent out an email asking to hear from anyone who had been offended by the video.
The board members had an opportunity to question Damiano as well as the district’s attorney. Richardson asked, “What is the district’s policy for putting teachers on paid administrative leave?” The attorney answered that the district has no written policy or procedure to follow. Under Oregon law, the superintendent makes the decision, and the employee is placed on paid administrative leave.
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A motion was made to support the superintendent’s recommendation to terminate Damiano. The motion was followed by a brief discussion. To summarize, Richardson pointed out errors in the private investigator’s report and concluded no violations of school policy occurred.
DeLaGrange said that our “top priority is to make all students feel as safe as possible.”
Board member Todd Neville said that “due process was not followed because no attempt was made to resolve the situation at the lowest level.”
Following the discussion, the board had a rollcall vote. Each board member had to state “yes” or “no” to cast their vote. When it came to Kuhlman, he held up a document he wanted to discuss. Nelson pointed out to him that it was time to vote.
The district’s counsel Bill Ransom spoke to him briefly away from the group. When he came back, he cast the deciding “yes” vote.
Rachel Damiano had been officially fired.
There was a 30-minute break before the next hearing began. The audience was visibly upset with some mad, some in tears, and some livid. Observers noted that someone said: “they’ll never pass a school bond after this.”
At 5pm began Katie Medart’s termination hearing. She was represented by a union attorney because she was a teacher. Katie also presented a well-crafted response to the district’s allegations.
Katie’s attorney elaborated on Katie’s testimony and offered a mini-course on free speech protection for school teachers. He summarized past district behavior when it had attempted to restrict the speech of Ryan Clark. He closed with strong words to the board about the consequences of supporting the superintendent’s recommendation to terminate.
During the question and answer period, Neville asked the district attorney, “Do teachers have first amendment rights?” The answer was “not in the classroom.” None of the allegations said that the educators mentioned anything to violate district policy while in the classroom.
The hearing officially ended and it was time for the board to take action via a motion. In a surprising twist, Richardson made a motion to “not support” the superintendent’s recommendation to terminate Katie. This meant that a “yes” vote would reject the termination of Katie. Board member Kuhlman asked at this point, “Is this situation different from the first situation?” Following a brief discussion, Neville seconded the motion and a discussed ensued.
To summarize the discussion, Richardson stated that any violations of school policy were too minor to warrant termination. Board member Debbie Brownell stated that, “I believe the investigator. At least 5 different reasons to terminate. Exhibits show this and she agrees to it.”
Richardson then asked Brownell, “You accept as true which has been shown today to be false. Why” Brownell’s response was, “This is not a debate. I won’t respond.”
Richardson then pointed out that the “district’s 2008 policy was bathrooms will be segregated by gender.” In 2009, the policy changed to the district will maintain “separate male and female bathrooms and locker rooms.” He then asked, “Why is it suddenly disruptive in our schools when Rachel and Katie support a policy which goes back to 2008?”
There was dead silence in the room.
Nelson broke the silence by asking, “Are there any other questions?”
Richardson then pointed out that 4 of the 5 teachers who complained about Rachel and Katie’s video were not employees of North Middle School. He concluded by saying that “Freedom of speech should be called freedom to offend.”
The motion was explained to Kuhlman. He stated, “I am trying to figure out free speech and how it fits into this case.”
The rollcall vote commenced, and Kuhlman voted to “abstain.” Nelson pointed out to him members need to vote “yes” or “no” on this type of matter. He voted “No” to vote against the motion to not support the superintendent. The motion failed and the meeting continued.
Next there was a motion made by Brownell to support the superintendent’s position to terminate Katie.
At this point, there was little more to be discussed. Katie was fired by a 4 to 3 vote.
A woman has been arrested after reports that she had maliciously set a brush fire in Eugene.
At 2:09 p.m., Eugene Police received a report of a woman, later identified as Natasha Ann Anderson, age 35, who set some bushes on the west side of the former Shopko property, which was also near a construction office trailer in the area of Chad Drive and Coburg Road, and then left the scene.
Eugene Springfield Fire responded to address the fire and Eugene Police began searching for Anderson. She was located in the 2800 block of Crescent and then going south on Shadowview, south of Crescent.
She had a baseball bat attached to her backpack and a taser was used to take her into custody at around 2:23 p.m.
Anderson was lodged at the Lane County Jail on charges of Reckless Burning and Interfering with Peace Officer.
It is case number 21-10862, and incident number 21179307.
“Soft power is the ability to get people to do what you want, just by asking."
The Salem City Council is poised to create a fireworks ban. Councilors Vanessa Nordyke and Trevor Phillips proposed the ban, which was introduced by Coundilor Nordyke, who said. "I move to direct staff to draft an ordinance prohibiting the sale and use of fireworks in the event of hazardous conditions during the Fourth of July holiday weekend."
Councilor Phillips gave a lengthy speech in favor of the ban. He said, "I'm of the opinion it's just easier and better if we take a simple stance of communicating what we want our residents to do...Our police and fire department have no way to enforce the ban, but that doesn't mean that we shouldn't do it...Sometimes we forget that soft power is power and that's the ability to get people to do what you want, just by asking."
He also took occasion to link the proposed fireworks ban to global climate change saying, "This June was the hottest June in Oregon that humans have ever recorded. And that we have to get used to the fact that the rate of change is increasing so when you get these climate crisis events they're just going to get more frequent and more unpredictable."
Salem Fire Chief Mike Niblock was invited to give his thoughts on the matter, which amounted to schooling the council on law, history, power and science:
"When we talk about the legal fireworks...anything that file in the air has been illegal in Oregon for years. You only have to drive across the border into Washington or any Indian reservation to be able to purchase these fireworks. Many people do purchase them, and that's the main issue we have is the illegal fireworks that are already illegal that are being lit off."
"Our conditions here in Salem -- while we do have some drought conditions -- were minimal for large fire risk. This is from the national Pacific Northwest significant fire potential forecast. So, we look at the science, every year. I can show you a ten-year history of firework related fires in our town, and I think the largest year's loss we had was $7,000. This year we had five fires related to fireworks -- about $3,000 in property loss. So, the issue of fireworks are causing a lot of fires simply is not the case in Salem."
"What we don't do is look at global warming as a reason to do a firework ban. We look at actual weather forecasts in the city."
Governor Kate Brown today urged Oregonians seeking help to pay current and future rent and utility payments to apply immediately for rental assistance through OregonRentalAssistance.org.
Governor Brown noted that historic amounts of rental assistance are now available in Oregon, and urged Oregonians to apply as soon as possible:
“Housing is a basic human need, which is why I have continued to work with the Legislature and our congressional delegation to devote state and federal resources to ensure that Oregonians who have been hardest hit by the rent impacts of the pandemic have a warm, dry, safe place to live.
Qualified Oregonians can apply for rental assistance through the Oregon Emergency Rental Assistance Program (OERAP) to help pay back current and future rent. Of note, Oregonians may still qualify to receive assistance even though Oregon’s residential eviction moratorium expired on June 30.
On May 19, 2021, Governor Brown signed SB 282 into law, a bill that extended the repayment period for residential rent accrued during the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill gives renters until February 28, 2022 to repay all rent accrued between April 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
On June 25, 2021, Governor Brown also signed SB 282, which provides a 60-day safe-harbor period from eviction for nonpayment of rent to tenants who provide their landlords with proof that they have applied for rental assistance. In Multnomah County, the safe harbor period is 90-days. Don’t wait to seek help. OERAP is accepting applications now. Those who have begun an application should submit it right away. The program is offered to all eligible renters regardless of immigration status.
Want to make a difference in transportation in Oregon?
The state's most comprehensive transportation planning document, the Oregon Transportation Plan, is getting an update, and one of the key committees is seeking three at-large members.
The goal is to have a wide variety of interests and experience reflected in the 20+ person Policy Coordinating Committee, with at-large members possibly representing youth, seniors or young families, or any other unique perspective. The committee will help advise the project team and the Oregon Transportation Commission.
“We’ll have a core membership representing the geographic and social diversity of Oregon, as well as a cross-section of interests such as active transportation, freight mobility, and climate,” said Amanda Pietz, ODOT’s Policy, Data and Analysis administrator. “We hope our at-large members will further broaden the lived experiences and diverse perspectives at the table.”
A broad, overarching policy plan, the Oregon Transportation Plan gets updated every 15-20 years to reflect the latest trends and needs of the state's different transportation system users. The plan, also known as the OTP, sets priorities that can be influential in making investment decisions, and the update can include changes to the long-range vision, goals, policies and strategies that shape Oregon’s multimodal transportation system through 2050.
NOTE: If selected for the Policy Coordinating Committee, ODOT will work with each member to determine eligibility and appropriate compensation in accordance with the agency’s new Equitable Engagement Compensation Policy.
In an ongoing saga, the failed development of the Yamhelas-Westsider bike and pedestrian trail in Yamhill county has taken a political turn. A series of public records requests have revealed what both elected and non-elected officials have done to manipulate public opinion and sabotage the legal process in attempting to build a bike path at public expense through Exclusive Farm Use zoning without a Conditional Use Permit.
Over the course of the project, the State Land Use Board of Appeals has ruled five out of five times that this was an illegal action. They even awarded attorney’s fees on the fifth and final defeat handed the County. Feeling they can ignore the law, Friends of Yamhelas Westsider Trail, actively working with elected and non-elected County officials have continued to attempt to spend public dollars in a quest for a bike path.
A professionally written, misleading article by freelance writer Leah Sotille -- more a hit piece, than actual reporting -- appeared in Colorado-headquartered High Country Magazine highly critical of Commissioner Berschauer’s role in presiding over the last days of the trail. The problem with the article was all the pertinent facts were left out to mislead the reader.
A new player has emerged in the person of Phillip Higgins, a real estate broker from Newberg. Recent public records show that prior to February 3, 2021, he contacted a leftist freelance journalist named Leah Sotille to write a hit piece on County Commissioner Lindsay Berschauer. Her crime? She’s favorable to Timber Unity, an Oregon-based natural resource and agricultural activist group.
Sottile emailed back to Higgins stating she knew little about the Trail controversy and asked him for information. Higgins emailed Sottile to engage her on the project. In a later email, Higgins told Sottile that the best source of information on the Trail was Carrie Martin, Grants Administrator. Higgins became part of the Trail group as an addition to emails, also obtained by FOIA, as early as 11/23/20. He was one of a group led by Commissioner Casey Kulla plotting to move a County leased property away from a private party to gain control of what they hoped would be a Trailhead.
The plot was thwarted through legal means. County Grants Administrator Carrie Martin had the idea “floated by” her in that email. Separately, Martin was caught speaking out of both sides of her mouth about timelines to complete a Trail bridge being built illegally with ODOT grant money.
In an email to ODOT on June 17, 2020 she stated it would be 15 days to completion. That was in response to an email concerning a Oregon Department of Justice finding that the County was in breach of the terms of the grant, the basis for termination. The Oregon Department of Justice and the Oregon Department of Transportation killed the Trail, but Martin was apparently trying to save it.
Commissioner Kulla stoked the fire stating that the use of publicly requested emails -- inferring it was the Carrie Martin emails -- was harassment. Apparently it’s just not fair to know what County officials are plotting to do with your tax dollars. The plan to beat up on Berschauer was hatched. She knew too much and had to be silenced. The High Country piece was heavy on details of Berschauer’s private life but totally lacking in substantive matters leading to the Trail’s demise through the Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals.
Knowing that the author confessed to little knowledge of the Trail controversy and that she was told Carrie Martin was the best source of information on the subject it is quite possible that Martin is the one working hardest to circle the wagons around herself. Her consulting business works with firms who are vendors contracting to Yamhill County on projects involving grant money. She has more to lose than just her job. County Counsel Todd Sadlo is under investigation by the Oregon Bar for his role in advising the County to continue spending grant money on a project deemed illegal as long ago as three years. He too has more to lose than just his job. Both are potentially liable personally for violating ORS 294.100 regarding wanton and willful wasting of public funds.
The road seems to be in a constant state of disrepair
The Oregon Legislature has approved $80 million in funding to the Oregon Department of Transportation for safety projects on 82nd avenue.
This funding also secures a future transfer of the highway from state to the local city government.
In a May 2021 agreement, the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) and Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) agreed to a $185 million funding framework for eventual transfer of the roadway from state jurisdiction to local control under the city of Portland.
To address the safety issues described, roughly $95 million of the $185 million would be allocated directly toward safety improvements.
With the $80 million allocation from the legislature, ODOT and PBOT commit to making the additional investments necessary to reach the full cost to transfer. The agreement is slated to be finalized via Intergovernmental Agreement by January 2022.
“This historic funding and agreement brings real change for the thousands of residents that rely on this street. As a community organizer, I have spent the last 5+ years working on this issue." said Representative Khanh Pham (D-Portland).
82nd Avenue, also known as State Highway OR-213, is a defining roadway in Portland, however, it is also a dangerous road.
16 traffic-related deaths occurred on 82nd Avenue between 2007 and 2018. As recently as April 2021, two pedestrians were killed on 82nd Avenue.
Destinations like the Jade District and Montavilla are part of 82nd Avenue.
The road seems to be in a constant state of disrepair.
The ODOT/PBOT agreement would include the cost of bringing signals, lighting, ADA ramps (total $95 million), pavement ($78 million), and stormwater ($12 million) to state of good repair, and addressing some of the most urgent deficiencies in sidewalks and pedestrian crossings.
"Oregon Walks is dedicated to ensuring equitable outcomes along this road, not just in active transportation but also housing, economic development, place making, and safe access to schools and parks.” said Ashton Simpson, Executive Director at Oregon Walks
“This funding will transform 82nd Avenue from a dangerous dividing line into a safe, community-focused bridge,” said Senator Michael Dembrow (D-Portland).
This funding is within HB 5006, which already passed the the Oregon legislature and awaits Governor Kate Brown's signature. Once signed by the Governor, ODOT will begin implementation fall 2021.
Designed to address only local actions that the Council can take
The Salem City Council has declared through a resolution passed unanimously that health care is a fundamental right. This occurred at their July 12 meeting.
The resolution declares that "individual wellbeing and public health both benefit when all members of a community have real, meaningful access to health care."
It commits the City Council to:
Support Oregon Senate Joint Resolution 12, which would amend the state constitution, establishing an obligation of the state to ensure "every resident of the state access to cost-effective, clinically appropriate and affordable health care."
Express support for state-based universal healthcare and send a letter to that effect to the Legislature and Governor.
Send a letter to Oregon's federal delegation urging them to create pathways to establish state-based systems under federal waivers that can remove barriers to receiving federal financial support.
The resolution is designed to address only local actions that the Council can take.
“We are so proud to finally have our own identity”
The Portland Winterhawks of the Western Hockey League, have revealed a new brand identity, including a new primary, secondary and wordmark logos, as well as a revised color scheme.
“We are so proud to finally have our own identity,” began Michael Kramer of Winterhawks Sports Group, owner and managing partner of the franchise. “We feel our new look is fresh and unique, one that we are excited about and believe our community will be as well.”
The club’s new primary logo, a right-facing hawk featured with a predominantly white head, also carries the tradition of former colors black and red. The new scheme adds “celly gold” and also squall gray, a color distinct to the new Winterhawks brand. The palette comes together on the bird to take place of an existing emblem that began representing the organization after being loaned in 1976.
Also featured on the bird head are two feathers, carrying the legacy of the franchise’s roots and serving as a subtle nod to the feathers in the previous logo. The bottom of the hawk’s head includes Mount Hood in the aforementioned new squall gray, an iconic mountain from the Cascade Range synonymous with the Portland area. Located within the Mount Hood figure are also the letters “W” and “H”, for further characterization of Winterhawks. The previous logo was the same one used by the Chicago Blackhawks.
“Under a new ownership group led by Michael Kramer and Kerry Preete, the Portland Winterhawks are embarking on a new chapter in franchise history, so it is only fitting they do so with a new primary logo design that truly represents Portland, the Pacific Northwest and its great fanbase,” commented WHL Commissioner Ron Robison. “The Winterhawks have a long history of success in the Portland market and I am confident their passionate fans will embrace this fresh approach and unique design when the WHL Regular Season opens in October.”
The new brand identity was created in collaboration with Portland Gear, a local Portland-based company and designed by Brian Gundell, a University of Oregon graduate that has created work for NHL, MLB, NFL, MLS, MiLB, Adidas and Under Armour.
“We are very excited to played a role in the creation of a new identity for one of the Portland’s four major sports teams,” Marcus Harvey, owner of Portland Gear remarked. “This project was many months in the making and we’re thrilled to finally be able to showcase it.”
The refreshed color scheme can also be seen in the club’s new secondary logo, which features a revitalized edition of the “Portland P” that the team has utilized in the past. The logo will be worn on the team’s jerseys as a shoulder patch, with the P being in gold font at the forefront of two hockey sticks in squall gray. “Est. 1976” – a nod to the 45-year success of the franchise in The Rose City, one of the longest tenured in the WHL, is also included on the patch. “Winterhawks” can be seen hung in a banner atop the logo.
The team’s new identity goes into place effective immediately.
Governor Kate Brown announced today that she will appoint Kelly Kritzer to the Klamath County Circuit Court to fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Cameron Wogan. Kritzer currently serves as the probate commissioner and law clerk for the Klamath and Lake County Circuit Courts.
Her appointment is effective immediately.
“Kelly Kritzer’s experience has given her a deep familiarity with the varied work of the Klamath County Circuit Court, and will enable her to hit the ground running immediately,” said Governor Brown. “I am pleased to appoint her to the bench.”
Kritzer grew up in Michigan and earned her bachelor’s degree in 1991 from the University of Michigan.
Kritzer went to law school at Willamette University. After graduating in 2003, Kritzer served as a law clerk for the Klamath County Circuit Court for three years and then as a Klamath County Deputy District Attorney. After leaving the DA’s office, Kritzer went into private practice from 2008 to 2016. In 2017, she was hired into her current role as probate commissioner and law clerk, where she provides legal research and writing support for judges in Klamath and Lake Counties.