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Oregon Legislature Interim Committee Meetings
Wednesday, December 7, 2022 at 8:00 am
Legislative Committee hearings
Oregon Capitol



Oregon Legislature Interim Committee Meetings
Thursday, December 8, 2022 at 8:00 am
Legislative Committee hearings
Oregon Capitol



Oregon Legislature Interim Committee Meetings
Friday, December 9, 2022 at 8:00 am
Legislative Committee hearings
Oregon Capitol



82nd Session of the Oregon Legislature Begins
Monday, January 9, 2023 at 8:00 am
The 2023 Session of the Oregon Legislature begins. Legislators are sworn in and bills are introduced.
Oregon Capitol, Salem


View All Calendar Events


Newberg is at the Center of What is Happening Statewide
There is an effort to radicalize, sexualize, and recruit our children by a socialist, progressive movement

Since March 13, 2017, Indivisible.org has set their eyes on taking over public schools in western Oregon. They began by publishing a handbook, Indivisible: A Practical Guide for Resisting the Trump Agenda. The book advocates for using paper terrorism tactics to harass politicians and private companies into supporting far left “progressive” causes, such as Critical race theory.

Last August, Newberg School Board took a stance against all things political in the classrooms, including BLM and LGBTQ signage, progressive political discussion and activism, unless directly related to an educational lesson. Their purpose in creating this policy was to turn the focus back to education in an effort to create a neutral learning environment where all children are treated equally.

Indivisible.org formed local chapters across the state. In Yamhill, the local group is Progressive Yamhill and is behind the recall of two Newberg School Board members, Dave Brown and Brian Shannon, whom proposed the new policy. The Media Coordinator for Say NO to the Recalls Campaign, says “these progressive organizations are sending their people into small-town America, to flip the underbelly of our communities upside down. They are taking over all local committee seats, elected seats, school board seats so that they can take over the conservative voice and replace it with their progressive voice. Right now, The Newberg School Board is being harassed, threatened and sued while the campaign to oust these conservative members is funded with out-of-state progressive Hollywood money funding the recall cause.”

Indivisible.org is aiming at more than the school board. In January 2019 Casey Kulla was elected Yamhill County Commissioner and recently announced his candidacy for Governor. In cooperation with Progressive Yamhill members, Kulla introduced a motion for Yamhill County to adopt an “inclusivity resolution” with the goal of implementing Critical Race Theory employee training to the County departments.

Critical Race Theory isn’t the only battle being fought. There is also an organized effort to radicalize, sexualize, and recruit our children by a socialist, progressive movement that aims to turn them against America. One insider says, “We have seen an unnatural number of children from the Newberg school district come out as gay or trans (mostly young girls) in the last couple of years. Please allow me to iterate that in no way do we stand against or discriminate against children who are members of the LGBTQ community. We believe all children should be loved and included and we strongly stand against any form of bullying or discrimination. We are seeing a movement that appears to be accelerating at an unnatural rate.” A video that is part of the My Future My Choice curriculum approved by the Oregon Department of Education is being shown to 7th graders as part of the sexual education curriculum called Love is Love: Free to Be Me.

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Dave Brown and Brian Shannon have taken a strong stance against the progressive agenda spreading across Oregon into local government and schools. They see this movement as stealing our children and if they lose their positions on the Newberg School Board it will send a message to Indivisible.org that Oregon no longer stands behind the constitution. They have received death threats, their family members threatened, they’ve had to pull their kids out of school, and are facing multiple lawsuits. Yet, they stand firm in their stance to protect our children from this progressive agenda. Newberg school board has the Oregon Department of Education, the Oregon Teachers Union, the ACLU, and several national media sources coming against them. What should be news is the current graduation rate has declined another 25%, down from 50%, and that some Newberg teachers have even attempted to remove the American flag from their classrooms, stating it is the most political flag there is. What does this teach their students?


--Donna Bleiler

Post Date: 2021-12-17 10:12:11Last Update: 2021-12-17 15:26:29



$18 million for Afghan Refugees
Oregon Legislature approves the spending

During the December special session, the Oregon Legislature approved $18 million in funding through SB 5561 for Afghan refugee resettlement efforts.

This funding is intended to provide Afghan individuals and families resettling in Oregon with housing, education, legal aid, job training and other culturally responsive services.

The Oregon Department of Human Services’ (ODHS) Refugee Program administers federally funded cash and medical supports to refugees and individuals with eligible immigration statuses, and contracts with Resettlement Agencies (RAs) to provide initial resettlement services.

The United States is currently coordinating the relocation of more than 70,000 people following their evacuation from Afghanistan.

Afghan families began arriving in Oregon this fall, and the number of arrivals will increase in the coming months.

Oregon has committed to resettling 1,200 Afghan arrivals, but existing federal funding did not provide adequate support for these efforts.

This newly approved funding will allegedly address critical resource gaps in the state’s resettlement plan.

The Biden Administration has increased the number of refugees permitted to enter the United States, but funding and capacity have remained major issues.

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Senator Kayse Jama (D-Portland) and Representative Khanh Pham (D-Portland) have called for a compassionate response to evacuated Afghan allies, urging the state to address the gaps and create a strong foundation for refugees’ future in Oregon.

“We know that Afghan families and individuals coming to Oregon have experienced trauma,” said ODHS Director Fariborz Pakseresht.

The approved $18 million in funding will enable the department to meet the needs of Afghan arrivals while building back refugee resettlement infrastructure to accommodate the increase in arrivals from all around the world.

Funding includes allocations for the following: “The state of Oregon has really stepped up to meet the needs of individuals and families from Afghanistan,” said Claire Seguin, deputy director of ODHS Self- Sufficiency Programs and the state’s refugee coordinator. “We began this year with three partner resettlement agencies, and now we have five."

The program partners with Oregon’s five local refugee resettlement agencies (Catholic Charities, Lutheran Community Services Northwest, Sponsors Organized to Assist Refugees, Salem for Refugees, and the Immigrant & Refugee Community Organization).


--Bruce Armstrong

Post Date: 2021-12-16 21:42:56Last Update: 2021-12-16 22:04:07



What Kate Brown Said in Scotland
“Communities of color are being disproportionately impacted”

Leaders from across the world traveled to Glasgow, Scotland on November 6, 2021 to attend the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP 26) where they discussed the impacts of- and solutions for- climate change.

Governor Kate Brown represented Oregon at COP 26 and dramatically highlighted the impacts of climate change on Oregonians, and the actions Oregon is taking to decrease carbon emissions and transition to "green" energy.

“To put it simply, climate change is hitting Oregon like a hammer in the head,” said Governor Brown at a panel hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy on transitioning to a clean energy economy.

“I’m here to tell you that we are a warning for the rest of the world. Like the 2020 wildfires of Australia, the droughts of East Africa, the flooding and landslides of South Asia, together we are canaries in the coal mine if action isn’t taken. But, I’m also here to tell you we can tackle climate change and grow our economy at the same time. And Oregon is a shining example of how it can be done.”

Governor Brown joined discussions at COP 26 with leaders from Brazil, Canada, Japan, and fellow West Coast governors. Topics ranged from ocean acidification, to the impacts of food waste, and the important role states play in fighting climate change.

Kate Brown stated that Oregon’s low-income, rural, and communities of color are being disproportionately impacted by climate change — and around the world, poorer countries are bearing the impacts of climate change more than wealthier nations. Governor Brown believes it is Oregon’s responsibility to tackle climate challenges through an equity lens and focusing on vulnerable communities.

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Oregon lost over 4,000 houses due to the devastating Labor Day wildfires in 2020. Kate Brown says that undocumented families were impacted greatly.

The state spent millions of dollars in assisting non-documented migrants with housing.

In Oregon’s efforts to work toward 100% clean energy by 2040, the state has prioritized working with low-income families to help them access available energy.

During Governor Brown’s time at COP 26, she used the international platform to warn the rest of the world about the dire effects of climate change and showcase how Oregon is using an equity-based approach to taking climate action.

In the closing remarks of Governor Brown’s COP 26 speech, she stressed that “the future generations will judge us not on the fact of climate change, but what we have done to tackle it."


--Bruce Armstrong

Post Date: 2021-12-16 20:58:47Last Update: 2021-12-16 21:15:32



School Choice Initiative Launched
The initiative was quietly filed late this summer

As school districts become more and more responsive to public employee unions and they system becomes less and less accountable -- while at the same time it becomes more and more expensive -- a group of citizens is taking independent steps to return focus on students. Education Freedom for Oregon is proposing a ballot measure to write school choice into the Oregon Constitution.

The education establishment has been feeling what has been a decades-long decline in the effectiveness of the Oregon public school system. Many feel that the COVID-19 outbreak was not handled very well as distance learning failed to meet the needs to many students and the exodus from the public school system escalated.

Parents' frustration with public schools rose to a fever pitch when earlier this year the legislature passed SB 744 which prohibits State Board of Education from requiring for high school diploma that student show proficiency in any academic content area if a student successfully completed credit requirements. This concept was so negatively regarded that there were no sponsors for the bill -- it was introduced as a committee measure and introduced by the Senate Committee on Education, chaired by Senator Michael Dembrow (D-Portland).

Led by Chief Petitioner Marc Thielman, the school choice initiative was quietly filed late this summer and quickly met the requirements to get a title from the Attorney General. That process is being completed now, and the group expects to be gathering the approximately 150,000 signatures from Oregon registered voters needed to put it on the ballot in November 2024.

Thielman -- who is also running for Governor -- has been a superintendent and principal since 2005. He became the Superintendent for Alsea for the opportunity to run a preschool through 12th grade, an open-enrollment school district, founded on a business model designed to meet the needs of all students.

According to the website, Thielman "stood up for the families and students in his district and safely kept his schools open while most of the Oregon schools were closed for Covid. By keeping his schools open, he saved hundreds of students and families from unnecessary hardship and poor mental health outcomes, including youth suicide."

To find out more or to get involved, see Education Freedom for Oregon's website.


--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2021-12-16 18:41:43Last Update: 2021-12-16 21:12:38



Dr. Cyrus Javadi Announces Legislative Campaign
Will run for Oregon’s House District 32

Dr. Cyrus Javadi has announced his intention to run for State Representative in House District 32 (ranging from Neskowin to Astoria on the North Coast) as a Republican in the May 2022 Primary.

"The divide between the right and the left is growing so large," said Dr. Javadi. "As a small business owner and dentist who loves this community, I still believe we can find common sense solutions without abandoning our values. That's where most of the people in our coastal communities are at and it's what they want from their leaders."

Dr. Javadi runs a dental practice in Tillamook. A father of five, he and his wife moved to Tillamook 10 years ago because of their love for the small town feel, clean air, and sense of community found on the North Oregon Coast.

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"I've never been a politician and I never saw myself running for office, but believe it's time for people to step up and to sacrifice for this state and this great country if we want to have a better tomorrow," continued Dr. Javadi.

House District 32 is currently represented by Rep. Suzanne Weber (R-Tillamook) who recently announced she is running for Senate District 16.


--Bruce Armstrong

Post Date: 2021-12-16 12:41:32Last Update: 2021-12-16 13:55:08



Republicans Comment on Second Special Session
Failure persists at Department of Housing

Oregon House Republican Leader Vikki Breese-Iverson (R-Prineville) released a statement regarding the conclusion of the second special session of 2021.

“This unnecessary special session was called because of yet another state agency failure,” said Leader Breese-Iverson. “Democrat state leaders have not addressed the numerous errors and mistakes at OHCS that are hurting Oregonians. This is a complete failure of leadership. House Republicans urge significant changes to these agencies under Democrat control. We call on the Governor to dramatically increase oversight to ensure this money gets to real people in need.”

“The additional legislation passed during this special session finally holds the state accountable to two promises we made earlier this year: action against illegal drug cartels in Southern Oregon and drought relief for farmers,” added Leader Breese-Iverson. “It’s unfair to Oregonians that this money was withheld for months. Democrats are more interested in chasing headlines with a special session, and as a result people continue to suffer while they wait.”

Observers are insisting that the legislation from Democrats prolongs drastic government disruption in rental housing to give more time and money to the ailing Oregon Housing and Community Services Department (OHCS). For months the agency failed to distribute timely relief to renters and property owners, promising improvements that never came despite millions of dollars from the Legislature.

Additional bills were passed and were supported by House Republicans. Included were belated support for law enforcement to combat drug cartels operating illegal cannabis grow sites in Southern Oregon and long-awaited drought relief for farmers.

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State Representative Christine Drazan (R-Canby) also renewed her call for accountability and new leadership at the Oregon Housing and Community Services Department (OHCS) in the wake of the agency’s repeated failures to manage the state’s emergency rental assistance program. Representative Drazan again stressed the need for accountability after the Legislature voted to extend the program without a clear plan for addressing the issues that have plagued its rollout.

“Oregonians across the state are frustrated with how the Oregon Housing and Community Services Department has managed this program, and they should be,” said Representative Drazan. “Thousands of vulnerable renters have been left hanging in the balance while they wait for this agency to get its act together. Oregonians deserve accountability for this agency’s repeated failures. I once again urge Governor Brown to make a change in leadership at OHCS and to take concrete steps to finally get this program on track.”

Representative Drazan previously called on Governor Brown to replace OHCS Director Margaret Salazar on Friday, in advance of today’s special session.

“I will not vote to extend a program that has let down so many people without a change in leadership at OHCS, a clear plan for addressing these failures immediately, and a commitment from this Legislature to exercise proper oversight by ensuring that Oregonians have access to a functioning agency. It’s long past time for us to step in and right this ship,” concluded Representative Drazan.


--Bruce Armstrong

Post Date: 2021-12-15 19:40:45Last Update: 2021-12-15 19:52:38



ODA to Establish Disaster Relief Fund
Oregon Legislature passes bill in special session

During the 2021 second special session, the Oregon Legislature passed Senate Bill 892 that directs the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) to establish a disaster assistance program.

The Legislature awarded $40 million to this new, one-of-a-kind program to help mitigate economic losses farmers and ranchers sustained because of the compounding natural disasters in 2021, including the ice storm, heat dome, and drought.

“I commend the Oregon Legislature and Governor Kate Brown for their firm support of SB 892,” said Alexis Taylor, Director, ODA. “Over the last two years, Oregon has experienced one natural disaster after another, with the pandemic on top of all of that. I have heard from so many Oregon farmers and ranchers who are concerned how they will make it through next year. The funds provided by SB 892 will keep many operations afloat until the USDA develops its federal disaster program that is expected to be announced by mid-2022. All of us at ODA will work as fast as we can to develop an application and distribution process to get these dollars to those in need.”

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USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack visited damaged berry farms in the Willamette Valley in August 2021, shortly after the heat dome event that brought temperatures of 117 degrees. During his visit, he and Oregon Governor Kate Brown heard from local farmers and ranchers about the limitation and delay in federal disaster delivery. SB 892 allows ODA to contract with regional lenders to provide localized access to disaster assistance. The intent is to meet the unique needs of Oregon producers, for whom disaster assistance has not typically worked for.

SB 892 gives ODA the authority to contract with lending institutions to administer the disaster assistance program locally.

The Legislature designed the loan program to act as a bridge loan or direct assistance while the upcoming federal program is developed. ODA says they intend to begin the implementation process immediately to serve Oregon’s agricultural community.


--Bruce Armstrong

Post Date: 2021-12-15 16:00:01Last Update: 2021-12-15 16:18:15



Will Omicron Variant be a Christmas Spoiler?
“This may be good in terms of getting people immune”

The Oregon Health Authority claims three Omicron variant cases have been detected in Oregon on December 13. Two were residents of Washington County and one from Multnomah County that were fully vaccinated. OHA’s epidemiologist, Dr. Dean Sidelinger’s answer for the concerned public is to get fully vaccinated.

They just recently figured out how to split the flu test from the COVID-19 tests and by some speedy discovery they can already track the omicron variant. They apparently already have a test for omicron and that the current vaccine and boosters will work on it. That’s some class action speed of developmental science.

Omicron was discovered in South Africa. The South African doctor who first spotted omicron variant says cases are mild. ER Dr. Omar Hamada, former U.S. Army Special Forces lieutenant colonel told Capitol Report, “If the infectivity is greater, but the virulence or severity is less, this may be actually something good in terms of getting people immune to it without necessarily having to depend on a vaccine that’s not incredibly effective.”

Pfizer executive Ralf Rene Reinert claims their work on new versions of their vaccine concluded that the original shot provides good protection. On the other front, Moderna will submit an omicron variant booster for authorization in March.

The World Health Organization says the omicron variant has a number of mutations that suggests an increased risk of reinfection. Mike Ryan, executive director of the WHO’s health emergencies program, said “clearly the virus does appear to be transmitting efficiently.” Is he saying as they hoped it would?

The symptoms for omicron are the same as being recorded for the vaccines – heart related complications, heart failure, blood clots, weakness and pain. People passing away from the vaccine that were attributed to the delta variant will now be recorded as an omicron death within the seven-day window of being vaccinated.

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President Biden is taking the cautious route by not issuing vaccine mandates after the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals denied the Biden administration’s attempt to overturn a hold on the mandate.

Respiratory viruses mutate and usually mutate into something more benign. It could be a good thing to get it and achieve natural immunity. There is no reason for mandates when there are effective easy remedies.

Oregon Health and Science University reported that Thanksgiving did not create a wave of infections and hospital cases are on the decline. There is no indication the omicron variant should interfere with Christmas plans, but will Governor Brown see something in her scientific tea leaves that will frighten her?


--Donna Bleiler

Post Date: 2021-12-14 19:15:04Last Update: 2021-12-14 19:22:45



Metro Council Approves New District Boundaries
Metro serves Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties

The Metro Council approved a new district map that balances the constituencies of elected leaders in the wake of the 2020 Census.

The map keeps the same rough outline of Metro Council districts: District 1 in east Multnomah County, Boring and parts of Happy Valley; District 2 in north-central Clackamas County and parts of Southwest Portland; District 3 in urban Washington County south of the Tualatin Valley Highway; District 4 in urban Washington County north of TV Highway and Canyon Road; District 5 in Portland north of US 26 and I-84 including the inside of the downtown freeway loop; and District 6 in Portland south of US 26, I-405 and I-84.

Here’s what changed from the old map:

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The districts take effect immediately. With the district boundaries set, the council will now focus on filling the vacancy in District 6.

Applications for that vacancy are now being accepted.


--Bruce Armstrong

Post Date: 2021-12-14 19:05:22Last Update: 2021-12-14 19:16:49



Northwest Oregon Housing Authority Board Seeks Applicants
Volunteer opportunity in northwest Oregon

Clatsop County has announced that applicants are being sought for an open seat on the Northwest Oregon Housing Authority Board of Commissioners.

The Northwest Oregon Housing Authority owns and manages housing for low- and moderate-income people and administers various federal housing assistance programs in Clatsop, Columbia and Tillamook counties.

The board normally meets once a month, the location rotates among the counties.

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The open seat is for a four-year term representing Clatsop County.

To apply, go to the online sign-up form here or contact the Clatsop County Manager’s Office at 800 Exchange St., Suite 410, Astoria OR 97103, (503) 325-1000.


--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2021-12-14 18:31:50Last Update: 2021-12-14 18:50:10



Senator Heard Protests Masks at Oregon Capitol
Republican calls out Kate Brown, is escorted from Senate gallery

The State Senator for Oregon Senate District 1 and Oregon Republican Party Chairman, Dallas Heard (R-Roseburg) was removed from the floor of the Oregon State Legislature during a Special Session floor meeting, declining to wear a facial mask in civil protest.

He told Senate President Peter Courtney (D-Salem) that he would not comply with the order to wear a mask, and he would also not leave the voting floor, as he was elected to represent the people of his district in the matter.

The Senate President then ordered the Senate Sergeant of Arms to escort Heard from the voting floor. Heard accompanied the Sergeant of Arms without incident.

"Simply put I am just exercising the rights of the free people of Oregon," Senator Heard said.

Heard continued,"I think it's very interesting that our very own Governor who has put our children and the people of Oregon under these mandates and was recently photographed many time in fact, not wearing a mask at a crowded indoor event. This has gone on far enough!"



"You know you don't have a mask on, you're supposed to have a mask on," said a visibly shaken Senator Courtney. "So why don't you get up and tell us what you want, then I'm going to ask you to leave the floor."


--Bruce Armstrong

Post Date: 2021-12-13 20:26:01Last Update: 2021-12-13 21:32:45



Analysis:What Happens when the Legislature Gets Bored
Remember when nooses were the current scandal?

The Northwest Observer doesn't cover national news, such as the race crime hoax the likes of which actor Jussie Smolett was recently convicted of. There are plenty of national media sources and a quick internet search will get one up to date if they haven't heard the story. As one pundit describes it the left's demand for racism exceeds the supply.

It took an FBI investigation to confirm that the "noose" used as a door pull on the garage occupied by NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace was not a hate crime. But for a while, noose season was in full swing.

Over here in Oregon where we have a one-party government, they seem to have solved every other problem that it seems that they have to turn to fake problems to keep themselves busy.

Speaking of nooses, SB 398, introduced by Senator James Manning, Jr. and passed into law during the 2021 regular session created the crime of intimidation by display of a noose. The law goes into effect in a couple of weeks on January 1, 2022.

It will be interesting to see if any new "noose" crimes are prosecuted and -- as ugly and insensitive as trying to intimidate someone by displaying a noose would be -- to see if the courts would actually uphold this law in the face of the First Amendment and Article 1, Section 8 of the Oregon Constitution.

In the meantime, we can all be proud of the fact that soon, the state of Oregon will be a noose free zone.


--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2021-12-13 20:12:15Last Update: 2021-12-13 21:33:22



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