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On this day, June 16, 1873, President Grant signed an executive order that permitted Chief Joseph and the Nez Perce to live in the Wallowa Valley, Oregon, to perpetuity.

Also on this day, June 16, 1877, The Nez Perce War began in the northwestern US. The First Squadron of the First Regiment, the oldest cavalry unit in the US, fought the Apaches and the Nez Perces.




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Juneteenth
Wednesday, June 19, 2024 at 12:00 am
Juneteenth
Celebrated on the anniversary of June 19, 1865, when in the wake of the American Civil War, Major General Gordon Granger ordered the final enforcement of the Emancipation Proclamation in Texas.



Lincoln County Fair
Thursday, July 4, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.thelincolncountyfair.com
July 4-6
Lincoln County Fairgrounds



Independence Day
Thursday, July 4, 2024 at 11:59 pm
Independence Day
USA



Marion County Fair
Thursday, July 11, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://www.co.marion.or.us/CS/Fair
July 11-14
Oregon State Fair & Expo Center



Jackson County Fair
Tuesday, July 16, 2024 at 8:00 am
TheExpo.com
July 16-21
Jackson County Fairgrounds - The Expo



Columbia County Fair
Wednesday, July 17, 2024 at 8:00 am
columbiacountyfairgrounds.com
July 17-21
Columbia County Fairgrounds



Linn County Fair
Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://www.linncountyfair.com/
July 18-20
Linn County Expo Center



Washington County Fair
Friday, July 19, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://www.bigfairfun.com/
July 19-28
Washington County Fairgrounds - Westside Commons



Coos County Fair
Tuesday, July 23, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.cooscountyfair.com
July 23-27
Coos County Fairgrounds



Curry County Fair
Wednesday, July 24, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.eventcenteronthebeach.com
July 24-27
Curry County Fairgrounds - Event Center on the Beach



Hood River County Fair
Wednesday, July 24, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.hoodriverfairgrounds.com
July 24-27
Hood River County Fairgrounds



Jefferson County Fair
Wednesday, July 24, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.jcfair.fun
July 24-27
Jefferson County Fair Complex



Lane County Fair
Wednesday, July 24, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.atthefair.com
July 24-28
Lane Events Center



Clatsop County Fair
Tuesday, July 30, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://clatsopcofair.com/
July 30 - August 3
Clatsop County Fair & Expo



Malheur County Fair
Tuesday, July 30, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.malheurcountyfair.com
July 30 - August 3
Malheur County Fairgrounds - Desert Sage Event Center



Benton County Fair & Rodeo
Wednesday, July 31, 2024 at 8:00 am
bceventcentercorvallis.net
July 31 - August 3, 2024
Benton County Event Center & Fairgrounds



Deschutes County Fair
Wednesday, July 31, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://expo.deschutes.org/
July 31 - August 4
Deschutes County Fair & Expo Center



Union County Fair
Wednesday, July 31, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.unioncountyfair.org
July 31 - August 3
Union County Fairgrounds



Yamhill County Fair
Wednesday, July 31, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.co.yamhill.or.us/fair
July 31 - August 3
Yamhill County Fairgrounds



Klamath County Fair
Thursday, August 1, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://www.klamathcountyfair.com/
August 1-4
Klamath County Fair



Wallowa County Fair
Friday, August 2, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://co.wallowa.or.us/community-services/county-fair/
August 2-10
Wallowa County Fairgrounds



Baker County Fair
Sunday, August 4, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.bakerfair.com
August 4-9
Baker County Fairgrounds



Harney County Fair
Sunday, August 4, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.harneyfairgrounds.com
August 4-9
Harney County Fairgrounds



Sherman County Fair
Sunday, August 4, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.shermancountyfairfun.com
August 19-24
Sherman County Fairgrounds



Crook County Fair
Wednesday, August 7, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.crookcountyfairgrounds.com
August 7-10
Crook County Fairgrounds



Douglas County Fair
Wednesday, August 7, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.douglasfairgrounds.com
August 7-10
Douglas County Fairgrounds Complex



Grant County Fair
Wednesday, August 7, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.grantcountyoregon.net
August 7-10
Grant County Fairgrounds



Josephine County Fair
Wednesday, August 7, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://www.josephinecountyfairgrounds.com/
August 7-11
Josephine County Fairgrounds & Events Center



Polk County Fair
Wednesday, August 7, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://www.co.polk.or.us/fair
August 7-10
Polk County Fairgrounds



Tillamook County Fair
Wednesday, August 7, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.tillamookfair.com
August 7-10
Tillamook County Fairgrounds



Umatilla County Fair
Wednesday, August 7, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.umatillacountyfair.net
August 7-10
Umatilla County Fairgrounds



Wheeler County Fair
Wednesday, August 7, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.wheelercountyoregon.com/fair-board
August 7-10
Wheeler County Fairgrounds



Clackamas County Fair
Tuesday, August 13, 2024 at 8:00 am
clackamascountyfair.com
August 13-17
Clackamas County Event Center



Morrow County Fair
Wednesday, August 14, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://www.co.morrow.or.us/fair
August 14-17
Morrow County Fairgrounds



Wasco County Fair
Thursday, August 15, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://www.wascocountyfair.com
August 15-17
Wasco County Fairgrounds



Gilliam County Fair
Thursday, August 29, 2024 at 8:00 am
http://www.co.gilliam.or.us/government/fairgrounds
August 29-31
Gilliam County Fairgrounds



Lake County Fair
Thursday, August 29, 2024 at 8:00 am
https://www.lakecountyor.org/government/fair_grounds.php
August 29 - September 1
Lake County Fairgrounds



Oregon State Fair
Saturday, August 31, 2024 at 8:00 am
www.oregonstateexpo.org
August 31 - September 9
Oregon State Fair & Exposition Center



Linn Laughs LIVE with Adam Corolla
Saturday, September 7, 2024 at 5:00 pm
Linn Laughs LIVE with Adam Corolla 5pm-9pm
Albany, OR


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Portland Catholic Archbishop Sounds Off on HB 2002
“The passage of HB 2002 does not need to be inevitable”

Aatholic Archbishop of Portland Alexander Sample has released a statement on HB 2002 which is pending before the Oregon Legislature. The bill has several parts -- many controversial -- but one of the most controversial is that the bill, according to the Legislative Policy and Research Office, "modifies provisions protecting privacy of minor's reproductive health care information and permitted disclosure of information to minor's parent or legal guardian."

Archbishop Sample's statement outlines five major points.

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

The bill has passed the Oregon House by a vote of 36-23, but has stalled in the inactive Oregon Senate, due to the Republican walkout.


--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2023-06-02 19:35:22Last Update: 2023-06-10 18:00:36



Joint Committee on Oversight and Accountability Holds First Meeting
Anonymous tip line available

The Oregon Joint Committee on Oversight and Accountability held its first meeting June 1. Members of the Oregon Legislature and members of the public were invited to bring their experiences and observations related to state government and where it requires greater oversight.

Senate Republican Leader Tim Knopp (R-Bend) lead the meeting, and said, “In light of multiple ongoing corruption scandals, we sent a letter to President Wagner and Speaker Rayfield in April requesting the creation of this committee. Democrats were extended three separate invitations to join us. All went unanswered. Republican and Independent members will utilize our own resources to conduct committee meetings until Presiding Officers deem accountability and oversight worthy of their attention, time, and nonpartisan staff. President Wagner has frequently applauded the Oregon Legislature’s rigorous committee process. Our hope is that he and other Democrat leaders see the value in this committee and agree to fully resource it.”

The letter requesting formation of the committee, emphasized, “The OLCC’s actions have been greatly covered in the news over the past several months, with several allegations leading the public to believe this agency is corrupt. We must resolve these issues with full transparency… We understand that in certain instances, investigations are being conducted by the Department of Justice. This is not sufficient. We must provide the standard of oversight and accountability that our Constitution and the people of Oregon expect.”

The first meeting was mostly organizational with the adoption of committee rules and an informational presentation by Reagan Knopp, staffing the committee with Russ Walker, described a website in the making.

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

“We must hold our state government to a higher standard of transparency. House Republicans are committed to holding state agencies accountable. Last night we began this important work,” said House Republican Leader Vikki Breese-Iverson (R-Prineville).

Also serving on the committee is Senate Independent Leader Brian Boquist (I-Dallas), Representative Greg Smith (R-Heppner), Representative E. Werner Reschke (R-Klamath Falls), and Senator Dick Anderson (R-Lincoln City). There are three vacant seats for House Democrats, and three vacant seats for Senate Democrats.

Each member and visiting legislators expressed the need for transparency in government and engage with the public that have observed matters needing investigation. Even though Democrat legislators chose not to show up, their public represented them venting their frustration over the walkout. None spoke to the agenda, or on the issue of accountability for the Senate being conducted in violation of the constitution and statutes, or why the state should give minors full consent over their medical treatments without parents’ knowledge. They all had the same script – it’s your job to show up to work.

If you would like to submit an anonymous tip on government corruption, call our tipline at 541-213-0201. To view a live stream of the meeting go here. [Democrat leaders removed the video.]


--Donna Bleiler

Post Date: 2023-06-02 19:14:44Last Update: 2023-06-05 12:31:58



Why We Are Denying Quorum In Oregon
Government is not a parent

The Washington Examiner published in their Restoring America column, an article by Senators Daniel Bonham and Kim Thatcher titled “Why we’re denying quorum in Oregon’s Senate.”

In the article they state, “Our motivation is simple: We are protesting the lawlessness and corruption of the Democrats who have controlled our state for decades. This is the only tool we have left to stand up and defend Oregonians…Without the first walkout in Oregon’s history in 1897, we may not have the initiative and referendum process we do today — one of the most direct and democratic aspects of our state Constitution.”

They contend that Measure 113 was passed to scare them away from denying quorum, but it has backfired. “We work for Oregonians, not the government…Our decision to deny quorum now is the result of two immoral bills pushed by Democrats.” Both bills are an attack on the family removing parents’ rights.

House Bill 2395, would create government-sanctioned secrecy between parents and their children, thereby driving a wedge between the family unit by removing parental consent for children to have substance abuse treatment and mental health services, when parents should be informed of all medical and health services their children need.

House Bill 2002, would allow a child of any age to be able to have an abortion without parental knowledge, and change Oregon's current abortion laws to remove any requirement for healthcare providers to notify parents if a minor has an abortion. It would also allow minors to have irreversible sex-change treatments and procedures without their parent’s knowledge.

“Democrats in power are willing to put the full force of government behind this controversial concept, prioritizing their special interests over the well-being of Oregon families,” Bonham and Thatcher stated.

They want to make Oregon a “transgender tourism” state, adding to already being an “abortion tourism” state. House Bill 2002 would give protections to doctors who perform sex-change surgeries in other states, in violation of their state laws, and allows them to “seek refuge” here so they will not lose their medical license, even though they may have lost it in another state. Oregonians and insurance companies will be paying for this.

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

House Bill 2002 comes with a $6.2 million price tag, but that doesn’t include the cost the insurance companies will pass along in increased premiums. Insurers will have to cover expenses for transition surgeries and years of treatment will have an astronomical impact on health premiums. Actuaries also factor in increased mental disorders and gender dysphoria as well as increased cases of depression and managed care.

The article states, “Democrats claim this is an expansion of Oregonians’ “rights,” but what it would really do is open up young girls and women to additional harm. Whoever gets an underage girl pregnant needs to be in jail. Instead, these criminals would be able to coach young women and girls about how to get an abortion, destroying the evidence of wrongdoing.”

HB 2002 repeals the protections in ORS 167.820 - concealing the birth of an infant. It would no longer be a crime to conceal the birth of an infant or to prevent a determination of whether it was born dead or alive. This allows for live abortions, abortions after birth, or for a newborn to be bought and sold.

Senator Bonham writes in his newsletter, “As soon as the government steps in, insidious opportunities for pedophiles, sex traffickers, and kidnappers crop up… Parents are financially, legally, and morally responsible for their children. This should be an inalienable understanding about the relationship between parent and child. I find it extraordinarily disturbing that the majority party seeks to protect their activist agenda at the expense of children's lives. The government is not a parent; it never has been and never will be.”


--Donna Bleiler

Post Date: 2023-06-02 13:23:02Last Update: 2023-06-01 23:53:52



Portland Settles Sidewalk Blockage Suit
The lawsuit pits disabled persons against homeless persons

The City of Portland has settled a federal lawsuit with several persons claiming that "Federal disability access laws were enacted to provide persons with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate fully in civic life." According to the complaint filed in federal court, the lawsuit was brought "to address the City’s systemic failure to provide full and equal access to its sidewalks to Plaintiffs and similarly situated persons with mobility disabilities."

The complaint cites the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. The first named plaintiff, whence the suit gets it's name is Tiana Tozer who -- according to court documents -- "lives in the Irvington neighborhood of Portland, Oregon and works in Downtown Portland. Ms. Tozer has a mobility disability that limits her ability to walk."

The lawsuit pits disabled persons against homeless persons. Simply put, "The City has failed and continues to fail to maintain its sidewalks clear of debris and tent encampments, which is necessary to make its sidewalks readily accessible to people with mobility disabilities. Indeed, a substantial number of the City’s sidewalks—particularly those in the City’s busiest business corridors—do not comply with applicable federal statutes and regulations because they are blocked by tent encampments and attendant debris, rendering the sidewalks inaccessible, dangerous, and unsanitary for people with mobility disabilities."

The complaint offers some detail about some of the worst locations. "Simply, the City’s sidewalks, when viewed in their entirety, are not readily accessible to and usable by persons with mobility disabilities due to the City’s failure to maintain clear sidewalks free of debris and tent encampments. Indeed, the City’s most glaring violations are centered in Portland’s Old Town, Chinatown, Downtown, and Pearl District areas, as well as locations on the City’s east side, including the Central Eastside Industrial District, the Lloyd District, and the areas surrounding Laurelhurst Park, Lone Fir Cemetery, and Sunnyside Elementary School.

According to the settlement agreement, the city will: The Portland City Council enacted an emergency ordinance to approve the settlement.


--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2023-06-01 22:38:37Last Update: 2023-06-01 23:19:55



Oregon Democrat Leaders Display Desperation
Republican Senators threatened with $325 per day fine

Virtually every day articles are release decrying what the Senate Republicans are doing to government by staying out of the capitol. Here is one week's sampling of their desperate attempts to sway public opinion to ignore the real issue. All can be read here. On the opposite side, the Oregon Republican Senators have one response:

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

Senate President Rob Wagner announced on the Senate Floor today that he would compel the attendance of absent members and impose a fine of $325 per day beginning Monday June 5th, 2023.

Senate Republican Leader Tim Knopp (R-Bend) released the following statement: “One thing remains clear: President Wagner is insistent on facilitating an unlawful, uncompromising, unconstitutional agenda. Once again, he has retaliated against members who are exercising their right to peacefully protest his own unlawful, hyperpartisan actions.”

“Senate Republicans don’t feel compelled to entertain his political theater. In fact, we suggest President Wagner pay our fines since it is his behavior that galvanized our protest. “

“If Democrats want us to provide a quorum before June 25th, they must agree to follow Senate Rules, follow the law, and work to put forward constitutional, bipartisan bills that don’t violate a parents’ sacred right to love and care for their child. Senate Republicans will not be bullied into allowing the lawlessness to continue.”


--Donna Bleiler

Post Date: 2023-06-01 16:49:53Last Update: 2023-06-01 23:26:20



Governor Focus Is On Returning To Status Quo
Republicans will not abandon parents rights

Oregon Governor Tina Kotek attempted to insert herself into discussions on the pause in the Oregon Senate but didn’t come prepared to make good on her commitment to serve Oregonians – all Oregonians, Senate Republican Leader Tim Knopp (R-Bend) said.

Democrat leaders blast Republicans for not showing up to pass their agenda. Representative Daniel Nguyen (D-Lake Oswego, SW Portland) said, “When Senate Republicans refuse to respect our democracy and take a vote on critical legislation, Oregonians – many who have small businesses – are the ones who pay the price.”

There is a growing development that this session could be the least expensive for small businesses there has been in many years. One small business owner commented to Northwest Observer that he still has not recovered from the lock down, and he has never seen a session that ends with taxpayers and small businesses better off.

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

Senator Knopp stated, “Republicans entered good-faith discussions with the Governor over the last several days. Our goal was to find a bipartisan resolution for the end of Session resulting in the passage of substantially bipartisan budgets and bills. Unfortunately, the Governor was focused on a return to the status quo: an agenda that is unlawful, uncompromising, and unconstitutional.”

Perhaps the Governor is concerned with the number of bills that will be found unlawful that were pushed through by the majority party without a single Republican vote. Senator Suzanne Weber (R-Tillamook) and rural legislators filed legal action against the Senate President and Secretary that is in Circuit Court now. Rural Senators have filed numerous constitutional and statutory complaints against the President and Secretary since January 2023.

The Governor may be facing another resignation as accusations are mounting against Senate President Wagner. He is accused of denying medical absences for Republican Senators while excusing the same for Democrats. Others were refused religious accommodation that has been granted for over 160 years, and still others were excused. Further complaints include refusal to adjust and meet Oregon Constitution and statutes regarding plain language requirements. Even the Legislative Counsel has opinioned that this type of complaint must be investigated.

“If Democrats want us to provide a quorum before June 25th,” Knopp said, “they must agree to follow Senate Rules, follow the law, and work to put forward constitutional, bipartisan bills that don’t violate a parents’ sacred right to love and care for their child. In the meantime, we will continue to work every day on behalf of the Oregonians we took an oath to represent.”


--Donna Bleiler

Post Date: 2023-06-01 10:46:45Last Update: 2023-06-01 02:17:08



Oregon Democrats Announce $4 Billion Public Safety Package
Priority safety bills differ on what it will take

Oregon Democrat legislative leaders announce more than $4 billion for the Public Safety and Accountability Budget framework for their Safer Oregon Agenda. If approved, the package would support core law enforcement agencies and make targeted investments in keeping Oregon families safe and addressing serious crime, including: The Legislature will also be directing significant resources to the Oregon Public Defense System to ensure a fair legal system, and investing in behavioral health crisis response services through omnibus legislation like House Bill 2395, which would address the fentanyl crisis in a targeted and strategic manner to reduce drug trafficking.

This Safer Oregon Agenda includes 13 bills with additional funding requests for coordination between the state and local law enforcement to address retail theft rings of an unspecified amount, funding $6 million for Children’s Advocacy Centers to prevent sexual abuse, and $10 million funding for the Oregon Domestic and Sexual Violence Services Fund.

At the opening of the session, the Oregon House Republican Caucus announced their 2023 priorities. One of four priorities was Supporting Law Enforcement and Increasing Community Safety. That package included: Then in March the House Republican Caucus proposed the Safe Schools Package offering seven bills with two having bipartisan support. They proposed common sense safe guards for schools and a study related to hiring retired police officer to provide security in schools. That was followed in April with a Safe Communities Package, which laid out 16 Senate bills that had very little cost.

Early March Senate Republicans offered three bills requested by victims that would collectively support victims of sex crimes and promote justice after Richard Gillmore, a serial rapist of at least 9 victims was released from prison. “We have three bills that we think are critically important in keeping Oregonians safe and keeping violent perpetrators in prison,” said Senator Knopp.

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

Very few of the Republican bills received a hearing. Now “safety” is being formulated on Democrat terms to create public interest. A new bill in the package is HB 3443, which prohibits landlords from terminating lease or taking other specified actions due to status of tenant as victim of bias crime. Senate committees continue to pass bills without Republican representation staking up bills for a floor vote. They also made sure to include the controversial firearms bills, HB 2572 and HB 2005. A list of the bills can be viewed here.

“The people of Oregon were loud and clear that making our streets and communities safer must be one of our top priorities this session,” said Senator Floyd Prozanski (D-Springfield & Eugene). “With this package, we are taking direct aim at the root causes of crime and improving law enforcement response to ensure every Oregonian feels safe and secure wherever they live in our state.”

Senate Republican Leader Tim Knopp (R-Bend) agreed with the priority, but differs on how to resolve Oregon’s unsafe environment.


--Donna Bleiler

Post Date: 2023-05-31 12:09:36Last Update: 2023-06-01 15:22:57



Oregon Food Bank Gets Political
Nonprofits are prohibited from any political campaigning

The Oregon Food Bank tweeted something at 5:00 PM on May 26, 2023 that is turning some heads.

"Senators who walk off the job are walking away from their responsibility to the million+ Oregonians who will seek food assistance this year. Tell our legislators to do what’s right and come back to work on behalf of people facing hunger in Oregon." declared the tweet.

The tweet and other messaging sent from OFB were referring to a bill that they are urging a vote on that is currently stuck in the legislature due to the Oregon Senate Republicans walking out in protest of controversial legislation being pushed by the Democrats.

Republican Representive Ed Diehl (HD-17) tweeted in response, "Is this really an appropriate position to take for a taxpayer funded operation? How about asking the Democrat Senators to seek compromise, seek common ground, instead of shoving wildly unpopular legislation down our throats? I think you are out of line by taking sides on this issue."

Nonprofit entities are prohibited from any political campaigning, according to the IRS. Many observers are wondering if some Oregon nonprofits are disobeying the law.

Non profits such as The Oregon Food Bank are also required to provide transparency of their operations to the public.

These days, in the age of information, this information is easily accessible online. Susannah Morgan is the CEO of OFB and makes $199,231 a year. There are six other paid directors of OFB that make six-figure salaries.

They spent $9,482 in one year in lobbying expenses, which doesn't seem to include $112K salary to Moira Bowman, director of advocacy. The Department of Justice, Charitable Activities regulates charitable activities in Oregon, including nonprofit corporations organized for a public benefit.


--Ben Fisher

Post Date: 2023-05-31 07:43:03Last Update: 2023-05-31 10:42:53



Oregon Hospital Rule Changes Proposed
Linn, Marion counties want state mental hospital rules changes

Linn County Oregon has announced that they are joining with Marion County in asking for changes in how long criminal defendants can be held at the Oregon State Mental Hospital. Commissioners Roger Nyquist, Sherrie Sprenger and Will Tucker have all agreed.

In September 2022, a federal judge ruled that criminal defendants could not be housed at the hospital for more than one year. The decision also means anyone charged with a misdemeanor cannot be housed at the state hospital and those services must be provided at the county level.

According to a letter to Gov. Kotek and David Baden interim director of the Oregon Health Authority, Marion County Commissioners Colm Willis, Kevin Cameron and Danielle Bethell contend that decision, “essentially ended all civil commitments to the state hospital and has left more individuals with untreated behavioral health needs requiring a hospital level of care in our communities.”

Commissioner Nyquist said the state is failing to adequately operate a state mental hospital that meets the statewide needs. He added the mental health issues are a key factor in why many people are homeless. He said the state must add capacity to meet those needs.

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

Commissioner Sprenger, who previously served as a state representative, said reducing the number of beds at the state hospital has been a legislative policy statement for several years.

Marion County and now Linn County, are asking:
--Ben Fisher

Post Date: 2023-05-30 19:06:12Last Update: 2023-05-30 19:20:31



Republicans Blast Senate President Wagner
“This is not good faith bipartisanship”

The Oregon State Senate Republican Caucus have released a memo declaring Senate President Rob Wagner’s recent actions in the state capitol as unlawful, uncompromising, and unconstitutional.

Actions they are saying began long before the constitutional walkout protest.

“Democratic majority rule is constrained by laws and the provisions of our Constitution. When the majority breaks these laws and willingly chooses to ignore them, they are in violation of their sacred oath of office and trampling on the very mechanisms that maintain a healthy representative democracy. It is our duty to protect these mechanisms of the law and vigorously hold them accountable. Rob Wagner is driving representative democracy off a cliff. We will not merely be a speed bump to these reckless and partisan violations of our laws,” said Senate Republican Leader Tim Knopp (R-Bend)."

The Senate Republican have pointed out some highlights:

Eliminating Public Hearing:

Rob Wagner has allowed an extremely partisan bill, SB 393, to pass out of committee without a public hearing. There is no greater example of driving democracy into a ditch by allowing bills to pass without holding a public hearing.

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

Silencing Oregonians that are represented by Republicans:

Rob Wagner killed the entire Senate Republican Equitable Oregon agenda. He did this despite Republicans and Independents representing nearly 2 million Oregonians and roughly 90% of Oregon’s natural resource lands. Later, Republicans attempted to bring 75 bills to the floor for consideration and Rob Wagner led his Caucus in voting no on each of these critical discussions. This is not good faith bipartisanship.

Refusing Common Sense Bipartisanship:

Rob Wagner refuses Republican and Independent legislators requests to set up a bipartisan, bicameral, even-numbered committee on oversight and accountability.


--Ben Fisher

Post Date: 2023-05-30 16:38:32Last Update: 2023-05-30 16:53:12



Oregon House Refers Ranked Choice Voting to Ballot
Oregonians want election integrity

Oregon House passed House Bill 2004 with bipartisan support, which would establish a plan for implementing ranked choice voting (RVC) in Oregon, for voter consideration.

RCV requires voters to rank candidates by preference instead of voting for just one person. A candidate wins by receiving a majority of the first-preference votes cast. When there is no majority winner, this method allows for an instant runoff. The candidate with the lowest number of first-preference votes is eliminated and their vote is transferred to their second preference candidate. This process continues until a candidate achieves a majority of the votes cast.

Supporters claim if approved, this legislation would: Opponents are questioning:


Health Insurance Rates to Rise Again in Oregon
Reinsurance has now lowered rates for 6 straight years

The Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services (DCBS) has announced that health insurance companies have filed 2024 health insurance rate requests for individual and small group markets, and it looks like rates will rise again.

In the individual market, six companies submitted rate change requests ranging from an average 3.5 percent to 8.5 percent increase, for a weighted average increase of 6.2 percent. That average increase is slightly lower than last year’s requested weighted average increase of 6.7 percent.

In the small group market, eight companies submitted rate change requests ranging from an average 0.8 percent to 12.4 percent increase, for a weighted average increase of 8.1 percent, which is higher than last year’s requested 6.9 percent average increase.

DCBS says that the Oregon Reinsurance Program is meant to help stabilize the market and lower rates. Reinsurance has now lowered rates by at least 6 percent for the sixth straight year.

You can view the full list of rate change requests online.

“We continue to have a strong and competitive insurance marketplace with at least four carriers offering plans in every Oregon county,” said Insurance Commissioner and DCBS Director Andrew Stolfi. “In light of the high inflation and increasing labor costs across the country, we are encouraged that the individual market’s overall average requests were lower than last year. We still have a lot of options for Oregonians to choose from and the Oregon Reinsurance Program continues to allow Oregonians to find reasonable rates.”

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

Virtual public hearings about the 2024 requested health insurance rates will be held July 17-18 from 1:30-4:30 p.m.

A web address to watch the public hearings will be posted online.

At the hearings, each insurance company will provide a brief presentation about its rate increase requests, answer questions from Division of Financial Regulation (DFR) staff, and hear public comment from Oregonians. The public also has the opportunity to comment on the proposed rates at any time online now through June 30.

“We look forward to putting these rate requests through a rigorous public review, and we encourage the public to join the virtual public hearings and provide feedback on their health insurance plans,” Stolfi said.

The requested rates are for plans that comply with the Affordable Care Act for small businesses and individuals who buy their own coverage rather than getting it through an employer. For the second year in a row, every county has at least four companies available for people to buy insurance on the individual market. Deschutes County, which has four companies in 2023, is proposed to have five in 2024.

Over the next two months, the division will analyze the requested rates to ensure they adequately cover Oregonians’ health care costs. DFR must review and approve rates before they are charged to policyholders.

Preliminary decisions are expected to be announced in July, and final decisions will be made in August after the public hearings and comment period ends.


--Ben Fisher

Post Date: 2023-05-28 13:26:57Last Update: 2023-05-28 13:46:46



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