Newletter: Medal of Valor, HP Day, and National Family Month
THE CAPITOL and all of the THINGS
The temperature inside the Capitol got noticeable higher this past week.
In a short summary, the House Republicans are using procedural ways to slow down the massive amount of legislation coming down the pipeline by reading the entirety of every bill before being debated and voted on. There have been an incredible amount of instances where House Republicans have been left out of negotiations, their bills aren’t been worked, and an overall sense of being bulldozed. In retaliation to “reading bills", the Speaker of the House has scheduled multiple Floor sessions.
For example, we were on the Floor for session for 15+ hours in 4 days. Thursday night, we were on the House Floor until 9:30pm. The power struggle between the Majority and the Minority is always felt, and in this session with the Super-Majority and the Super-Minority, it is front and center. I believe there are Constitutional ways to stop or slow down the “tyranny of the majority”, and the House Republicans are united and using them for the good of all Oregonians. The “tyranny of the majority” is an inherent weakness of majority rule in which the majority of an electorate can and does place its own interests above, and at the expense of those in the minority. The quote “elections have consequences” is real and will be felt in the pocketbooks of every Oregon working family across the state after this session. What do we get for that? Time will tell.
Big bills like Cap and Trade, a potential PERS reform bill, and HB 2007 (a big overhaul of diesel engine regulation), and a Paid Family Leave bill are still on the agenda for the last month of the session. The pressure is on for these bills to get through the process and pass before sine die*.
On the other hand, the policy committees (any committee that is not a Joint Committee, Rules, or budget committees) are winding down because the deadline has passed. That means all the Representatives have more time to vote on the House floor or work on some of the priority legislation.
It will only get more intense as we move into June, so Memorial Day weekend came just in time. I will continue to work hard to make sure that District 15 is represented in all of these discussions.
*Sine die (SIGH-nee Dye) is a Latin term that is used in reference to business or proceedings that have been adjourned with no appointed date for resumption.
SPECIAL RECOGNITION OF OREGON STATE TROOPER RECEIVES NATIONAL PUBLIC SAFETY OFFICER MEDAL OF VALOR
Shortly after noon on May 22nd, 2019 - Trooper Nic Cederberg was awarded the National Public Safety Officer Medal of Valor at the White House.
On Christmas morning, 2016, Trooper Cederberg, on patrol alone and without cover, attempted to arrest a desperate murder suspect. The suspect engaged Nic in a close quarters gun battle, with our OSP family member sustaining a dozen gunshot wounds and left clinging to life. That Christmas morning, Nic provided us all with the greatest gift imaginable, his determination and will to survive in the face of impossible odds.
Trooper Cederberg typifies the grit and perseverance of an OSP Trooper, humbly serving with distinction in demanding and difficult circumstances. All of Oregon celebrates his award of the Medal of Valor and the personal story it symbolizes.
Thank you for your service, Trooper Nic Cederberg.
I agree with my colleague Rep. Lynn Findley, R-Vale: “Constitutionally, the kicker is a check on excessive taxation. The Oregon Constitution mandates that the excess revenue be returned to Oregonians; unfortunately, that is not the opinion shared by some of my colleagues in the Legislature. However, I believe that every penny should go back to the hardworking Oregonians who contributed to our economic success.”
Everyday Oregonians deserve their money. Hands off it, legislators.
This week, multiple divisions from HP Headquarters came to the Capitol. The innovations and technologies currently on the market and soon-to-be on the market were on display. From their recycling processes to their print technologies used by NASA in space – at zero gravity!
They were kind enough to engineer 3D printed badges, just for the Capitol staff. The badges have movable parts and even Douglas Fir trees cut-outs.
Creating awareness for our future technology leaders is vital to the continued growth of this industry. Successful engagement is key.
Well done and thank you HP!
On Thursday, HB 3214 passed the Senate by a bipartisan vote of 26-2. This bill would allow stay-at-home parents and caretakers to qualify for a hardship driver’s permit to take family members to medical appointments and their children to school. This bill was my first bill to pass both chambers of the legislature. It now will await the signature of the Governor to become law.
On Wednesday, HB 3213 passed unanimously out of the Joint Transportation Committee. HB 3213 establishes a county road safety corridor pilot program. Our county roads are some of the most beautiful drives in the state, but they are becoming increasingly more dangerous as highway and interstate traffic pushes people to find quicker commutes. This bill would provide local law enforcement with another tool to make our county roads safe.
A big thanks to advocates Molly McCargar and Brenda Frketich for helping with this legislation. Additionally, I really appreciate the help of veteran legislators Representative Bill Post, R-Dist. 25, and Representative Ron Noble, R-Dist. 24 for helping me work this bill.
Cap and Trade
Cap and Trade passed out of the Joint Committee on Carbon Reduction last Friday. I voted no because I felt there were too many unanswered questions with a risk too high to our economy and our working families.
As HB 2020 awaits its day in the Ways and Means Committee, more information is emerging about its potential impacts. The non-partisan Legislative Revenue Office found that the far-reaching Cap and Trade program could decimate the Highway Trust Fund, which funds the upkeep of our roads.
“The Cap and Trade program (in HB 2020) stated two… goals. The first is to reduce CO2 emissions in the state to 45% (below 1990 levels) by the 2035. The second is to extend that reduction to 80% (below 1990 levels) by the year 2050. For the transportation sector these goals translate to a reduction in the combustion of fuel equivalent to all the fuel amounts currently used by Oregon’s light fleet… [A]chieving that reduction in transportation fuel emissions requires complete electrifications of Oregon’s light fleet by 2050. Naturally that transformation occurs gradually over the coming thirty years. As we approach that landmark, the Gas-Tax that has been the staple of Highway funding since 1917, will gradually become quaint until it no longer exists by 2051. Much of the highway funding system is dependent on the gas tax, and in the absence of an alternative funding mechanism, the Highway Fund is likely to experience significant reductions.”
Memorial Day is an American holiday, observed on the last Monday of May, honoring the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military.
Originally known as Decoration Day, it originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971. Many Americans observe Memorial Day by visiting cemeteries or memorials, holding family gatherings and participating in parades.
So please, if you will, take a moment to honor those who served our Country.