Legislative Report - Week of 2/5
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The 2024 short session runs Feb. 5 through March 10th. Bills in most committees must be scheduled for a work session by Feb. 12 and acted on by Feb. 19th in the first chamber. The legislative calendar is posted on the Oregon Legislature website.
By Norman Turrill, Governance Coordinator, and Team
Senate and House Rules Committee
Senate Rule Committee
SB 1540 requests the Public Records Advisory Council to study fees charged for public records requests.
SB 1538 is an election law clean-up bill that makes many changes.
House Rules Committee
HB 4021 requires the Governor to fill a vacancy in the office of U.S. Senator by appointment within 30 days until a special election can fill the vacancy.
HB 4027 requires the Oregon Government Ethics Commission to study Oregon’s government ethics laws. (Placeholder relating to government ethics.)
HB 4030 requires the Oregon Government Ethics Commission to study public meetings. (Placeholder relating to public meetings.)
HB 4031 requires the Public Records Advisory Council to study public records. (Placeholder relating to public records.)
HB 4032 removes the requirement that the word “incumbent” appear on the ballot with the name of incumbent candidates for the Supreme Court, Court of Appeals, Oregon Tax Court, and circuit court.
HB 4117 authorizes the Oregon Government Ethics Commission to issue advisory opinions on the application of the public meetings law. Correction to a bill passed in 2023 session.
Senate Committee on Education
SB 1502 requires public schools and college boards to livestream their meetings and post the meeting recordings on their websites and social media sites. Allows remote testimony for most school and college board meetings.
Campaign Finance and Redistricting
The LWV of Oregon has endorsed and is actively circulating IP 9 on Campaign Finance and IP 14 on Redistricting. Petitions can be downloaded, printed, signed and returned by mail from the Honest Elections website for IP 9 and the People Not Politicians website for IP 14. Both initiative petitions are due to be filed by July 5, 2024 with the Secretary of State.
Elections, Cybersecurity, Synthetic Media (aka AI), and EPAB
By Rebecca Gladstone
For the first week of session this news includes committee bills we’re working on / watching and news from the quarterly EPAB Meeting.
Artificial Intelligence “synthetic media” bills
Several bills will address this hot issue.
SB 1571 altering campaign ads with artificial intelligence, provides definitions, compliance requirements, enforcement provisions, and penalties for. We are revising testimony for the -1 amendment, which replaces “artificial intelligence” with “synthetic media”. Thanks to Sen. Woods for inviting LWVOR to work on this campaign ad bill. The public hearing is posted for Feb. 13, moved from Joint Information Management to Senate Rules. LWVOR will support, with testimony to be shared on submission.
SB 1546 3rd party Exec Dept IT study, lineup is underway for which offices should not be subject to this study, addressing constitutional definitions of the Executive Department.
HB 4153 artificial intelligence glossary Task Force, (this is another AI TF**) this one for studying, collecting, and defining terms and definitions, for use in legislation and statute. Professional organizations were well prepared in the public hearing, sharing thanks to bill sponsors for inclusion in early collaboration. Increasing understanding is a laudable goal and we expect to support it, if need be.
**Governor Kotek’s Oregon State Government AI Advisory Council is contacting members now.
HB 4152 EIS cyber assets security study. Enterprise Information Services to study just how secure our cyber assets are. This hasn’t come up for a hearing yet, but watch Wednesday’s hearing video, 50.00 minutes in, which highlights a learning opportunity from the Joint Information Management and Technology committee. “Estonia’s Digital Journey”, shows how Estonia is avoiding hacking and ransomware cyber-attacks while increasing government efficiency. This committee has been reporting on these problems, refreshing here to see solutions at work. This calls for further study and could fit right into this bill.
HB 4019 US President and VP electors, set scheduling and process. No surprises are expected, but since LWV has a longstanding position to abolish the electoral college, we will be watching this.
HB 4024 campaign finance placeholder bill. LWVOR is actively working on IP 9, for campaign contribution limits and transparency, watching this bill. See Oregon power players in business, labor are negotiating a campaign finance package, OPB, Feb 9, 2024. LWVOR is actively working on IP 9 with Honest Elections.
HB 4026: We are watching this call for the SoS to study how to improve voter access in Oregon, in the shortest concept ever seen in this portfolio, no details on specific purpose, impetus, or funding.
SB 1538: We’ll be researching content, prospects and support for this bill to increase Voters’ Pamphlet languages from 5 to 10. A public hearing is set for Feb 13, then slated for Joint Ways and Means.
SB 1577: We will comment on this Automatic Voter Registration for students applying to Oregon public higher ED schools. We laud the concept of winnowing down to reach the last 7% or so of Oregon’s unregistered voters. This bill needs more work, though.
HB 4078, to “develop and implement a standardized way… to electronically create, collect, use, maintain, disclose, transfer and access student data”, may help further work for SB 1577. See the Education LR.
SB 1574 Abuse of a corpse would not usually catch attention here, but it could be relevant to handling personal data in other legislation.
The mission is to eliminate obstacles to accessing Oregon’s online resources, aligning with the EIS framework. This state group meets quarterly to oversee state websites’ administration. Rebecca Gladstone, appointed as a public member, attends listing LWVOR affiliation. A new public member has joined, representing business perspective, as an owner.
There were significant links to the week’s bills. See HB 4152 calling for a study of how secure our cyber assets are.
The EPAB shifted the biennial benchmark survey from 2 to every 4 years, since user sentiment is not expected to alter much to warrant more frequency, and since this could enable study sooner for historically underserved groups.
E-commerce “Prompt Pay” integrations proceed. Compare our HB 4152, in cybersecurity, to “Estonia’s Digital Journey", hearing video, 50.00 minutes in. Estonia’s digital technology is far ahead of Oregon, unified after serious nationwide cyber attacks unified their resolve to improve.
2024 investment areas include multilingual support. SB 1538 above calls for increasing Voters’ Pamphlet access from 5-10 foreign languages.