top of page

Legislative Report - Week of 1/23


Health Care


Criminal Justice


Change in the Rules

By Paula Krane

The Oregon Senate Republicans will now require all legislation in the Senate to be read in full before a final vote.

  • This is a move that will allow the R’s to slow down the D’s agenda

  • This means that not as much work can be accomplished this session.

  • As of now it is the only parliamentary tactic the R’s think they have to encourage the D’s to work with them.

Is this right and will it work only time will tell.

Health Care

By Christa Danielson

SB 420—Brain Injury Navigation Bill

  • This bill had its first hearing in Sen Human Services with testimony from Senators Patterson and Manning and others from the traumatic brain injury community. Overall, the bill is well received and has many endorsements; LWVOR was mentioned as one. The bill will now go to W&Ms.

SB 704 and HB 2558

  • This bill establishes a Governance Board for Universal Health Care and continues the work of the bipartisan Task force on Universal Health care. It directs the Governing Board to create a comprehensive plan to implement Universal Health Care by 2027. 

 HB 2347, 2881, 2882, 2883, 2884, 2885—Opiate Reduction Package

  • These bills expand the use of Narcan and other opioid blockers to reduce death in acute opioid overdose. These medications are usually used under a physician’s supervision, but this bill will allow these life-saving medications to be managed and used in many other settings such as schools and publicly owned buildings such as libraries, etc. These bills have had their first readings in House Behavioral Health and Health Care.  

HB 2458

  • This bill makes conversion therapy Illegal by mental health care professionals for those under 18 years of age by licensed mental health professionals. This bill is in House Behavioral Health and is brought forward by sponsors Nosse and Patterson.


By Nancy Donovan and Debbie Aiona

Governor’s Executive Orders

Action is converging around Governor Kotek’s priority to address the state’s housing emergency. The Governor signed three Executive Orders Governor’s website related to housing production and homelessness. In addition to setting a statewide housing production goal of 36,000 units per year, she established a Housing Production Advisory Council. Staff from the Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS), Department of Land Conservation and Development, (DLCD) the Higher Education Coordinating Committee, and the Building Code Division, are providing support to the Council to recommend an action plan to meet the state’s annual housing production target. Regarding Executive Order 23-02, which declares a homelessness emergency in parts of the state, Benton County adopted a resolution asking the Governor to add Benton County to the list of counties in the executive order. This option is now available to all other counties that were not included in the original Executive Order.     

Oregon Housing Alliance

Oregon Housing Alliance, of which LWVOR is a member, voted to endorse two proposed bills backed by the Network for Oregon Affordable Housing (NOAH) that focus on preserving  existing affordable housing and protecting tenants who live in them. Over the next 10 years, use restrictions on more than 7,500 units will end, with some becoming market rate rental housing, which will impose significant hardship on low-income tenants living in them. The LWVOR Action Committee approved adding its logo to NOAH’s informational handouts shared with legislators on bills: HB 3042 and HB 2653.

Oregon Housing and Community Services

OHCS and Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS) are partnering to support youth experiencing homelessness. OHCS recently completed a $9 million interagency funds transfer to one of ODHS’s Self-Sufficiency Programs --Youth Experiencing Homelessness Program. The program will coordinate statewide planning for delivery of services to youth experiencing homelessness and support local programs. It will also support newer initiatives by investing in activities such as crisis prevention and long-term interventions.

Department of Land Conservation and Development 

Throughout the 2023 legislative session, DLCD will review dozens of bills related to housing production and affordability under consideration by lawmakers. Perhaps the most consequential is HB 2889, which would implement the agency recommendations published in conjunction with OHCS in December 2022 to comprehensively reform the state’s Goal 10 planning process. HB 4006 (2018) requires OHCS to annually provide cities with populations greater than 10,000 data showing the percentage of renter households that are severely rent burdened. It also requires submittal of “Permitted and Produced” surveys to DLCD by February 1 for the previous year. Last week, DLCD published datasets summarizing this information from 2018-2021. Data from 2022 is expected to be published in Spring 2023. Past downloads of “Permitted and Produced” Reports and other required housing reporting can be found on DLCD’s website.

Criminal Justice 

By Marge Easley

Data collection and dissemination have become critically important tools for the Oregon Judicial Department (OJD) and the Criminal Justice Commission (CJC), according to presentations given to the members of the Joint Ways and Means Public Safety Subcommittee on January 24 and 25.  

OJD began a concerted effort for better data collection in 2016 with the rollout of the E-Court program. Data dashboards represent the latest step forward. They graphically show data for criminal filings and caseloads for felony and misdemeanor crimes, aid and assist, expungements, and post-conviction relief. 

Data is critical to further CJC’s mission “to improve the legitimacy, efficiency, and effectiveness of state and local criminal justice systems.” Data is collected from police stops, arrest and corrections information, circuit court cases, specialty court cases, and grant program reports. CJC also uses dashboards to provide real-time data in a user-friendly way. For example, one dashboard illustrated:

  • In 2020 and 2021, Covid-19 led to a significant decrease in police stops and property crimes but a surge in violent crime, particularly murder and aggravated assault. 

  • The onset of Covid led to a 50% decrease in Non-Possession of Controlled Substances arrests and to a 90% decrease in Possession of Controlled Substances arrests. The implementation of BM 110 led to further reductions.

bottom of page