HOUSE REPUBLICAN OFFICE
AUGUST 4, 2017 DAILY CLIPS
State sought to plant negative stories about nonprofit
Oregon Health Authority planned to use media to dissuade lawmakers from passing legislation sought by Portland-area FamilyCare over health care rate dispute.
Cinder Butte fire up to 56,000 acres
The fuel source — mixed with hot weather and light wind — allowed the fire to quickly run and by 10 a.m. Thursday it had reached 56,000 acres. The fire is burning mostly on Bureau of Land Management land, but has moved onto private land.
Wildfires jump lines in wind, record heat
Record dry heat and stiff winds helped two wildfires in northeast Jackson County each grow by more than 1,000 acres as flames jumped trails and fire lines, forcing firefighters to pull back from direct attacks. The Blanket Creek fire in the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest nearly doubled in size from Wednesday and was listed Thursday morning at 2,432 acres and just 7 percent contained.
Jefferson fire triples, adding to valley smoke
The Whitewater Fire in the Cascade Range, which is producing much of the smoke visible in Eugene-Springfield, had swelled to 4,579 acres on Thursday, authorities said, sharply up from Wednesday’s estimate of 1,500 acres. A total of 202 fire personnel are battling the Whitewater blaze, using five helicopters, five “masticators,” one engine, three water tenders and six bulldozers. The Willamette National Forest has closed numerous trails and sections of trails in the area.
Wildfire in Jefferson Wilderness spurs road closures, hiker evacuations
A growing wildfire in the Jefferson Wilderness is prompting road closures and hiker evacuations, officials said Thursday night. Beginning Friday morning, Linn County search and rescue teams will evacuate hikers and campers who are not aware of closures in the area, Linn County sheriff’s officials said.
4 Big Questions That Loom Over The 2018 Oregon Governor’s Race
Oregon Public Broadcasting
Oregon Rep. Knute Buehler of Bend on Thursday became the first major candidate to officially announce his candidacy for governor. Democratic Gov. Kate Brown is widely expected to run again, but she’s turned aside questions about her political plans for 2018. Here are four big questions to keep in mind as we enter the early stages of next year’s campaign for governor.
Brown calls Buehler, other opponents ‘Trumps-in-training’
But the Kate Brown Committee, the governor’s ongoing campaign arm, sent out an email from “Team Kate” before noon alerting supporters to Buehler’s announcement and asking for contributions. “We won’t lie, 2016 was a tough year for Democrats across the country,” the message read. “But Oregonians stood up to the hatred and regressive policies of the Trumps-in-training in our state and elected Kate governor.” “Team Kate” says a Republican governor could veto “expanding access to health care, smart environmental policies and women’s reproductive rights.” After naming Buehler in black bold-face letters, the pitch tells supporters their contributions are “critical.”
Republican Knute Buehler faces uphill campaign trail for Oregon governor in 2018
A Republican has not occupied the governor’s mansion since 1987, however, and Democrats hold a significant advantage in registered voters. Republican ex-Blazer Chris Dudley, who came within a percentage point of beating John Kitzhaber in 2010, had name recognition beyond many politicians’ dreams. “The biggest issue is people simply do not know who (Buehler) is,” said Jim Moore, director of the Tom McCall Center for Policy Innovation at Pacific University. ”
Knute Buehler ready for rematch with Brown for governor’s post
Jeanne Atkins, chairwoman of the Democratic Party of Oregon and former secretary of state, said in a statement that Buehler “represents everything we are trying to change in state government.” “Gov. Kate Brown beat him before and she will beat him again,” Atkins said. “…Despite his claims of moderation and ‘going down the middle,’ his actions and votes show he has the interests of a wealthy businessman and is aligned with the core conservatives of the Republican party.”
Rep. Knute Buehler seeks governorship
Buehler said he intended to pursue public pension reform, “restore fiscal sanity to Oregon’s budget,” and work to boost the state’s economy by emphasizing job training and holding back on “excessive, job-killing” regulations.
AGRICULTURE & NATURAL RESOURCES
Oregon wildlife officials to kill 2 wolves at the request of ranchers
The Associated Press
Oregon wildlife officials will kill two adult wolves in northeast Oregon at the request of ranchers who say animals in their pack have preyed on cattle for more than a year. Officials will remove two adult uncollared animals in the Harl Butte pack sometime in the next two weeks.
ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT
Solar farm near Estacada wins approval
Oregon’s largest solar farm west of the Cascades has won approval on a split vote by Clackamas County commissioners. Pacific Northwest Solar LLC plans to put up 35,000 photovoltaic cells on 6-foot-high racks that will convert sunlight into 10 megawatts of power to the Portland General Electric substation in Estacada about two miles away.
State of Oregon now covering health care for undocumented children
“We have a moral obligation to support Oregonians who face disparities accessing health care,” said Huffman, speaking at the Capitol in July. His district includes The Dalles. “Children rise to the top of that list.” Moreno praised the bipartisan support for the bill. “We’re proud of Oregon,” Moreno said. “We’re proud of these legislators.” Other supporters of the bill included Northwest Permanente, Providence Health & Services, and Children First for Oregon. “Oregon is stronger when every child in our state has the opportunity to grow up healthy,” said Dave Underriner, Providence chief executive officer, speaking in July.
Editorial: Unaffiliated voters should get voting in primaries
A primary can be the political womb of a future leader or his or her tomb. Unaffiliated voters in Oregon should rattle the system and throw their weight around by registering to vote in a party primary.
Editorial: Hungry kids can’t learn
Making sure that children have proper nutrition — school district menus include items such as whole-grain oatmeal or pancakes and fresh fruit — is an investment in the future. These children are the next generation of workers, taxpayers, voters and volunteers. Education is the key that unlocks the doors for them, whether they go immediately into the workforce after high school or continue with their education. Making sure that they have the nutrition they need to learn should be a community-wide concern.
Guest: If hotels allow one kind of smoke, they have to allow all of it
Representative Bill Post (R-25)
Ironically many of us in the Oregon Legislature eagerly sought to create a way for a “winery tasting” type setting for legal marijuana calling them “cannabis cafes” and we had at least two bills that I know of that would have allowed “cannabis hotels/bed and breakfast” locations.
We ran into one major roadblock: the anti smoking crowd. They see “smoke is smoke is smoke” and rightly so, based on our “Oregon Indoor Clean Air Act.”
Guest: Rep. Reschke recaps 2017 session
Representative E. Werner Reschke (R-56)
Fortunately, I went to Salem with two important tools: principles and courage. I cast 249 No votes on the House Floor (second most) and never missed a floor vote. I was one of only two legislators out of 90 in the House and Senate, who made this accomplishment. It is an important job, that requires an incredible amount of time, energy and mindshare — a job which I take very seriously. Below is a brief summary of the session.
Portland Water Bills Swell to Cover $500M Treatment Plant
The Associated Press
Portland homeowners are expected to pay about $10 more per month for water throughout the next 16 years to cover the cost of a new filtration treatment plant approved unanimously by the City Council. The action taken by City Council on Wednesday was the most expensive option presented to the council to fix the problem. The total cost of the facility is predicted at $350 million to $500 million. Construction will take at least a decade.
OREGONIANS IN CONGRESS
Senator Wyden is asking for a wildfire funding fix to cover flooding and natural disasters
Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley are asking for a wildfire funding fix to address costs for flooding events and other natural disasters that ensue on burn scared land.
Rep. Schrader: Small bipartisan fixes on health care are achievable
“There does seem to be a movement of members to come together,” said Schrader, who has actively promoted bipartisan cooperation. “We showed our leaders there are members on both sides who actually want to get something done.” Schrader spoke about health care, and more, to a town hall meeting attended by about 150 people Tuesday night (Aug. 1) at the Milwaukie Center. Schrader is part of a group of about 40 members, equally split between Democrats and Republicans, trying to put forward proposals less controversial than outright repeal, which has mustered little public support.
US Economy Adds 209,000 Jobs In July; Unemployment Dips To 4.3 Percent
National Public Radio
NPR’s Chris Arnold says “this latest report suggests that the U.S. economy is in pretty good shape.” Food services, drinking places, professional and business services and health care all saw gains. The average workweek was unchanged at 34.5 hours. Average hourly wages rose by 9 cents, to $26.36. “Wage growth remains sluggish,” NPR’s Arnold says. “Average hourly earnings were up 2.5 percent from a year ago. And most economists would like to see wages rising more quickly.”
Leak probes triple under Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions says
The Washington Post
Sessions said in the first six months of this year, the Department of Justice had received nearly as many criminal referrals involving unauthorized disclosures of classified information than it had received in the past three years combined. Though he did not say if it resulted in a criminal referral, Sessions cited in particular a recent disclosure to The Washington Post of transcripts of President Donald Trump’s conversations with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and another with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. “This culture of leaking must stop,” Sessions said.