The 2019 Oregon legislative session has begun
The 80th Legislative Assembly convened Jan. 22 to begin its constitutionally mandated 160 days of work. Easing into the first week, legislators held informational hearings and worked non-controversial bills. For 16 new House members and two new Senators, this also was orientation week.
Of note, Democrats hold a supermajority in both chambers; 38 out of 60 in the House, 18 out of 30 in the Senate. How this translates: Democrats can pass revenue-raising measures without any Republican votes. The last time Oregon saw this type of supermajority was in 2009 when the majority party advanced 15 separate 36/18 votes.
The Salem Area Mass Transit District contracts with CFM Strategic Communications, Inc. for federal and state consulting and communication services. The District has identified several areas on which CFM will be focusing this session:
- Protect against reductions in senior and disabled transit funding.
- Monitor any discussions on SB 10 implementation, which changes the District’s governance from an elected to a governor-appointed board.
- Investigate opportunities to convert existing business energy tax credits into Clean Fuels credits and sell on the marketplace.
- Monitor opportunities to increase investments in electric vehicle transit infrastructure throughout the state.
- Monitor discussions around legislation that create a carbon-trading program to be regulated by the Department of Environmental Quality and other state agencies.
The 2019 legislative session started earlier than in previous years. Historically, many of the sessions have stretched over the July 4 holiday. But now, with a June 30 completion date, lawmakers will be home in time to celebrate with their families.