(Salem, OR) — Following the Oregon Legislative Assembly’s adjournment sine die of the 2022 legislative session, Governor Kate Brown today commended legislators from both parties for passing her agenda to help Oregon’s working families thrive.
“I’d like to thank Senate President Peter Courtney, House Speaker Dan Rayfield, and the entire Legislature for coming together to pass a robust package of bills this year that will help Oregon’s working families. We had an opportunity this session to make big and bold investments to spur economic recovery after two years of unprecedented challenges.
“And, we had a responsibility to address the current and historic disparities that were laid bare by the pandemic, which disproportionately impacted Black, Indigenous, Latino, Latina, Latinx, Asian, Pacific Islander, Tribal, and people of color, people with low incomes, and rural Oregonians. Thanks to the work of Oregon’s Racial Justice Council and the BIPOC Caucus, equity was at the heart of so many important pieces of legislation that are on their way to becoming law.
“Working together this session, we have passed bills to expand opportunities and address the needs of Oregon’s working families in every community across this state; to protect our forests, fish, and wildlife while also creating jobs in rural Oregon; and, to ensure that we are centering the voices of Oregonians who are too often not heard, as we continue to build a just and equitable Oregon.”
Governor Brown’s priority bills included the Future Ready Oregon workforce development package, as well as bills to expand child care for working families and address the affordable housing crisis in Oregon. The Legislature also took action to pass a package of natural resources bills proposed by the Governor, including bills on the Private Forest Accord and Elliot State Forest, built around habitat preservation and responsible development to foster economic growth and job creation in rural Oregon. And, the Legislature passed the Governor’s legislation to foster environmental justice as Oregon continues to address the impacts of climate change on historically-underserved communities.
Investing in Working Families
- SB 1545, Future Ready Oregon: Invests in a broad range of workforce strategies aimed at getting Oregonians access to the job training, education, and resources they need to get into good-paying, skilled careers that meet the needs of employers today and into the future.
- HB 4005, Child Care: Invests $100 million to expand child care access across the state to serve more families, and provides professional learning opportunities and higher compensation to develop and retain child care providers.
- Housing & Homelessness: Through HB 5202, invests $400 million to increase affordable housing development, preserve at-risk manufactured housing, build community resiliency through individual development accounts, and expand homeownership support and counseling.
Natural Resource Preservation and Environmental Stewardship
- SB 1501 & SB 1502, Private Forest Accord: Establishes new assurances and protections for sensitive aquatic species on over 10 million acres of private forestland in Oregon, and puts forward a timeline for applying for a federal Habitat Conservation Plan.
- SB 1546, Elliott State Forest: Implements the Governor’s plan to keep the Elliott State Forest in public ownership and preserve it for future generations by investing $121 million in the common school fund to decouple the forest from that fund.
- HB 4077, Environmental Justice Council: Expands capacity of the Council (formerly the Environmental Justice Task Force) with dedicated staff and funding, and creates a centralized data and information hub to inform environmental justice.
- $7.5 million to extend the Oregon Strong Start program, which bridges the transition from high school to college for students from high poverty and BIPOC communities across Oregon.
- $120 million to relocate Harriet Tubman Middle School to another site in the Albina area with better air quality. $19 million to establish an Oregon Tribal Student Grant program.
- $5 million to the Oregon Conservation and Recreation Fund to preserve critical wildlife like otters and bees. $2 million for a municipal wildfire assistance program to aid Oregon communities in on-the-ground recovery actions from the 2021 wildfire season.
- $100 million to increase behavioral health housing.
- $15 million for community violence prevention grants.
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