Latest News

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION - A stock photo that was used by ODOT's Traffic Safety Division for a public education poster on texting and driving
September 20, 2017

What you can do under Oregon's new distracted driving law

by Paris Achen/Capital Bureau
The revised law expands a ban on mobile electronic devices and stiffens penalties and fines.
CAPITAL BUREAU - A legislative committee Wednesday approved a ballot title and explanatory statement for a potential referendum on health care funding.
September 20, 2017

Ballot title approved for health care funding referendum

by Claire Withycombe/Capital Bureau
Neither side happy with committee's description for possible January ballot question.
PARIS ACHEN/CAPITAL BUREAU - Gov. Kate Brown signs an executive order in Feburary barring the use of state resources to enforce federal immigration policy.
September 19, 2017

Governor doesn't get meeting with Sessions

by Paris Achen/Capital Bureau
Brown told reporters she would have appealed to the U.S. attorney general on behalf of DACA recipients.
CAPITAL BUREAU - Getting through a backlog of medicaid enrollment records will cost Oregon at least $4.3 million.
September 19, 2017

Eliminating Medicaid backlog will cost Oregon $4.3 million

by Claire Withycombe/Capital Bureau
State workers and contractors spent months verifying whether participants were still eligible.
PARIS ACHEN/CAPITAL BUREAU - Charred forestland along the Santiam Highway in Blue River, Oregon Sept. 13, 2017
September 18, 2017

Oregon wildfire fighting costs hit $340 million

by Paris Achen/Capital Bureau
The expenses of containing the blazes will be shared by federal, state, private and tribal entities.
KATHY ANEY/EO MEDIA GROUP - Oregon Gov, Kate Brown rides with members of the Oregon Mounted Governor's Guard during Friday's Westward Ho! Parade.
September 15, 2017

Governor touts economic development record in rural Oregon

by Claire Withycombe/Capital Bureau
Although Brown has not formally announced her candidacy, her PAC has been fundraising.
CLAIRE WITHYCOMBE/CAPITAL BUREAU - Roger Welty, a longtime Oregon Department of Forestry employee, has pitched in many a fire season as part of the agency's "militia" structure.
September 13, 2017

Forestry department 'militia' steps up to fight fires

by Claire Withycombe/Capital Bureau
ODF's management model draws staff from many jobs to support fire suppression.
PARIS ACHEN/CAPITAL BUREAU - Rep. Cliff Bentz, R-Ontario, at the Blue Mountain Eagle office in John Day
September 13, 2017

Bentz: Legislature should prioritize revenue, PERS reform

by Paris Achen and Claire Withycombe/Capital Bureau
A coalition has filed an initiative petition requiring state and local agencies to use excess revenue to pay down PERS obligations.
EO MEDIA GROUP - Marijuana plants grow in a high tunnel at a farm near McMinnville, Ore. State economists project the state will bring in net marijuana revenues of about $142 million in the next two years, but the very short history of legal marijuana and other factors complicate forecasting.
Sep 11, 2017 36

State economists tackle pot, but gaps persist in young industry

Economists say Oregon will see net marijuana revenues of about $142 million in the next two years.
JAMIE VALDEZ/PORTLAND TRIBUNE - Gov. Kate Brown speaks at Portland Community College Southeast campus Aug. 29, 2017.
Sep 08, 2017 74

Democrats see path to carbon 'cap and invest' bill in 2018

The proposed state program would put a price on greenhouse emissions from industry.
CAPITAL BUREAU - A governor's task force is studying ways to reduce the unfunded liability in the Public Employees Retirement System.
Sep 08, 2017 96

Task force mulls options to reduce PERS liability

Gov. Kate Brown has charged the task force to reduce the unfunded liability, by $5 billion.
COURTESY PHOTO - Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum
Sep 06, 2017 61

Oregon sues Trump administration to save DACA

Oregon is one of 16 states claiming in a federal lawsuit that ending the program violates the Constitution's equal protections clause.
OUTLOOK PHOTO: JOSH KULLA - Gov. Kate Brown addresses reporters during a press conference in Troutdale on Tuesday, Sept. 5.
Sep 05, 2017 56

Brown: Fire threatens water, power systems

The Eagle Creek blaze jumped 13 miles in 16 hours, officials say. It is 0 percent contained.
U.S. SUPREME COURT - U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.
Sep 05, 2017 63

Oregon's non-unanimous jury law under scrutiny

A case appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court could impact Oregon law allowing 10-2 convictions.
PARIS ACHEN/CAPITAL BUREAU - Security event staff member Nevin Wallace checked identification cards outside the cannabis exhibit at the Oregon State Fair in Salem to make sure visitors were all 21 or older.
Sep 01, 2017 63

No pot plants at Oregon State Fair this year

A change in state rules prevented organizers from displaying plants at the Oregon State Fair.
CAPITAL BUREAU - The Oregon Health Authority has culled 54,000 ineligible participants from its Medicaid rolls.
Aug 31, 2017 71

OHA says it has cleared its Medicaid eligibility backlog

Oregon fell behind in determining participant eligibility and had a backlog of 115,000 people.
CAPITAL BUREAU - The governor's task force studying PERS is discussing ways to reduce the unfunded pension liability.
Aug 30, 2017 205

PERS task force solutions have uncertain future

Some proposals floated by the governor's task force involve substantial policy changes.
JAIME VALDEZ/PORTLAND TRIBUNE - Gov. Kate Brown holds up copies of the signed transportation funding bill during a signing ceremony at Portland Community College Southeast Tuesday.
Aug 29, 2017 69

Governor celebrates transportation package with statewide tour

The tour to five cities was meant to celebrate enactment of a $5.3 billion transportation funding package, but might have enlivened the governor's potential reelection bid.
COURTESY PHOTO - Secretary of State Dennis Richardson
Aug 28, 2017 67

Legislative lawyer: Secretary of state lacks authority to change initiative petition rules

Corvallis-area Democrat sought an analysis to determine the rule's legality
COURTESY PHOTO - Oregon Secretary of State Dennis Richardson
Aug 25, 2017 93

Richardson seeks to ease initiative restrictions

Critics say the changes would erode the integrity of the initiative petition process.