2017 Legislative Session Begins
Oregon's Legislative Session begins their work in earnest today. Committees will begin holding hearings and working bills in the Capitol.
Advocates can use many resources to follow the activity in the Capitol.
- O4AD publishes our bill tracking reports regularly on our website. Click HEREto access our information page. You will find bill tracking reports.
- O4AD's Bill Tracking Report can be found HERE.
- O4AD's Bill Calendar - this report shows the bills that are currently scheduled for hearing as of the date of our report. We will compile this report weekly (note it is subject to change). Find this report HERE.
- 2017 House Committee Membership
- 2017 Senate Committee Membership
- 2017 Legislative Committee Meeting Schedule
- 2017 Legislative Calendar of Deadlines
Oregon Legislative Website
Oregon's Legislative Website offers many different ways to stay up to date on the Session. Take a moment to visit Oregon's Legislative Website to learn what you can access. Click HERE for the website.
Tools for Advocates on the Oregon Legislative Website:
- OLIS (Oregon Legislative Information System): OLIS provides a wealth of information regarding the current session. Find Committee agendas, Committee membership, Bills, New Measures, Daily and Cumulative Publications and more.
- Committee Agendas Online: This page offers a listing of all currently scheduled Committee hearings and is updated as soon as Committee hearings are posted or revised.
- Today's Session Information: Each day, information on hearings, bills introduced, bills to be heard on the Senate or House Floor and Session Publications are listed.
- Audio/Visual for the Capitol: Hearings are now streamed live which allows for greater access by all. Advocates can review hearings that are upcoming which may be access online. Hearings are also archived and may be watched later.
Prioritizing Oregon Project Independence
Oregon Project Independence, a proven, effective and cost efficient program, was slated for a 75% reduction in funding for older adults/seniors and elimination of all funding for people with disabilities in the Governor's Recommended Budget. This program has become one of Oregon's only 'safety net' programs in long term services and supports. OPI helps our vulnerable older adults stay in their own homes and communities, avoiding premature or unnecessary entrance into facility based care and/or Medicaid. And the savings to State and Federal budgets is indisputable.
Care through OPI has an average cost of $350 in General Fund per month while all levels of Medicaid funded care for seniors and people with disabilities. Care through OPI is 10% of the cost of Medicaid funded care through a nursing facility. The majority of individuals receiving OPI services would be income eligible for Medicaid funded long term services and supports. With a reduction or elimination of OPI funding, moving to Medicaid would be a likely only option for over 96% of current OPI consumers - at a net higher cost to General Fund for Oregon's budgets.
Oregon's budget writers must prioritize the protection of Oregon Project Independence in the 2017-19 budget. Eliminating OPI funding would result in higher overall costs to the State's General Fund and jeopardize the independence for those in the OPI program.
O4AD has released an overview of the cost comparisons of OPI versus Medicaid. You can read this HERE.
Check out KPTV12 coverage of the proposed reduction to OPI in the Governor's Recommended Budget HERE.
The Lund Report also covered the proposed reduction to OPI and potential for higher overall costs to State budgets from a reduction. Read their story HERE.
Please stay tuned for opportunities to advocate to protect OPI funding for the 2017-19 biennium.
Ways & Means Budget Hearings
Budget hearings to gain input from across the state have been announced.
From the Office of the Senate President:
The Oregon Legislative Assembly’s budget-writing Joint Ways and Means Committee will hold a series of public hearings in seven cities across the state beginning February 10.
The town hall events will create opportunities for Oregonians to provide input into the 2017-19 biennial state budget, according to Representative Nancy Nathanson (D-Eugene) and Senator Richard Devlin (D-Tualatin), the co-chairs of the committee.
On January 19, the co-chairs released an “Existing Resources Framework,” recognizing that existing revenues fall $1.8 billion short of the funding necessary to continue state services at current levels. The entire budget framework and accompanying narrative are available here:https://www.oregonlegislature.gov/lfo/Documents/2017%20Co-Chair%20Document.pdf.
The full schedule for the town hall tour is listed below.
Friday, February 10 -- Salem
5 to 7 p.m.
Hearing Room F
Oregon State Capitol
900 Court Street NE, Salem
Saturday, February 11 -- Portland
Noon to 2 p.m.
Main Mall, Amo DeBernardis CC Building
PCC, Sylvania campus
12000 SW 49th Ave, Portland
Friday, February 17 -- Hermiston
5 to 7 p.m.
Hermiston High School
600 S 1st St, Hermiston
Saturday, February 18 -- Madras
1 to 3 p.m.
Performing Arts Center
Madras High School
390 SE 10th St, Madras
Friday, February 24 -- Ashland
5 to 7 p.m.
Rogue River Room
Southern Oregon University
1250 Siskiyou Blvd, Ashland
Saturday, February 25 -- Eugene
1 to 3 p.m.
Rooms 308-309 Building 17 (The Forum)
Lane Community College
4000 E 30th Ave, Eugene
Friday, March 3 -- Tillamook
6 to 8 p.m.
Port of Tillamook Bay
6825 Officers Row, Tillamook
O4AD encourages Advocates to join a budget hearing in your area. Stay tuned for talking points to utilize during these hearings.
Advocacy Opportunities in 2017
O4AD continues to work to keep you updated on the Legislative Session and opportunities for advocacy. With the projected revenue shortages, the protection of programs for older adults and people with disabilities is of critical importance for O4AD, our members and advocates. We hope that you will engage on these issues.
O4AD is offering many different opportunities for engagement. You may also find dates and times on our website at: http://www.o4ad.org/calendar.html.
Advocacy opportunities for the 2017 Session ~
O4AD Advocacy Day at the Capitol: Wednesday, May 17, 2017. Information on registration to follow. Please plan to join O4AD and our advocates at the Capitol to carry the message of the importance of protecting the independence, dignity, choice and safety of Oregon's older adults and people with disabilities.
The Campaign for Oregon's Seniors & People with Disabilities Advocacy Day: February 28, 2017. For more information on this advocacy opportunity, please click HERE.
O4AD Advocacy Check ins: Launched in 2016, O4AD has reserved Room 350 in the Capitol as an opportunity for advocates to come to the Capitol, have a place to take a break, grab a cup of coffee or tea, hear updates from O4AD and visit with your legislators. It is O4AD's goal to make the Capitol as accessible as possible for advocates. If you are planning a day to meet with Legislators or bring advocates, please consider utilizing a check in day in order to have a meeting room at your disposal. Check in days are scheduled on the following dates:
- Thursday, March 16. Room 350. Oregon Capitol
- Thursday, April 13. Room 350. Oregon Capitol
- Thursday, June 8. Room 350. Oregon Capitol
- Thursday, June 15. Room 350. Oregon Capitol
O4AD Legislative Conference Calls: O4AD will be hosting weekly Legislative Conference calls. We may revise the schedule as the session continues but as things move quickly during the opening of the session, we will be scheduling calls on Fridays. Please call in on our conference line for an update of the weeks activities and occurrences in the Capitol.
Fridays, Beginning February 3. 11 am
O4AD Conference line: 1-866-200-5786. User code: 835329
Stay up to date!
With the Legislative Session around the corner, stay up to date on what's happening and how you can be involved. O4AD values the participation of our advocates and their voice in the conversation about supports and services for Oregon's seniors and people with disabilities.
Please do not hesitate to contact O4AD with any questions or for information we can provide! 503.463.8692. email@example.com
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O4AD advocates for the independence, dignity, choice and safety of Oregon's seniors and people with disabilities.