OREGON HOUSE REPUBLICANS
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 14, 2011
Contact: Nick Smith
HOUSE REPUBLICANS PASS REFORMS TO PROMOTE
PAPERLESS GOVERNMENT, INFORMATION SHARING
SALEM — House Republicans today passed a pair of government reform bills to promote paperless government transactions and to better enable certain agencies to share data when attempting to recover overpayment of benefits.
Rep. Patrick Sheehan (R-Clackamas) secured House passage of HB 2061 to make it easier for agencies to conduct routine electronic transactions. He said the bill will save taxpayer dollars by removing an unnecessary layer of bureaucracy and reducing the use of paper.
“The state is currently required to seek consent whenever they conduct electronic transactions, even if these transactions are a regular part of their process,” Rep. Sheehan said. “HB 2061 maintains protections for personally-sensitive information, but enables agencies to expand the use of routine electronic documents to improve efficiency and save money.”
Rep. Jason Conger (R-Bend) successfully carried HB 2060 to allow the Oregon Employment Department to disclose employment-related information to state human services agencies for use in collecting debts. He said the bill will make it easier for these agencies to collect overpayments in food stamps, welfare programs, the Oregon Health Plan and employment-related day care.
“Current law doesn’t allow these state agencies to share data when recovering debts, such as the overpayment of state benefits,” Rep. Conger said. “The bill allows the Department of Human Services and the Oregon Health Authority to use more timely, complete and accurate data to locate people who’ve received more than they should. By improving our recovery process, we can save money and strengthen our human safety net.”
Both bills move to the Senate for further consideration. Reforming state government is a key part of the House Republicans’ 2011 Jobs and Reform Agenda.