Representative Nancy Nathanson
  August 2010
Rep Nathanson joins LTD board member and local rail advocate Greg Evans at a rail open house.
NN and Greg Evans
Dear Friends and Neighbors,
As many of you may know, I have been pushing the last few years on improving passenger and freight rail in Oregon. I have spoken at conferences, attended meetings, and convened some of my own meetings to continue to advance the conversation. In July I traveled to Portland to attend the Cascadia Rail Conference, which brought together people from British Columbia, Washington, and Oregon to talk about a high speed rail vision for the Pacific Northwest. 

At the most recent meeting of my Government Efficiency Task Force, we approved over 20 recommendations to move forward and I am already working with legislators, agency staff, and counties to turn recommendations into action.

There is never a dull moment ! ... but our top priority is always serving the constituents who elected us. I am here to help you, listen to you, and answer any questions you have. You can contact me by emailing or calling 541-343-2206.
I look forward to hearing from you.


In This Issue
Restoring funds to vital services
Jobs created by ARRA
Recent district meetings
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Capitol News

Restoring funds to vital services for seniors and disabled
Last month's newsletter reported on the sobering revenue forecast and the Governor's plans to cut $577 million equally across the state budget. This is equivalent to a 9% cut for 2010-11 for all General Fund programs. That included about $158 million in Department of Human Services reductions in critical programs for seniors and the most vulnerable Oregonians.

Rep Nathanson speaks with local rail advocates on National Train Day.
Dr.Dave & PA
At the end of July, I helped restore $17.1 million in critical services for over 16,000 Oregonians, including seniors and people with disabilities. As a member of the Emergency Board ("E-Board") I voted to use some money being held in a special purpose account, and to direct the department to find savings in other areas that would not affect programs.  We stopped planned cuts in payments for Assisted Living Facilities, Residential Care Facilities, and nursing facilities, and saved the following important programs:

  • Oregon Project Independence, a state-based program offering in-home assistance to seniors and those diagnosed with Alzheimer's (2,000 people served last year)
  • Medicaid Home Delivered meals for seniors and people with disabilities (940 people served)
  • Medicaid In-Home Care programs for seniors, people with disabilities and mental health issues (over 11,000 clients in three different programs)
  • Community Mental Health programs for people without Medicaid assistance (1,462 clients)
  • Developmental Disabilities Family Support Program offering assistance with extraordinary costs associated with raising a child with developmental disabilities (1,140 families)
I will continue to work very hard to mitigate some of the worst cuts to these very vital services. Oregon must have a balanced budget and is not allowed to spend more on services than the official revenue forecast. Over 90% of the general fund budget goes to education, human services and health care, and public safety.  Unfortunately it is impossible to absorb a 9% budget cut without affecting these key areas. I will continue to do what I can to lessen the impact of any future cuts that may have to be made. 
Over 6,000 Jobs created by Recovery Act last quarter
A recent report on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) in Oregon showed that 6,150 jobs were funded between April 1 and June 30th of this year. Total investment this quarter in all Recovery Act projects and services, including education, health care and unemployment assistance, is approximately $462 million.

During the last three months, Recovery Act funds have paid the salaries of over 4,000 educators in Oregon's K-12 schools and higher education system. It also continues to fund energy efficiency, renewable energy and transportation projects throughout the state.  For example, Oregonians were employed through the Low-Income Weatherization program, helping increase the energy efficiency of homes and reducing monthly energy bills for low-income families. This program has weatherized hundreds of homes, hiring individual contracting firms to do the work.

A significant portion of Recovery Act dollars continue to be used to improve Oregon's transportation system. The Oregon Department of Transportation invested $34 million in Recovery Act funding for highways, roads, bridges and public transit projects that have created or retained 310 jobs during the last quarter.

Other areas of investment during this quarter include extended and emergency unemployment benefits, food stamp assistance serving over 300,000 Oregon households, child care assistance, and funding 736 jobs in 14 state correctional institutions.
District News
Helping elderly and disabled tenants
Today's Register Guard reports that about 20 elderly and disabled tenants at Country Club Manor on Cal Young Road are being evicted through no fault of their own. We are communicating with the agency for updates on the legal and administrative issues, as well as securing moving assistance for the residents who have only a few weeks to move. Our office will be helping tenants with moving - if you'd like to help, too, please contact Bev Bjurling at or 541-682-2508.
Recent Meetings
I've made several trips to Salem or Portland in the past month. Despite the busy schedule I have had some great meetings right here in Eugene also. The budget scenario has been on everyone's
Rep Nathanson speaks at the UO East Campus Residence groundbreaking.
Dr.Dave & PA
mind, leading to meetings with advocates for human services programs like Oregon's Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and assistance for families with children with a disability, and help for victims of domestic violence. I also met with the president of a manufactured home park association working on purchasing their park, so they will own the property as well as the home. Health care was also another big topic for meetings this month, including meeting with a community health group and touring the Emergency Department at Sacred Heart Hospital-Riverbend.
Representative Nancy Nathanson | 900 Court St NE | Salem | OR | 97301