Rep Nathanson enews
Sept Legislative Days
Hearings at Capitol in September

October 2012

Dear Friends,
September has been filled with legislative committee hearings, and many meetings in Eugene, Salem and Portland.  Those meetings include discussions with the new Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum, passenger rail managers for Washington and Oregon, our new Coordinated Care Organization overseeing health care transformation, and a visit to the Community Veterinary Clinic on their first anniversary. 

Our Government Efficiency Task Force has wrapped up its work to meet the October 1 reporting deadline.  We'll have another handful of concrete proposals to make things simpler and better. 

In This Issue
Avoiding home foreclosure
Sports Tourism
Transit careers for veterans
Northwest Youth Corps; UO Sustainability
Ocean Power
State Library
Join Our Mailing List!
Quick Links

Rep Nathanson homepage


Oregon Legislature


Like me on Facebook
Help available to avoid home foreclosures

Oregon Housing and Community Services has launched a new foreclosure prevention website to help distressed homeowners facing the possibility of foreclosure.  It includes a "find-a-counselor" tool to help homeowners locate a trained counselor that can assess the ability to keep a home, review loan documents and credit history, and provide other services. There is also information about the foreclosure process and links to certified mediators that can work with homeowners and lenders to find solutions other than foreclosure.

Sports Tourism and the Oregon Economy

skating championship bannerI'm happy to be working with the Oregon Sports Authority.  Their mission is "to position the state of Oregon as the preferred location for select amateur and professional sports events, franchises and related activities in order to enhance the quality of life of Oregonians and to stimulate the state's economy."   Major achievements include landing the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament (2009 and 2012), Davis Cup World Final, US Figure Skating Lane IceChampionships, Women's World Cup Soccer, and the Dew Tour attracting a nationwide TV audience to watch the world's top skate and BMX athletes. In 2010 the Oregon Sports Authority was recognized as "Sports Commission of the Year" by the National Association of Sports Commissions.  Their highlighted events for this week include Figure Skating Northwest Pacific Regional Championships and Nelscott Reef Big Wave Classic (surfing) and more.    


And we know how our local region contributes, too - especially regaining our Track Town USA title!  I recently met with OSA's CEO Drew Mahalic at Lane Ice to discuss current and coming events, and more possibilities.

Transit careers for veterans?

Oregon veterans could benefit if the US Federal Transit Agency awards a grant to help recruit veterans to transportation careers as transit operators and maintenance workers. A couple of weeks ago, at a meeting of the Emergency Board (E-Board), we approved the funding stream and staffing if the request is successful (see description of project). The request, made to the FTA's Innovative Transit Workforce Development Program, would create a pipeline for veterans to enter the transit workforce. Lane Transit District and Lane Community College would collaborate on a for-credit program and certificate for mechanics and drivers. The program could be adopted by other transit agencies and community colleges in Oregon. Veterans continue to face higher unemployment rates than the general population (see report). I'm proud to support great new ideas like this!

Local news and events
Visiting Northwest Youth Corps.  Sustainability award for UO
NWYC crew
Visiting the NWYC work crew at Dorris Ranch
(Rep. Nathanson in the pink shirt)

I was pleased to have the opportunity to visit a Northwest Youth Corps job site last month at Dorris Ranch in Springfield. NWYC "offers a challenging education and job-training experience that helps youth and young adults develop the skills they need to lead full and productive lives." NWYC has residential and day programs at job sites in various locations around Oregon, training young people to work as a team on conservation and reclamation projects. They run several kinds of programs including The Conservation Corps, which combines outdoor adventure and education with paid residential environmental work experience for teens; a Garden Camp teaches the value of veggies and the fun of home farming for 7-11 year olds, and an outdoor alternative high school that combines classroom education with field study and outdoor resource management work experience. It's great to see young people taking leading roles as environmental stewards of our community.


Sierra Club recently recognized the University of Oregon as one of the nation's best schools for sustainability. This is the sixth annual ranking of schools, conducted by the Sierra Club, the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, the Sustaintable Endowements Institute, and the Princeton Review. Of 96 schools, the UO came in at "No. 13 in the nation with especially high marks receive for planning and innovation." Other Oregon schools making the list: Lewis & Clark College (22), PSU (28), and SOU (45).  See the article.

Ocean Power
ocean buoy for wave energyThe Reedsport wave park project is the first in the U.S. to receive a federal license for a wave power station. Ocean Power Technologies is using an Oregon company to build the buoy, which should be placed on the coast next spring. Oregon Wave Energy Trust explains "Oregon's Coastline is among a few places in the world that has the key elements to tap into wave energy."  They have good information about wave energy and approaches to develop the emerging industry: policies, environmental assessment, and working with stakeholders including "fishing and environmental groups, coastal communities and industry, government agencies and other partners in responsibly developing this new industry while establishing Oregon as the North American leader in wave energy."  At the Ocean Renewable Energy Conference Sept. 27 Gov. Kitzhaber, former Gov. Kulongoski, and Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici spoke about the promise of renewable energy, ocean energy, and Oregon's position as a national leader. I'm hopeful for success of this first commercial buoy in the U.S.


State Library in Salem
Photos from a recent visit to Oregon State Library, a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project dedicated in 1939.  I had a good conversation with our State Librarian about library services then, now, and in the future. Interesting historical note: in 1942, "Ask Your State Librarian", a weekly radio program, was broadcast over the state owned radio station, KOAC in Corvallis.
      OSL-bound books OSL art-thunderegg OSL art-beaver 

Representative Nancy Nathanson | PO Box 41895 | Eugene | OR | 97404