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April 2,  2013

 

Dear Friends,

Thanks to all who attended our Redmond "Meet and Greet" on Thursday. I appreciate your time and involvement. The subjects discussed included the budget, PERS reforms, the K-12 budget, the proposed increased taxes,  new taxes, elimination of tax credits and deductions.  We also discussed school safety and gun control bills which have not yet been introduced. Our attendees were a very diverse group of community members which led to interesting discussions. This "Meet and Greet" is another way I try to have a 2-way communication with constituents. Hopefully, after this Session comes to an end;  I will be able to schedule more opportunities to meet in district.

 

Please help us grow our communication efforts by providing our newsletters to your friends and requesting they add their name to our distribution list.

 

Sincerely,

Gene Whisnant

 

 
Deer in backyard
Local constituents visiting the Whisnants
FLOOR SESSION

 

On Tuesday, on HB 2988, we had our second minority report and vote. The bill allows 16-year old citizens to register to vote. The minority report prohibits disclosure of voter registration information for registered persons under 18 years old. The minority report failed (27 Ayes, 33 Nays) on almost a party vote. Then, the bill passed with 35 ayes and 25 nays. I voted NO. This bill now allows the disclosure of personal information on our 16 year old children and grandchildren. Also, I have tried unsuccessfully for three sessions to have civics literacy added as a high school requirement. I believe this is a more important legislative action to help our youth than registering them to vote two years before they can vote

Committees
  

House Higher Education Committee:

On Monday, the committee heard testimony on two bills (HB 2729 & HB 2730) related to school meal programs. They passed to the Ways & Means Committee with a "do pass recommendation." We also received testimony on HB 3033 related to virtual schools hiring teachers who are not licensed or registered by Teacher Standards and Practices Commission and on HB 2747 & HB 2748 related to school districts charging tuition for nonresident students.

On Wednesday, we had public testimony on three bills (HB 2985, HB 3000 & HB 2098). HB 2985, which I sponsored, requested funding for Career and Technical Student Organizations like "Future Business Leaders", was voted out of committee to Ways & Means. HB 3000, on which I was a chief sponsor, received a hearing. HB 3000 requires public school students 7 years of age and younger who are beginning school to have a vision screening or vision exam. I have worked with Speaker Kotek since 2008 to improve the schools vision program and this bill improves our program. Optometrists, Ophthalmologists, Lions Clubs, Elk Clubs, and Children Visual Foundation (Bend, OR) helped in developing this legislation which will improve vision programs for our youth. HB 2098 passed out of committee to the House Revenue Committee. This bill allows the Department of Education to adjust the method of calculating the weighted average daily membership attributed to students from families living in poverty for purposes of State School Fund.

House Education Committee: 
  

On Monday, the committee heard testimony on two bills (HB 2729 & HB 2730) related to school meal programs. They passed to the Ways & Means Committee with a "do pass recommendation." We also received testimony on HB 3033 related to virtual schools hiring teachers who are not licensed or registered by Teacher Standards and Practices Commission and on HB 2747 & HB 2748 related to school districts charging tuition for nonresident students.

On Wednesday, we had public testimony on three bills (HB 2985, HB 3000 & HB 2098). HB 2985, which I sponsored, requested funding for Career and Technical Student Organizations like "Future Business Leaders", was voted out of committee to Ways & Means. HB 3000, on which I was a chief sponsor, received a hearing. HB 3000 requires public school students 7 years of age and younger who are beginning school to have a vision screening or vision exam. I have worked with Speaker Kotek since 2008 to improve the schools vision program and this bill improves our program. Optometrists, Ophthalmologists, Lions Clubs, Elk Clubs, and Children Visual Foundation (Bend, OR) helped in developing this legislation which will improve vision programs for our youth. HB 2098 passed out of committee to the House Revenue Committee. This bill allows the Department of Education to adjust the method of calculating the weighted average daily membership attributed to students from families living in poverty for purposes of State School Fund.

House Human Services & Housing Committee:

On Monday, we had public testimony on HB 3332 and passed it to Ways & Means Committee with a "do pass" recommendation. HB 3332 requires Oregon Health Authority to seek funding for crisis intervention and residential care for individuals with mental illness.

On Wednesday, we received testimony on HB 3377 which will limit Oregon State Lottery Commission expenditures on advertisement. We passed to Ways & Means HB 2971 which increases funding for independent living centers. Then we had testimony on HB 3132 which requires rules in to keep residential facilities and adult foster homes safe.

 
In This Issue
Floor Session
Committees
OLIS
Bills
Items of Interest
Contact Info
Visitors to the Capitol
Redmond "Meet and Greet"
Red Tie   
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Join Our Mailing List
  OLIS
  

The State has a new comprehensive system to help keep track of bills and committee agendas. That system is called OLIS, Oregon Legislative Information System.

BILLS

 school house rock

The deadline for bills is that by end of April 8 all bills must be scheduled for a work session in the chamber of origin and passed to the other chamber by April 18.

On Wednesday, the House passed HB 3130 which allows Deschutes County to use industrial development funds to install a traffic light in La Pine at Highway 97 and First Street. Rep. Mike McLane was the Chief Sponsor and I helped with the bill which improves safety for the La Pine industrial park.

ITEMS OF INTERESTS

 

While we are in Session, the Salem office receives hundreds of emails everyday. Over the weekend the office received over 500 emails from those who are concerned about their gun rights. This has been a pretty hot topic, not only for our constituents but for those those living all over our great state. I would like you to know that as a supporter of gun rights, I have and will continue to do whatever I can to uphold the 2nd Amendment and ensure your liberties as American citizens.  I am concerned about school safety and will continue to work to protect our children and citizens.

Contact Information

 

Please monitor our work on your behalf by signing up to receive our "Legislative Updates" and press releases. Provide us your email address at rep.genewhisnant@state.or.us. Also, you may use that email address to contact us.

 

     You can also review our work on our official website: www.leg.state.or.us/whisnant.

 

     If you want to actually view legislative floor sessions and committee meetings; go to the link:  www.leg.state.or.us/listn.

 

SALEM CONTACT INFO

Office phone number: 503-986-1453

Vicki Olson, Legislative Assistant

Email: rep.genewhisnant@state.or.us

Website: www.leg.state.or.us/whisnant

Mailing address: 900 Court Street NE H-471, Salem, Oregon 97301

 

VISITORS TO THE CAPITOL
  
Billy and Bobby Henderson
Bobby and Billy Henderson with Rep. Whisnant
Redmond "Meet and Greet"  
Redmond
At the Redmond Library
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