September 2015 Newsletter

Deborah Boone


In the past few weeks, I have been extremely busy with a variety of conferences and special events.  During the last week in August I was pleased to participate in the 2015 Oregon Coast Economic Summit, hosted by the Oregon Coastal Caucus.   This was a wonderful three day event where we covered a myriad of topics, including education,  job creation and economic development in Oregon coastal and rural regions.  The coastal environment is of key importance, and I hosted a panel on ocean acidification and hypoxia, experts are hoping to prevent the next oyster crash through science and research.  This was the fourth annual event and attracted more than 450 people, including Governor Kate Brown, Secretary of State Jeanne Atkins, Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum, and Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici.

This past month,  Congresswoman Bonamici spent some quality time on the North Coast, in early September, she held a local leaders meeting prior to a Warrenton Town Hall session, and was able to update north coast residents on a variety of federal issues. Of continuing interest to our coastal community members has been emergency preparedness and resilience planning, along with Federal Emergency Management Agency planning efforts.   

I was delighted to participate in the second annual Cannon Beach Race the Wave, an event designed to build awareness of tsunami preparedness.   The race begins on the beach and progresses along evacuation routes to higher ground, and ended at a preparedness fair on Elk Creek Road.   The event was well attended and included federal, state and local officials interested in the safety and welfare of our coastal residents.

Race the Wave
Oregon Emergency Management Director Andrew Phelps, Clatsop County Emergency Manager Tiffany Brown, Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici, and me.


While many people in House District 32 live within tsunami inundation zones, and are understandably concerned about disaster preparedness,  it is a relief to see that federal and state officials are now paying more attention to this issue..   On Tuesday September 15th, Governor Kate Brown headlined the rollout event for the updated Cascadia Playbook at the Oregon Office of Emergency Management Emergency Coordination Center.   The playbook supports various plans and efforts for the first two weeks of a catastrophic incident, which would include a Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake and tsunami. As the Governor pointed out in her comments: "While the Cascadia Playbook can't keep the worst natural disaster from happening, it will ensure that Oregon is as prepared as possible.”

Governor Kate Brown Cascadia Playbook Rollout
Governor Kate Brown at Cascadia Playbook Rollout

Last week the Land Conservation and Development Commission met in Astoria for three days, on Wednesday they toured downtown Astoria and heard about recent development, and then held a Community Roundtable with elected officials and community leaders to discuss local land use issues.    Their Thursday meeting included information on tsunami planning, where the commission listened to staff and elected officials from Cannon Beach and Clatsop County on tsunami-related planning activities, partnerships, opportunities and ongoing challenges for our coastal region.  Friday, one of their agenda items related to marine renewable energy, and the commission heard an update and status report on several marine renewable energy projects that are currently seeking state and federal permits within state and federal waters.  The Land Conservation and Development Commission holds six meetings annually and while they are based in Salem, this year they also traveled to Portland, Burns, and Astoria.   I think it is important for the commission to visit all areas of the state, because each region has unique land use challenges.

The Oregon Department of Transportation announced that the US 101 preservation project from Wheeler to the Wilson River will be completed next spring.   The project is about halfway complete but was halted this week, since there would not be enough time for the necessary secondary pavement compacting and installation of permanent striping before winter rains begin.   The contractor was able to complete nearly nine miles of the project from just south of Wheeler to around Barview which is just south of Rockaway Beach.  Starting after March 15, 2016, the contractor will complete the remainder of the project from Barview down to the Wilson River near the Tillamook Cheese Factory.

On Monday of this week lawmakers returned to Salem for three Legislative Days, where we are holding committee meetings, getting agency briefings, and hearing the latest state financial forecast.  No legislation is passed during the quarterly legislative days, but it is a chance to prepare for the five-week session that begins February 1, 2016 where we will consider a limited number of new bills, and tweak the budget if necessary. 

Even when the Legislature is not in session, we still check our messages regularly, so if you do have a concern or comment or need help regarding a state issue or agency, please contact my office.   It is my privilege to represent you in the Oregon House of Representatives and I look forward to hearing from you.


Deborah Boone

email: I phone: 503-986-1432
address: 900 Court St NE, H-481, Salem, OR, 97301