COVID-19 Updates 12/8/2020

Rep. Sollman

Friends and Neighbors,

Governor Updates

Governor Kate Brown Provides COVID-19 and Vaccine Update

Governor urges Oregonians to continue to take safety precautions, even in light of pending vaccines.

Governor Kate Brown held a press conference Friday to update Oregonians on the status of COVID-19 in Oregon and the pending federal approval for vaccines. The Governor was joined by Pat Allen, Director of the Oregon Health Authority (OHA); Rachael Banks, OHA Public Health Director; and Dr. Dean Sidelinger, State Epidemiologist.

"Ten months into this pandemic, when we are all so incredibly tired of dealing with COVID-19, the data is showing that the majority of Oregonians are listening to public health recommendations — you're wearing your masks and staying home," said Governor Brown. "With Oregon slated to begin receiving vaccines in mid-December, there is some light at the end of the tunnel. But the introduction of a vaccine does not end this pandemic. Right now and into the foreseeable future, the only way to reduce transmission and slow the spread of this disease is to continue to take safety precautions until the vaccine is both widely available and widely administered."

  • A copy of the Governor's remarks is available here.
  • A recording of Friday's livestreamed press conference is available here

Read Oregon's COVID-19 Vaccination Plan here.

Oregon Health Authority Updates

Updated Coronavirus Website

People in Oregon will find it easier to learn about the state framework that went into effect last week with an updated coronavirus website. The website is the new go-to place for anyone who wants to learn about COVID-19 in Oregon. Among the highlights are a map with each county risk level, state guidelines, resources, testing information and more. Follow this link, or click the picture below, for more information.

Website graphic

COVID-19 Epidemic Trends and Projections in Oregon

From the the Oregon Health Authority

On Friday we released its latest modeling, which shows a projected increase in COVID-19 cases even though more Oregonians are staying home and physically distancing:

The model shows each person with COVID-19 is infecting an average of 1.25 people, as of Nov. 19, one day after the statewide freeze was enacted.

  • The current level of transmission could generate “exponential” growth, resulting in approximately 2,000 new daily cases and 75 additional daily hospitalizations by Dec. 24.
  • If the spread of COVID-19 reached the levels from mid-October, new daily cases could reach 2,700 and patients needing hospitalization would increase to 110 per day.
  • The model does consider the time period during Thanksgiving.

The model also shows that Oregonians are practicing physical distancing at the highest levels since the beginning of the summer and that a majority of Oregonians are wearing face coverings when outside, or indoors where six feet of distance cannot be maintained.

Modeling Graphic

Heart Conditions and COVID-19: Protecting Your Health

From the Oregon Health Authority

We’ve heard that many of you are interested in learning more about the underlying conditions that can lead to complications from COVID-19.

These conditions include: cardiovascular disease, chronic liver and lung disease, chronic renal disease, being a current or former smoker, diabetes mellitus, immunocompromised condition, neurologic and neurodevelopmental conditions, obesity and other chronic diseases.

Check out the graphic below to learn more about heart conditions and COVID-19.

OHA Graphic


House District 30 - 2021 Legislative Session Concepts

In order to provide information and updates on the policies that I am working on for the 2021 Session, the concepts will be shared in upcoming newsletters. (In no particular order)

Ban on Modified Exhaust Systems

Muffler pic

Many of the bills that legislators bring forward come directly from discussions with constituents. One example for 2021 upcoming session involves reducing the level of noise we hear from vehicles on our streets. My Village at Orenco neighbors have consistently shared with me that this is a growing problem that needs to be addressed. Police departments in population centers throughout the state are being inundated with calls regarding the increase in exhaust noise on our streets. The Hillsboro Police Department estimates that they receive at least 3 calls per day.  

Our office has been working closely with Lieutenant Jincy Pace of the Hillsboro Police Department on bill language to address this issue. The policy will ban modifications to exhaust systems for the purposes of making it louder. Devices like “cut outs” and “bypasses,” which are generally easily visible during a routine traffic stop, would not be allowed. As crafted, the policy would not impact “classic cars,” farm equipment, or vehicles that are “noisy by design” (many motorcycles might fall into that category). However, any vehicle (including motorcycles) that have their exhaust systems modified in such a way as to increase the volume would be subject to a fine.  

While this policy alone will not solve the problem completely, our hope is that it will lead to positive change by giving our law enforcement community another tool to try and bring some peace to our neighborhoods.  

Education Updates

Student Loan Payment Pause Extended 30 Days by Education Department

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced on Friday, the extension of the federal student loan administrative forbearance period, the pause in interest accrual, and the suspension of collections activity through January 31, 2021. Federal student loan borrowers will not be expected to make payments through January of next year, though they will continue to be able to do so and benefit from the 0% interest rate as they pay down principal. Non-payments will continue to count toward the number of payments required under an income-driven repayment plan, a loan rehabilitation agreement, or the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program.

  • Read the full press release here.
  • Read an article on the extension here.

A huge "Thank You" to Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici for continuing to advocate for student loan relief at the Federal level.

From Congresswoman Bonamici: "Student loan borrowers need relief during the pandemic. There was a suspension of payments for those with federal student loans, but that was set to expire December 31. I’m glad the Department of Education granted a one-month extension through January 31, 2021, but more help will be needed. I will continue fighting for aid for those with student loans throughout the pandemic."

Unemployment Insurance Updates

Thank you to the Oregon Employment Department for providing the following information.

Benefits Expiring – Week Ending December 26, 2020

Without any extensions to the CARES Act, PUA and PEUC are set to end the week ending Dec. 26. 

  • We have a webinar you can review about  the ending of CARES Act programs and the reduction in number weeks of benefits under Extended Benefits. You can see our webinars, by visiting
  • As we stated last week, starting Dec. 13 the extended benefits extension program will shift from High Extended Benefits, which provided up to 20 weeks of benefits to Extended Benefits, which provides up to 13 weeks of benefits. 
  • If someone has already received 13 weeks of EB, they may be able to receive PUA benefits for the few weeks remaining in the year before that program expires on Dec. 26. 
    • That only can happen if their unemployment fits one of the CARES Act listed criteria for being COVID-19 impacted. 
    • To apply for PUA, claimants should use the Online Claim System. The online PUA application is available in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Korean, and Arabic
  • The loss of this safety net is going to be incredibly difficult. While we cannot offer more benefits without new legislation, we encourage Oregonians to seek additional resources:
    • Free or low-cost health coverage through the Oregon Health Plan, even if someone has been denied in the past. Visit or call 800-699-9075.
    • For assistance paying for rent or groceries, accessing child care or transportation, and accessing other critical resources, visit or call 2-1-1.
    • For job seeking assistance and support, contact your local WorkSource center. Companies are hiring, and they are reaching out to us for help finding new employees. Visit for more.

Waiting Week – 337,500 People Paid

So far, we have paid approximately 337,500 people for their waiting week, totaling $242 million.

  • Constituents can check their online claim system account to view what their credited waiting week was
  • Last week, we estimated that about 170,000 people would need to have their waiting week payment manually processed, and that it may take until the end of January to get all of those payments out. Today, that number is down to about 52,000 people who have not yet received their waiting week payment.
  • These remaining claims are more complicated so will take longer to resolve but we are still hoping to complete the vast majority by the end of December. We have employees dedicated to this specific work.

PFMLI Town Hall – Listening Sessions Continue

The next town hall is Tuesday Dec. 8 from 6:30-7:30pm.

  • This session will focus on self-employed individuals and independent contractors who elect to participate in the program, including contribution and benefit amounts and how to elect coverage.​ 

Modernization Program – UI Project Intent to Award Update

After completing the additional Round 4 evaluation activities required by the addendum to our UI solution RFP in mid-October, FAST Enterprises has been named the top-ranking vendor considered for the contract with the Oregon Employment Department for the UI Modernization Project. The Department of Administrative Services-Procurement Services (DAS-PS) has issued them a Notice of Intent to Award (NITA).

While the additional time spent completing the Round 4 evaluations delayed the progress of the UI Modernization procurement, we gleaned valuable information from the virtual site visits with states that have experience with the two finalists, the additional documentation submitted, and our follow-up conversations with the finalists. More information on the Modernization Program online here

Small Business Updates

From the City of Hillsboro

City of Hillsboro Emergency Business Grant Program

City of Hillsboro

The City of Hillsboro values our small businesses and wants to help as many entities as we can during this unprecedented crisis. Our Small Business Emergency Relief Grants support local businesses who have been impacted by COVID-19.

Small Business and Nonprofit Grants Round 5

Small businesses and 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations can apply to receive up to $4,000 in emergency grant funding during Round 5.

Applications will be open from Tuesday, December 8, at 9 am through Thursday, December 10, at 4 pm. Links to apply in English and Spanish will be available on this webpage. Lea esta información en español.

Priority will be given to:

Visit here for eligibility criteria and to find more information.

Community Outreach

Lightopia – An Illuminated Journey

From the City of Hillsboro Parks and Rec


A FREE Illuminated Journey, a brand-new family holiday experience at the Gordon Faber Recreation Complex, is open Friday, November 27 through Saturday, January 30.

This brilliant third of a mile drive-through attraction features thousands of feet of lights and seasonal light vignettes ranging from funny and familiar (think: Santa’s elves) to dazzling that will delight folks young and old. Your Lightopia passage will include a free treat, a 30-minute drive through the route, and a concurrent audio program timed to the light display (must have a working FM car radio).

This event is free and open to all. We encourage you to bring an item to donate for the Hillsboro Firefighters Random Acts of Kindness and Hillsboro Elks Lodge “Toy & Joy” holiday toy drive from November 27 through December 10 or a nonperishable food donation for our local food banks from December 11 through January 30. 

For more information, visit their website here.

Register now! (Check back if all dates are sold out to see if more become available.)

ZooLights at the Oregon Zoo


This year, ZooLights at the Oregon Zoo will be a drive-thru event. Tickets must be purchased in advance by reserving a specific date and time. Tickets are released on a 7 day rolling schedule, so be sure to check back if the current week is sold out. Snacks and souvenirs can also be bought at the time of ticket purchase, to enjoy when you arrive.

Find more information and get your tickets here.

Winter Wonderland at Portland International Raceway


Recognized throughout the Pacific Northwest as the “Largest Holiday Light Show West of the Mississippi”, the 28th annual Safeway Winter Wonderland powered by Advantis Credit Union, will grab your attention with glimmers and glows around every corner.

Since 1993, a journey through Winter Wonderland has become a Holiday tradition for many families, friends, and social organizations to celebrate the spirit of the holiday season.

Spectators can enjoy the most spectacular drive-through light show in the region, viewing over 250 colorful light set pieces and many fully animated scenes from the comfort of their own vehicle.

Over two million visitors have taken the Winter Wonderland journey since its origin. All proceeds from the event will benefit Sunshine Division's year-round hunger relief efforts as they provide thousands of meals for Portland families in need.

Please no chains or studded tires on the racetrack.

For more information, visit their website here.

Buy your tickets in advance here.

Keeping Kids Safe Online

WashCo Webinar

Distanced learning, popular social media applications and video games. Our children are more connected to the internet than ever before, and cyber predators know it. These predators are using proven methods along with new strategies to connect with kids in an effort to take advantage of them. Join us as we detail the latest threats and how to protect against them.

Register Here.

In the News….

Rent Moratorium Proposal Asks Both Sides To Give A Little. They Should. (Bend Source) READ MORE

Supreme Court rejects challenge to Oregon school district's bathroom policy for transgender students (CBS News) READ MORE

What you need to know about COVID-19 vaccine coming to Oregon (OPB) READ MORE

Rep. Suzanne Bonamici: ‘We’re in a very dark tunnel… we desperately need the Senate to act’ (MSNBC) WATCH HERE

Oregon Legislature takes up rental and landlord protections (OPB Think Out Loud) LISTEN HERE

Additional Resources

 House District 30 Links

Federal Delegation Links

Education Links

Utilities Assistance

Food and Housing Assistance

Last week, I joined the Virtual Community Readers (Or VCRs) to read aloud a story for our local elementary school students and families.

Thank you to Cindy Cosenzo for sharing the following program information and inviting me to be a guest reader!

Each Thursday morning, the latest VCRs recording of books and stories are uploaded on to AgeCelebration’s Facebook page for Hillsboro elementary school children to enjoy with their families whenever convenient. VCR’s is a group of community members who want to share their love of reading with children and let them know we care about them and their education. We are very pleased to have students and families from Eastwood, Free Orchards, Minter Bridge, Lincoln St., McKinney, and W.L. Henry taking time to listen to the VCR's readings each week, and we welcome all schools and all young students to join us virtually

VCRs is an extension of AgeCelebration’s long-running “Community Readers” program at Eastwood Elementary School. Since it is not possible to be together right now, we came up with a way to let the young students know we are thinking of them and want them to enjoy reading just as much as we do! Feel free to share the link at your school, your PTO, all the young children in your life or in your neighborhood! Everyone invited! Everyone welcome! So gather round, settle in, and enjoy this week’s stories.

Watch here.


Be good to yourself and each other. ❤

Onward & Upward,


Capitol Phone: 503-986-1430
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE, H-487, Salem, Oregon 97301