Lessons of the Legislature: Expect Last Minute Changes

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Lessons of the Legislature: Expect Last Minute Changes

Once again, a newsletter is coming to you from the living room of my house! We are quarantining this week due to another positive COVID test from a member or staffer on the House floor. One thing this job teaches over and over again is to have flexibility for an ever-changing schedule! 

Another thing it teaches? Always keep your eyes peeled for last minute changes to bills and unexpected turns in negotiations. There has been a lot of talk about gun bills this session, especially around SB 554, and the latest efforts to “gut and stuff” this bill to completely change its scope should be on your radar.  

This bill passed out of the Senate as a policy that would allow counties to effectively opt-in to banning the concealed carry of firearms in public buildings—and was a bill without an emergency clause. It was a bad bill, and one we hoped would either be killed in Democrat vs Democrat negotiations, or morph into a form with much less impact. 

Negotiations were seeming promising until the evening before the scheduled hearing in the House Committee on Rules when a -20 Amendment was introduced that essentially combined SB 554 with HB 2510 (safe storage bill). The new iteration not only undid a lot of the concessions and carve-outs of HB 2510 from prior versions, it added back in the emergency clause, and expanded the impact of SB 554 beyond what we’d be hearing was the agreement. 

If you care about 2nd Amendment rights, we need you to engage now more than ever. This fight isn’t over, and we need your help.

After the last two days of public testimony, the House Committee on Rules had a work session scheduled for this morning at 11am, but have recessed until 3:30pm this afternoon. Please reach out to the Democrats in the House and let them know how you feel about the bill and why you feel so strongly about it. Sharing your personal stories makes the biggest impact. You can find contact information for the each Democrat in the House HERE.

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Commercial Rent Relief Grants

Business Oregon opened their second round of applications for their commercial rent relief grants. This grant program is for building owners to cover outstanding lease payments from small business tenants that are behind on rent due to COVID-19. The grants can go up to $100,000 per each business tenant, but not more than $3 million for each landlord. There is $42 million available in this round.

The program is open for online applications as of April 22nd and will be open for two weeks, closing May 6. It is NOT first-come, first-served. Applications will be chosen by a random lottery system in any geographic regions that have more applicants than available funds.

For more information and the apply, please visit Business Oregon’s website.

Stayton Receives HUD Grant for Main Street Housing Opportunities

Last Friday, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded the City of Stayton a $500,000 grant to rehabilitate two buildings. The grants are funded through HUD's HOPE VI Main Street Program.

The City of Stayton will facilitate the development of residential units in the Deidrich Building and in the former Jensen-Krietzer Department store. The renovation of these two buildings in Stayton’s historic North Third Avenue corridor is the result of a long-term effort to revitalize the North Third Avenue Corridor that came together when the City Council adopted a Downtown Revitalization Plan.

You can read the entire press release HERE.

Deidrich Building in Stayton

Deidrich Building in Stayton pictured above. Photo credit: deidrich.com

COVID Vaccine Information

All Oregonians 16 years or older are now eligible to receive a COVID vaccination if they wish. For more information on getting vaccinated, please use the resources below.

To view previous newsletters, please visit my website.

Capitol Phone: 503-986-1417
Capitol Address: 900 Court St NE, H-378, Salem, OR 97301
Email: Rep.JamiCate@oregonlegislature.gov
Website: http://www.oregonlegislature.gov/cate