Session Accomplishments, New Housing Partnership, Scam Alert & More


Senator Floyd Prozanski
South Lane and North Douglas Counties
District 4

900 Court St. NE, S-413, Salem Oregon 97301
Capitol phone: 503-986-1704
e-Bulletin                     August 2022

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Dear friends,

I hope this finds you well and staying cool, having endured our late July heat wave. With very dry conditions now upon us and little-to-no rain in the forecast, any ignition could mean catastrophe. Please keep up your efforts this summer, avoiding use of open flames, fireworks and driving in grass. If you're camping or working outdoors with gasoline engine equipment, please determine what restrictions are in effect. If you head to the water to cool off, remember that many of Oregon's rivers are still extremely cold and individuals can be overwhelmed. It's wise to wear a life preserver when recreating on our waterways.

    Click here to listen to my most recent interview (7/25/22) with Kyle Bailey on KQEN's "Inside Douglas County," during which I share a legislative update.

    Below you will find information on:

        - 2022 Session Accomplishments: Healthy Communities & Caring for Oregonians
        - Introducing the Oregon Department of Emergency Management
        - State of Oregon and City of Eugene Announce House America Partnership
        - Workforce Ready Grants: Building Capacity for Workforce Programs
        - Scam Alert: Fraudsters Posing as Computer Software Company
        - State Award for Lane County Fairground Capital Improvement Project

    I hope this information is helpful and informative for you or someone you know. As always, feel free to share your comments, questions or concerns with me by phone, mail or e-mail.

                                                               Sen. Prozanski signature

2022 Session Accomplishments: Healthy Communities & Caring for Oregonians

   Following the 2022 Legislative Session, I'm sharing in-depth summaries of bills passed by subject area. Below is a comprehensive listing of accomplishments related to healthy communities and caring for Oregonians — by Senate/House bill and in numerical order:

Senate Bills

    SB 1529 - Primary Care Access and Public Health Response: This legislation focuses on two areas of our health care system. The first part focuses on public health and allows the Oregon Health Department public health director to take action if a communicable disease, reportable disease, disease outbreak, epidemic, or other condition has affected more than one county; if there's an immediate need for a consistent response; if the local public health system is likely to be overwhelmed; or if there is a significant risk to public health. Upon approval of the Governor or Designee, the director will coordinate response across jurisdictions, identify, assess and control the situation, and allocate and distribute needed supplies to respond to the public health emergency. SB 1529 provides workers compensation coverage for volunteer emergency health care providers injured while under the director's authority or engaged in training conduct and approved for preparing for an emergency. The second part of SB 1529 requires insurers to provide three primary care or behavioral health care visits annually without co-pay. It applies to policies or certificates of insurance issued, renewed, or extended on or after October 1, 2023, for coverage during the 2024 plan year.

    SB 1548 - Choice & Workforce Retention in Community-Based Services: Oregon's Individual Developmental Disabilities (IDD) system serves more than 32,000 adults and children. This legislation will provide transparency, accountability, safety and quality standards for our IDD community. It sets out rule adoptions to ensure fiscal transparency in services provided by community-based services and providers who are licensed, certified and endorsed by the Oregon Department of Human Services. SB 1548 also sets out safety standards for sprinkler systems in residential training homes or adult foster homes if licensed before July 2024, have five or fewer individuals, and meet all fire, life and safety requirements established by the Department of Human Service and Oregon Health Authority. Finally, the bill creates a third service option for in-home services allowing individuals with IDD the "agency with choice" to select a worker that best meets their needs.

    SB 1554 - COVID-19 After-Action Report: COVID-19 revealed the importance and urgency of a modern public health system. This legislation requires the Oregon Health Authority to study our state's response to the pandemic by focusing on how we could better utilize our resources and coordinate emergency management response. This study will focus on workforce challenges identified, as well as needed investments. A final report with recommendations will be due in September 2023.

    SB 1556 - Registry of Caregivers: Oregon's long-term care sector is projected to serve 34,461 Oregonians in the 2021-2023 biennium. We are currently facing a shortfall of about 6,000 care workers who provide daily living activities. This legislation creates a phased-in certification for caregivers working in in-home care and community-based settings. It also creates a publicly accessible certification registry and builds a foundation for a career ladder to encourage job mobility and advancement for caregivers.

House Bills

    HB 4003 - Addressing Oregon's Nursing Workforce Crisis: COVID-19 has exacerbated the nursing workforce shortage already existing in Oregon. With limited nurse staffing in our clinics, it's becoming almost impossible to meet the basic needs of patients. This legislation addresses the nursing workforce shortage by creating a nurse internship license available to students who are enrolled in and have successfully completed at least one academic term of nursing school and by establishing a healthcare workforce committee to study, identify, and describe the challenges in addressing staffing shortages in the nursing field.

    HB 4004 - Expanding Oregon's Behavioral Health System: In 2021, the Legislature made transformative investments in Oregon's behavioral health system, yet behavioral health providers are struggling to attract and maintain staff due to inadequate pay rates. Our state's behavioral health system will continue to face a workforce crisis without immediate investments to recruit and retain staff. This legislation creates a grant program that Oregon Health Authority (OHA) will administer to distribute grants to behavioral health providers to help increase staff compensation, retention bonuses, recruit and hire new staff, and provide hiring bonuses. It also allows OHA to contract with nurses and behavioral health professionals to provide care in adult and children residential behavioral health facilities, opioid treatment programs, withdrawal management programs and sobering centers to help address staffing shortages.

    HB 4035 - Access to Vital Health Services via the Oregon Health Plan: COVID-19 brought hardship to many in our communities, requiring the State to step in and provide health insurance to those who lost a job, were laid off or could not pay for private insurance. As we transition out of this pandemic, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) must go through a redetermination process for every Oregonian on the Oregon Health Plan (OHP). House Bill 4035 establishes goals for OHA to work through this process while minimizing disruption on those who currently use the OHP.

    HB 4095 - Veterans Dental Program: Senate Democrats believe that health care is a basic human right, and that includes oral health care. This legislation establishes a Veterans Dental Program to provide oral health care to low-income veterans in Oregon beginning in 2023.

Introducing the Oregon Department of Emergency Management

    Oregon's Office of Emergency Management (OEM) is now officially operating as the Oregon Department of Emergency Management. A result of HB 2927 (2021), this transition establishes OEM as a standalone cabinet-level department reporting directly to the Governor. The agency previously served as a division of the Oregon Military Department since its founding in 1981.

    The Oregon Department of Emergency Management will operate under the familiar acronym of OEM  Oregon Emergency Management  to continue building on the agency's credibility and recognition. A rebranded logo prominently features the outline of the state to better represent all communities it serves.

    Becoming a standalone department coincides with unprecedented growth in state-level emergency management. Since the 2021 legislative session, OEM has more than doubled its staff and seen budgetary increases to fund the increased capacity. These investments have allowed for a restructure of the agency to better support local and tribal jurisdictions through all phases of disasters, including readiness, response, mitigation and recovery. Regional coordination teams now serve as dedicated local points of contact, bridging gaps and strengthening relationships with emergency management professionals. These coordinators are joined by a tribal liaison for Oregon’s nine federally recognized tribes; and key roles to guide and implement inclusion, equity and accessibility initiatives unique to each community.

    OEM has also expanded its mitigation capacity to assist and guide investments in risk reduction initiatives, looking forward at the shifting hazards to mitigate the risk of impacts caused by a changing climate. Recognizing that disasters have a disproportionate impact on vulnerable populations, the department is prioritizing a comprehensive and equitable approach to emergency management. OEM will continue to evolve its policies and programs to better support all communities in the state, with intentional focus on those historically marginalized and underserved. Identifying and mitigating factors contributing to existing disparities is key to ensuring programs and resources are equitable, inclusive and accessible.

    HB 2927 also transferred the Oregon Emergency Response System (OERS) call staff from the Department of State Police to OEM in the 2023 biennium, and it transferred the Oregon Homeland Security Council from OEM to the Governor's Office. Additionally, the bill created two advisory councils to provide recommendations to the Governor's Office and OEM on emergency preparedness, response, mitigation and recovery: The Emergency Preparedness Advisory Council on which OEM has a seat, and the Local Government Emergency Management Advisory Council, for which OEM will provide staff support.

State of Oregon and City of Eugene Announce House America Partnership

    Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS) and Eugene Mayor Lucy Vinis have announced that the City of Eugene has joined U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) initiative, House America: An All-Hands-On-Deck Effort to Address the Nation's Homelessness Crisis. The announcement was made at the opening celebration for The Nel, a permanent supportive housing community for people experiencing chronic homelessness in Eugene.

    OHCS and other House America partners will work with HUD and the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness to use federal, state, and local resources to help achieve national goals. The House America partnership aims to re-house at least 100,000 households experiencing homelessness nationwide and add at least 20,000 new affordable homes into the development pipeline by December 31, 2022.

    Oregon is committing to re-house 3,500 people and fund the creation of 214 permanent supportive homes by the end of 2022, including small towns and rural communities in the state. The City of Eugene commits to adding 152 units to their housing development pipeline to serve people exiting homelessness, an additional 47 units for extremely low-income households, and is committed to re-housing 45 households from homelessness into housing by the end of the year.

    HUD's 2021 Annual Homeless Assessment Report found 9,048 sheltered and unsheltered homeless individuals in Oregon, 2,317 of whom were in Lane County. COVID-19 has created greater urgency to address homelessness, given the heightened risks faced by people experiencing homelessness.

    Through the American Rescue Plan, communities now have historic resources — 70,000 emergency housing vouchers and $5 billion in HOME Investment Partnerships grants — to help more Americans obtain the safety of a stable home. In Eugene, HUD awarded 184 Emergency Housing Vouchers and $4,728,637 in HUD HOME Investment Partnerships Program funding, a resource that can be used to achieve Eugene’s housing goals.

    More than 100 states, cities, counties, and Tribes have joined House America to date. For more information, visit the HUD House America website.

Workforce Ready Grants: Building Capacity for Workforce Programs

    Workforce Ready Grants (WRGs) are one component of Future Ready Oregon, a comprehensive $200 million package of strategic and targeted investments to support the education and training Oregonians need for family-wage careers. WRGs are available to nonprofit and public workforce service providers and community-based organizations that administer workforce programs in the health care, manufacturing and technology industry sectors and prioritize equitable program participation by individuals from priority populations.

    The Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) will release up to $9.8 million for organizational investments that can be referred to as capacity-building grants. This first round grants are intended to broaden the type, number, and capacity of organizations that comprise Oregon's workforce system. By expanding representation in the workforce system, HECC hopes to increase the availability and usage of culturally and linguistically appropriate workforce services.

    The first round of grant funds can be used for activities intended to increase the grantee's capacity to launch, expand, sustain, or support workforce programs in the health care, manufacturing and technology industry sectors. The Request for Application (RFA) document includes more detail regarding allowable capacity-building activities, timelines, guidelines and requirements for applications. Potential applicants have access to Technical Assistance providers who can help them better understand the terms and requirements of the RFA and provide feedback on application materials at no cost to them. The contact information for Technical Assistance providers is included in the RFA.

    The RFA and registration links for the information sessions can be found on HECC’s Grants and Contracts webpage here. The application deadline is August 13, 2022.

Scam Alert: Fraudsters Posing as Computer Software Company

    The attorney general is warning Oregonians to watch out for e-mails from scammers posing as computer software company, McAfee. These e-mails look like they came from McAfee and claim your account has been "re-approved" and your credit or debit card was charged hundreds of dollars. At the very end, they encourage you to call a specific phone number if you would like to cancel.

    If you receive a suspicious e-mail that supposedly comes from a company, look carefully at the email address and the domain from where it was sent. When you examine the sender's address, if you see that the email originates from a domain not associated with the company (i.e., or, it is likely fake and you should delete the email without clicking any links.

    If you think you may have fallen victim to this scam or want to share that you have received a similar email, contact the Oregon Department of Justice online at or call 1-877-877-9392. They want to hear from you so they can protect all Oregonians from scams and fraud.

State Award for Lane County Fairground Capital Improvement Project

    Lane County's Fairground Capital Improvement project has been funded in the amount of $277,777 by the Legislature via HB 5006 (2021) for ADA improvements of the Wheeler Pavilion. The Pavilion serves a critical need as a warming shelter and the ADA improvements will help Lane County serve residents better for this purpose and other community events at the facility.

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