Holiday Festivities and More!

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Representative Susan McLain

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I hope everyone counted their blessings and spent time with family during the Thanksgiving holiday. I am looking forward to December when we can celebrate our personal holidays and beliefs, spend more time with family, and get a little time to relax before the busy Session begins. 

In preparation for the exciting 2023 Session, I am working with diverse coalitions and asking what the public thinks of particular policies. I am looking forward to conversations on a wide variety of issues, such as helping the homeless, increasing safety in our communities,  providing the best education system available for students, and producing strong support for teachers and students catching up from the pandemic conditions. Social justice is also high on my list of community needs. With forward movement comes the work of actual implementation, and providing opportunities for social and wrap-around services is important.

Picture of Rep. McLain and her Legislative Team!

The 2023 Legislative Session is just around the corner. I am focused on finalizing bill concepts, preparing for Legislative Days, and for our upcoming Bi-State Bridge Committee meeting on December 12. I am doing all of this with the help of a great team!  I am excited that my office is now fully staffed for the next Session and we have already hit the ground running! Carolyn Lee has been with me for two years now and will continue on, and Gabby Mijalski-Fahim returns to my office after working with us during the 2021 Legislative Session and then moving over to the AFL-CIO as a canvassing supervisor. We also have Ishaan Sinha, a recent Glencoe High School graduate and National Speech and Debate competitor, as our intern. Ishaan will be sharing more about his intern experiences in our next Newsletter. 

Ishaan also serves as the intern for Hillsboro's Youth Advisory Council, and I had a wonderful time visiting with YAC students at a meeting he organized on Tuesday night. The Council members learned about the role of a Legislator, how to advocate for policy changes, and the processes involved in engaging in a formal Legislative Session. We even talked about transportation and the important role that our transit systems plays in all our lives. As a former teacher, I always love interacting with students, and especially connecting them to our civic and political processes in a variety of ways. 

Hillsboro Youth Advisory Council Members


I also had another recent opportunity to engage on the issue of public eduction by visiting the Early Learning Washington County Hub to meet with their Co-Director, Begoña Rodriguez Liern, and some very engaged parents. Early Learning Washington County (ELWC) is a partnership between the United Way of the Columbia-Willamette and Washington County Health and Human Services. We have Early Learning Hubs in16 regions across Oregon that are getting Human Services, Health, Early Learning, K-12 Education and Business Sector partners to work together to create local systems that are aligned, coordinated, and family-centered. This unique partnership brings diverse organizations, parents, and communities together to support families in raising strong, healthy children. In my role as Co-Chair of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Education, I have seen the profound impact that Oregon's Early Learning Hubs have in our state, and here in Washington County, and am proud to support them. I look forward to working with Washington County's Early Learning Hub more, and to engaging with other Hubs across the state.  

Early Learning Hub Washington County




capitol building in salem

Here are some important dates to keep in mind as we prepare for the 2023 Session:

December 2nd-4th - House Democratic Caucus retreat: This is a great opportunity to gather with other lawmakers and discuss and plan policy priorities for the upcoming Session. 

December 7th-9th - Legislative Committee Days: During Legislative Days, Committees hold informational hearings on topics that may lead to legislation in upcoming sessions, hear updates on previous implementations, hear reports from state agencies and Task Forces, and keep current on the subject areas affecting Oregonians.  The Senate may also convene for the purpose of confirming the Governor's executive appointments.  For more on the upcoming Legislative Days schedule, visit here or read on to the next section of this newsletter for more details. 

December 12th - Bi-State Bridge Committee meeting: The next meeting of the Interstate 5 Bridge Bi-State Committee will be at 9:00 am and can be viewed here.

December 21st - Deadline to pre-session file bills: Read more about the Oregon legislative process here.

January 9th - Swearing-in of Legislative Members: For a list of newly elected members,visit the Secretary of State's election results page here.

January 17th - The 2023 Legislative Session begins!:  The 2023 Session Calendar can be found here.  




I will be co-chairing two hearings during Legislative Days (the Joint Subcommittee On Education and the Joint Committee On Transportation) and also participating as a member on the Joint Emergency Board and as Vice-Chair of the House Interim Committee On Agriculture, Land Use, and Water. I look forward to providing you an update on what we discussed in our December 14th newsletter. If you are interested in viewing these hearings either live or recorded, please use the links below:

Joint Subcommittee on Education: 12/7/2022 11:30 AM

House Interim Committee on Agriculture, Land Use, and Water: 12/7/2022 2:30 PM

Joint Committee on Transportation: 12/9/2022 8:30 AM

Joint Emergency Board: 12/9/2022 12:30 PM

***For more information on how to follow Legislative Days proceedings, visit the Capitol website's page on public participation!




Winter Break Dates


Hillsboro School District Free Meals

Students who attend Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) schools are eligible to receive a healthy complete breakfast and lunch at no charge. No further action is required of you. Your child(ren) are able to participate in this meal program without having to submit a meal application. If your child chooses not to participate in the meal program and brings a meal from home, a milk may be purchased for $0.75 each. Water is available at no charge. If you have a child(ren) who attends another school(s) in the Hillsboro School District and are not included in the CEP or have not been notified of other meal benefits, you will need to fill out a free or reduced-price meal application to become eligible.  

2022-2023 Participating Schools

Brookwood, Eastwood, Free Orchards, Lincoln Street, McKinney, Minter Bridge, Mooberry, Reedville, West Union, WL Henry, Witch Hazel, South Meadows, Hillsboro High, Oak Street Campus

Apply Online For Free/Reduced Meals


A group of high school students visits Jireh Semiconductor

Hillsboro launches State's first HS manufacturing apprenticeship

Our students at Century High School students are currently participating in Oregon’s first-of-its-kind, industry-recognized youth apprenticeship program, the Advanced Manufacturing Youth Apprenticeship program. The Hillsboro School District launched it in partnership with the City of Hillsboro and local businesses in September. As apprentices, students are employed by the partner company and have the unique opportunity to learn on the manufacturing floor. Upon successful completion of the program, they will receive accreditation from the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) and will become certified to work anywhere as a manufacturing technician. Nationally, apprentices earn on average $300,000 more over the span of their careers than non-apprentices.

Learn more in the fall District newsletter, A Look Inside Hillsboro Schools, and on the Apprenticeship Opportunities page of their website.


Forest Grove School District Free Meals


If your child attends one of the CEP (Community Eligibility Program) schools, they will not be charged for Breakfast or Lunch.

2022-2023 Participating Schools 

Cornelius Elementary School, Fern Hill Elementary School, Echo Shaw Elementary School, and Joseph Gale Elementary School. 

Apply Online For Free/Reduced Meals



We Care Deeply Series

Parents and caregivers of Forest Grove School District are invited to join our district Mental
Health Care Coordinators, Hanna Thompson and Kendra Pittman, for an introductory suicide
prevention training called Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR).

When: December 5, 2022 from 6-7pm
Where: Virtual (Registration required) --> Link to Register


suicide awareness flag

The Forest Grove School District is in the process of interviewing architects after voters approved a $121.9M bond.

The Forest Grove School District is interviewing architects to design a new building for Cornelius Elementary School.

Superintendent David Parker told the school board Monday, Nov. 28, the district plans to start by the summer a host of projects made possible by the $121.9 million bond measure voters approved earlier this month.

After months of planning, including forming a committee for public input, Parker said the new Cornelius Elementary building is expected to break ground "next winter." Construction will take place alongside the current facility, so class can continue until students can switch over the new building, hopefully in time for the 2025-26 school year.

Other projects starting this summer include safety upgrades to campuses' main points of entry, tracks at Neil Armstrong Middle School and Tom McCall Upper Elementary School, and a renovation of the Community Alternative Learning Center in the district's former administrative offices off Taylor Way.

The district will also build two new classrooms at Forest Grove High School to reinstate an education pathway for aspiring teachers. Students will gain experience in district prekindergarten classrooms, which are expanding to every elementary school thanks to bond revenue.

The bond passed with nearly 55% of the vote, a difference of around 1,200 votes.

Currently, the school bond levy rate is $2.15 per $1,000 of assessed home value, which school officials say is the lowest the rate has been since 2001. Starting next year, the levy rate will increase to $3.65 per $1,000.



The annual Washington County Chamber of Commerce Awards Gala will be held Thursday, Dec. 8, in Hillsboro, according to a press release from the Hillsboro-based business organization.

First held in 1988, the awards recognize "extraordinary members of our community making significant contributions."

While several award recipients have already been announced, the annual President's Award and Legacy Award winners will be announced on the night of the event.

The gala will take place from 5 to 9 p.m. at Northwest Events and Environments, located at 2900 N.E. Century Blvd., Suite 100, in Hillsboro.

Pre-registration is required and includes hors d'oeuvres and a choice of entrée. Tickets start at $75.

Register at the Washington County Chamber of Commerce website or by contacting Brian Watson at 503-726-2145.


Cornelius Tree Lighting 

Large christmas tree decorated in blue string lights and a blue star, surrounded by people


When: December 2nd, 2022 at 6pm

Where: Veterans Memorial Park
1251 Baseline Street, Cornelius

Event Agenda: 

FG High School, Neil Armstrong Middle School and Cornelius Elementary choirs will perform.

After the tree is lit, everyone will enjoy holiday singing at
Cornelius Elementary School
(200 N. 14th Avenue, Cornelius, OR 97113)


Hilhi Holiday Bazaar

hillsboro high school logo of a blue knight

When: December 3rd at 10am - 4pm

Where: Hilhi Commons and Cafeteria at Hillsboro High School
3285 SE Rood Bridge Road, Hillsboro

Event Agenda:

Over 100 local vendors, both old and new to Hilhi's bazaars!

Come enjoy local crafts, yummy food, raffles and entertainment from some of our own Hilhi students!

This event goes to help support the 2023 Hilhi Safe and Sober Grad Night Party.

The 2023 Grad Night Party is also hosting a textile drive and can drive during the bazaar.  Bring your re-sellable clothing, in white or black trash bags, to the Hilhi parking lot.

Bottles and cans can be dropped off at the same location!


Hillsboro Holiday Market

lights on a tree


When: Dec 3rd at 10am – 2pm

Where: Helvetia Farm Market, 23137 NW West Union Rd, Hillsboro

Event Agenda: 

Local vendors all around the market will be sampling and talking about their lovely products while you sip & shop for the Holidays! They'll have the bonfire going and be serving their usual specialty coffees, so come enjoy the holiday scene, and pick out a Christmas Tree & wreath while you're here!


Holiday in the Grove


The City Club hosts this annual event that is sure to get you in the holiday spirit!

When: Dec 4th at 8:30 am to 5pm

Where: Multiple locations in Forest Grove (see agenda)

Event Agenda: Start the day with breakfast and photos with Santa at the Forest Grove Senior and Community Center, sip cocoa and make crafts with police, and browse the Artisans Holiday Market and Ornament Sale for handmade gifts from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Forest Grove Auditorium. And don't miss the Holiday Light Parade in downtown Forest Grove that starts at 5 p.m.


Light Up Hillsboro Menorah Lighting

             Pamplin Media Group - Hillsboro's Hanukkah celebration returns without  restrictions

When: Dec 18 at 4:15-5:45pm

Where: Jerry Willey Plaza at Orenco Station, 943 N.E. Orenco Station Loop

Event Agenda:

Join others to celebrate the beginning of the Jewish holiday Hannukah!

Festivities include doughnuts, potato latkes, live music, and a fire juggler.




Washington County Emergency Shelter Interactive Map

Washington County Warming Shelters Map

Click on the image above or here for the Washington County Emergency Shelter Map


Winter Shelter Program

The Winter Shelter Program has historically operated between November and March to provide life-saving emergency shelter. Until Washington County increases year-round shelter capacity, winter shelter capacity is critical to keeping people safe from the winter elements. 

From November 1, 2022, to May 31, 2023 Washington County funded four winter shelter sites throughout the County for youth, individuals, and families. Locations include the Hillsboro Cloverleaf building, the Beaverton Community Center, and motel vouchers for families and medically fragile individuals. 

To access shelter and housing resources, contact Community Connect (our coordinated entry system to receive services) at 503-640-3263 or email communityconnect​​

If someone outside is unsheltered and whose life appears to be in danger, call 9-1-1. Otherwise, if you see someone about whom you are concerned during cold weather call the police non-emergency number at 503-629-0111 and request a welfare check.


Safe Rest Pods on SW 17th Avenue

The City of Hillsboro, Washington County, and OpenDoor Housing Works acted quickly to provide unhoused community members with temporary emergency shelter near Dairy Creek Park.

The Safe Rest Pods opened on October 21. Move-in is on a rolling basis as pod construction continues.

The temporary site meets critical community needs, mitigates unmanaged camping, and connects people experiencing homelessness to permanent housing options. 

  • Location: SW 17th Avenue and TV Highway
  • Duration: October 2022 through March 2023
  • Capacity: 30 to 40 individuals or couples
  • Services: 24/7 onsite staff, mental health support, and housing navigation


Year-Round Shelter Project

Responding to the community’s desire for long-term solutions to the challenges faced by people experiencing homelessness, the City of Hillsboro has acquired property on Hillsboro’s western edge — near the City of Cornelius and Dairy Creek Park — for a future, year-round sheltering site. 

This site will become the first year-round emergency shelter in Hillsboro. Once open, it will be operated by a nonprofit partner and funded through Washington County.

The property in the 300 block of SW 17th Avenue, at the corner of TV Hwy and SW 17th Ave, includes significant green space and two currently vacant structures. 


Washington County activates emergency shelter in Hillsboro

                                        COURTESY PHOTO: PROJECT HOMELESS CONNECT - Project Homeless Connect staff operate the emergency homeless shelter in Hillsboro

The shelter at the Salvation Army Building is open through Sunday Nov. 21. For transportation to the shelter, call 503-846-4722.

Due to high winds and freezing temperatures, Washington County has activated it emergency shelter for inclement weather.

The facility is at the Salvation Army Building at 1440 SE 21st Ave. in Hillsboro.

The shelter will remain open 24 hours throughout the severe weather event. Hot meals are provided for guests. No one will be turned away, and pets are allowed.

For transportation to the shelter, call 503-846-4722.




cartoon people


Make your holidays merry by preventing respiratory viruses like RSV

An increase in severe respiratory infections this season is putting pressure on Oregon’s already-strained hospitals as the holidays approach. But health officials say people can take simple steps to avoid exposure – and the need for an emergency department visit – as they gather for celebrations.

According to OHA data as of Wednesday, the RSV hospitalization rate for children nearly quadrupled between Oct. 29 and Nov. 5, from 2.2 to 8.7 per 100,000 population. The rate dropped slightly by Nov. 12, to 5.7 per 100,000, but that was still double what it was two weeks earlier.

RSV hospitalization rates for adults have been lower, although there remains a risk of serious illness for older adults.

OHA offers the following tips for staying healthy and avoiding an unnecessary hospital visit during the holidays:

  1. Get a flu shot and stay up to date on COVID-19 vaccinations, including new bivalent boosters.
  2. There is no vaccine or treatment for RSV, but people can protect themselves by covering coughs and sneezes, cleaning high-touch surfaces, and regularly washing their hands with soap and water or using hand sanitizer.
  3. Consider wearing a mask during indoor holiday gatherings and events. Anyone at risk for getting severely ill from RSV – young children and older adults– should consider wearing a mask when indoors with people who are not in their household.
  4. Because children younger than 2 are too young to safely wear a mask, parents and caregivers should consider asking those around them to wear a mask.

People experiencing mild symptoms of RSV should:

  • Stay home from work or school, and avoid holiday gatherings and events.
  • Manage fever and pain with over-the-counter fever reducers and pain relievers.
  • Drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.
  • Make sure to talk to your health care provider before giving your child over-the-counter cold medicines which are typically not indicated for this age group.

However, parents and guardians should immediately seek health care if their child is experiencing more severe symptoms of RSV, such as trouble breathing, dehydration, gray or blue color to the tongue, lips or skin, or significantly decreased activity and alertness.





Increased emergency SNAP benefits to continue in December

Most Oregonians who receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits will receive emergency allotments in December. 

Current SNAP households will receive emergency allotments on Dec. 13. Emergency allotments will be issued Dec. 30 or Jan. 4, 2023 for households who did not receive benefits in the first monthly issuance.

SNAP recipients do not have to take any action to receive these supplemental benefits as they will be issued directly on their EBT cards. 

More information about emergency allotments is available at

Questions about your SNAP benefits should be directed to the ONE Customer Service Center at 1-800-699-9075.

If your household receives SNAP and your income or the number of people in your household has changed, it could impact your benefits. It is important to make sure ODHS has the most up-to-date information. 

You can report any changes to your income or household in many ways: 

  • Online at:
  • By mail at: ONE Customer Service Center, PO Box 14015, Salem, OR 97309
  • By fax at: 503-378-5628
  • By phone at: 1-800-699-9075 or TTY 711


Resources to help meet basic needs

Administered by ODHS, SNAP is a federal program that provides food assistance to approximately 1 million eligible, low-income families and individuals in Oregon, including many older adults and people with disabilities. Oregonians in need can apply for benefits, including SNAP, child care, cash assistance and Medicaid. Learn more at . For local resources in your area, such as food or shelter, please call 2-1-1 or reach out to the state’s Aging and Disability Resource Connection (ADRC) at 1-855-ORE-ADRC or 1-855-673-2372.




New Oregon ‘landscape resiliency’ grant program aims to curb wildfire risk, protect lives and property



A $20 million landscape resiliency grant program is making Oregon’s landscapes more resistant to the threat of wildfire by treatments done through unique partnerships with private landowners and other local county, state and federal agencies.

Oregon’s 2021 Legislature invested nearly $195 million to address Oregon’s wildfire crisis through Senate Bill 762. Of this $195 million, $20 million created a two-year landscape resiliency and mitigation grant program that the ODF has been administering. 

Just over 200,000 acres of Oregon landscapes are planned to be treated by June 2023, when the program ends. These projects in some of the highest-risk landscapes will greatly reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire in those treated areas. Not only will it make the forestland around communities and resources safer, but it will also encourage forest health, resiliency, ecosystem health, and shared stewardship. 

For more information visit ODF’s Landscape Resiliency Grant Program website.



Oregon Rising Logo

OEM has put together this list of contacts to help speed up the process of replacing these documents:

The Governor’s office has put together a Wildfire Resources page that you can access from the Governor’s home page.  It has links to many of the most important updates about the status of fires and resources for evacuees.  This website will be updated regularly.  

Legal ResourcesOregon State Bar’s Lawyer Referral Program, Oregon lawyers, through the Oregon State Bar, are partnering with FEMA and the American Red Cross to provide legal assistance on FEMA claims, contract claims, insurance claims, landlord-tenant matters and more.

The Department of Forestry’s Wildfire Response and Recovery Overview has ongoing updates about firefighting efforts, damage reports, and more.  

FEMA UpdatesFEMA has provided several different Fact Sheets and resources for accessing benefits, determining eligibility and avoiding scams.




picture of veterans

Mental Health Services:

  • Washington County Crisis Line | 503-291-9111
  • Crisis Text Line | Text “Connect” to 741741
  • Suicide Prevention Lifeline | 1-800-273-8255
  • Trevor Lifeline | 1-866-488-7386




Employers and Employees

The following list of resources is from Oregon’s Secretary of State’s Office. The fastest way to get in touch with the SOS team is by emailing, using the “Need Help?” button found on most state agency websites or visiting

Education Links

Local Government

Utilities Assistance

Food and Housing Assistance



Oregon Health Authority


Winter has almost arrived in Western Washington County!

Winter scenes!


Yours truly,

Representative Susan McLain

Representative Susan McLain
House District 29

email: I phone: 503-986-1429
address: 900 Court St NE, H-376, Salem, OR 97301