Rep. John Lively Newsletter: First Day of the 2023 Session


January 17th, 2023

John Lively

Best wishes for a healthy 2023!

Today is the first day of the 2023 Regular Session. The session is limited to no more than 160 days, which means we will need to complete our work by June 25th. It is nice to be back in the building, even though the construction on the old Capitol building will change the way we do business. While the old Capitol building itself is closed, the office wings and hearing rooms on the first floor will be available for hearings. In addition, each chamber is open but with limited capacity for visitors.

Hearings and Contact Information:  Even though the hearing rooms are available again, some changes have been implemented including shorter times for hearings and some hearings held in the evenings. All hearings will be both in person and virtual to make testifying easier. However, the procedure to sign up to testify will now only be available online with the cutoff to sign up 30 minutes before the hearing is scheduled to begin. No same day signup sheets will be available in the hearing rooms. You can sign up and/or watch the hearing by using the Oregon Legislative Information System (OLIS) where meeting times, agendas and materials will be available for all scheduled meetings.  Here is an FAQ explaining the new system and how to testify and submit written testimony: Citizen Engagement Home ( 

If you have any questions about any of the changes or new procedures, feel free to call our office or email. Our office phone number has changed based on the new district number. The new number is 503-986-1407.  Our office email is the same:

Committee Assignments: I have two new committee assignments this session along with still serving on the Economic Development and Small Business Committee. The two new committees I have the honor to serve as the chair. The committees are the Gambling Regulation Committee and the House Committee on Higher Education. I co-chaired a joint committee on gambling regulation this summer so that work will continue with this new House committee. This is the first year in a long time for the House to have a separate Higher Education Committee. I spent time this past summer speaking with those in the higher education field to better understand the issues and challenges being faced. I look forward to the opportunity to advance the work in both areas.

Session Priorities: You have no doubt heard a lot about the session priorities from the Governor, legislative leaders, and others. On top of almost everyone’s list is legislation to address homelessness and the supply of housing, especially affordable housing. The Governor has already taken some executive action in both areas to start the conversation and set some goals. In addition, Oregon has an opportunity to secure some of the Federal money available to help expand the semiconductor industry. Doing so will require early action from the Governor and legislature to apply by the February deadline. This is a complex initiative which ultimately will involve not only additional state funds to provide as incentives, but also potential land use changes, environmental regulation streamlining, additional tax incentives and funds for needed infrastructure. K-12 education is always a priority and certainly will be this session based on the struggles many students continue to face. Advocates are requesting an additional $800 million for K-12 in addition to the current service level. That is a big lift based on all the other budget needs. We face a challenging budget with many programs needing additional funding to just keep up current service levels let alone expand needed services. Financially we start the session with a budget that is $500 million short of current service levels along with a forecast for potentially even less revenue. At the end of the day, we are required to balance the budget, which will require very thorough and thoughtful considerations along the way.

Legislation: While I work to limit the number of individual bills I introduce; I do have several covering a wide range of topics. They include bills related to Regionally Significant Industrial Sites(HB 2258); Increase in the estate tax threshold(HB2259); System Development Charges(HB 2260); Video lottery true up true down for Counties(HB 2261); Funding for County fairgrounds(HB 2510); Forestland Owners Liability(HB 2491); three bills related to Cannabis business relief(HB 2515), market growth(HB 2516) and enterprise zone requirements(HB 2517); a bill for the City of Springfield regarding “Climate Friendly & Equitable Community” rules (HB 2659); a Senate Joint Resolution regarding an Independent Redistricting Commission (SJR 10) and a Senate bill related to Recreational Liability. Yes, it is quite a wide range, though many are measures that have been introduced before and have not made it to the finish line.

Other: I am fortunate to have Andrew Hickerson continuing as my Chief of Staff this session along with a new member of our team, Miles Larson, to support our legislative efforts along with responding to constituent needs. In addition, we have moved our office and can now be found in Room 481 which is at the far west end on the fourth floor. I hope if you get a chance to visit during this session you will come by and at least say hello. In the meantime, if we can help you in any way please email us at or call at 503-986-1407.




email: I phone: 503-986-1412
address: 900 Court St NE, H-488, Salem, OR, 97301