January in Review and A February Preview

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Courtney Neron

Dear Friends and Neighbors, 

So much to share! In this newsletter, you’ll see my January review with a list of bills that have been considered for hearings, what I’ve been up to, as well as a preview of February. 

But first of all, February is Black History Month and I invite you to recognize and celebrate the legacy and achievements of Black Americans. Throughout this month, I will be highlighting a few upcoming events and ways families can celebrate and learn more. Here are a few upcoming events, readings, and websites to share: 

  • The City of Tigard is celebrating Black History Month and has many books to read and a great list of local Black-owned businesses to support listed on their website
  • OMSI will have a Nelson Mandela exhibit available through Feb 13th. Some companion exhibits include “Movement in Oregon Counties” describing the struggle for civil rights in Oregon, and profiles of Black scientists, past and present, in locations across the museum.
  • Sherwood Center for the Arts is hosting a family Matinee series. This Saturday a group of dancers and drummers based in Oregon and known as "Ekome" will be performing traditional Ghanaian music and dance. Find out more and get tickets here.

January in review 

Meetings with our Mayors! 

While I am often in touch with King City Mayor Fender, Wilsonville Mayor Fitzgerald, and Sherwood Mayor Rosener in their cities, I was honored that they came down on city day to visit with me in Salem! Hearing from and collaborating with local leaders is key to the work that I do. I look forward to working together to bring investments to our region, as well as passing key priorities that our constituents care about with regard to housing, behavioral health, environmental protections, childcare investments, strong schools and safe communities.

Rep Neron with King City Mayor Fender and Councilor Manelis

We met with King City Mayor Fender and Councilor Manelis.

Rep Neron and Sen Woods with Wilsonville Mayor Fitzgerald, Councilor Akervall, and Greg Leo

Senator Woods and I had a joint meeting with Wilsonville Mayor Fender, Councilor Akervall, and Greg Leo.

Clackamas Caucus at Clackamas County Courthouse Groundbreaking

Clackamas County Courthouse Groundbreaking Ceremony 

Last Friday, was the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Clackamas County Courthouse! In 2021, our Clackamas County Caucus of legislators helped secure critical funding needed for this public/private partnership. The new Courthouse will have phenomenal energy certification and seismic safety ratings, put Oregonians to work on construction, and allow us to deliver timely and trauma-informed procedural justice. Judge Kathy Steele is well-known among our Clackamas Caucus for handing out yard sticks, the distance between her courthouse office and the crumbling cliff, 100 ft above the Willamette River.

Find out more about this project: https://www.clackamas.us/courthouse

Rep Neron speaking at Washington County Education Legislative Summit

Washington County Education Legislative Summit 

Last weekend, we had our annual Legislative Education Summit at the Northwest Regional Education Service District building, hosted by local school board members and ESD leaders. We had a great conversation about the importance of sufficient and stable funding, universal school meals, literacy, career and technical education, educator training, and behavioral health, among other important topics.

Public Hearings and Testimony 

  • Homeshare, HB 3032 - My bipartisan homeshare bill structures a simple tax incentive for people to consider renting their unused bedrooms at affordable rates. It makes use of already constructed housing supply. The bill provides win-win possibilities as it builds financial resilience for at-risk homeowners while expanding access to affordable rental housing for low income Oregonians. You can watch the full recording of the hearing here
  • Publicly Supported Housing protections, HB 3042 - this bill is in direct response to the Woodsprings apartments in Tigard, where an expiration of a federal affordable housing subsidy and subsequent sale of the property to investors, destabilized 172 senior residents on fixed and low-income. The bill gives us a tool to stabilize communities (when rents increase from subsidized to market rate), and protect impacted residents with notification requirements and a stable rent period of three years, also known as “safe harbor”. While the bill may be too late to benefit Woodsprings, I hope we can learn from it and prevent this from occurring elsewhere in the future. You can watch the full recording of the hearing here
  • Stabilizing the Current Service Level (CSL) Funding for Education, HB 2739 - One of my top priorities this session is to modernize the way the legislature calculates the roll-up budgets of our school districts from one biennium to the next. HB 2739 sets a table for a transparent and collaborative CSL conversation, focused on accurate data, current contracts, real purchasing power, and the latest information used to determine the CSL. We have an opportunity to understand and depoliticize the true CSL for education, which is core to our ability to understand if we are looking at a cuts budget or stable budget allocation. Please watch the hearing here
House Education Committee in public hearing
  • Toxic Free Kids Modernization Act, HB 3043 - We must improve our policies that keep families safe from harmful exposure to chemicals. This bill expands the Toxic Free Kids Act of 2015 by allowing the Oregon Health Authority to remove classes of harmful chemicals from products marketed to children. I am championing the Toxic Free Environments package which also includes the Toxic Free Cosmetics (SB 546) and the Toxic Free Schools (SB 426). Please watch the hearing on HB 3043 here and learn more about the Toxic Free Environments package on the Oregon Environmental Council (OEC) website

Thanks for joining our Joint Town Hall! 

Team ABC (Aaron, Ben, Courtney) held our first Joint Town Hall at the King City Civics Association which is central to our Senate District and one block from the line dividing HD25 and HD26. Representative Ben Bowman (HD25) and I are the two House members whose districts nestle precisely in Senator Woods district (HD13). The event was well attended and questions ranged from climate, to addressing our housing and homelessness crisis, to school funding, a wide variety of local issues (including speeding, land use, new roads, and the “orphaned highway” Hall Boulevard), and more. Thank you to Sen. Woods and Rep. Bowman for a great discussion! And thank you to all who attended. Your engagement matters. 

Joint Town Hall with Reps Neron, Bowman, and Sen Woods

If you’re interested in learning more, here’s a Pamplin Media article with a summary of the event. And if you missed the event but want to chat with me, be sure to sign up for my Tuesday office hours, open from 12-1 pm.

Upcoming Events

Wilsonville Town Hall 

Mark your calendars for Saturday, March 4th from 12-1 pm for a town hall with Senator Woods and myself! 

Wilsonville Town Hall Graphic

This month, Senator Woods and I will be available to meet with constituents on March 4th from 12-1 pm in WIlsonville City Hall. Please feel free to join us for a discussion about what's happening in the local community, or to ask questions about the legislative session. If you can't make it to this conversation, or are not in the Wilsonville area, we are planning to have more events in every part of the district, so stay tuned!

In the News

Mourning California Mass Shootings and Tyre Nichols

As you likely heard, California had two mass shootings recently, in Monterey Park and Half Moon Bay leaving 18 dead and many deeply traumatized. My sincere condolences go out to the victims of the attack, their families, friends, and the impacted Asian American community. The Lunar New Year is a time for families and communities to come together and celebrate a new year of peace and prosperity, but we are devastated by the senseless violence. Please read the BIPOC Caucus press release (with mental health resources) to process the news here.


Text to 911 

Did you know that if you are in a dangerous situation and cannot call 911, you can text law enforcement and emergency responders thanks to Text to 911. Text messages can be especially helpful for those who cannot speak due to an accident, breaking into a house or intimidating a partner, for the deaf, hard of hearing or with a limited address program.

Please note that there are some limitations including: 

  • Text to 911 can only support tests in English at this time 
  • Send your message directly to 911 only 
  • Text only numbers and letters as 911 cannot receive photos, videos, or emojis
  • Avoid texting abbreviations that can cause confusion 
  • Call if you can, text if you can’t. Texting should only be used when you are unable to make a voice call to 911

Veteran Mental Health Care 

Beginning in January, veterans in acute suicidal crisis can now go to any VA or non-VA health care facility for emergency health care at no cost. This expansion will increase access to acute suicide care for up to 9 million veterans who are not currently enrolled in the VA system. 

Visit www.va.gov/REACH for resources and information, or call 988 (then press 1) to quickly connect with caring, qualified crisis support 24/7. For more info, visit the link here

As we’re in a marathon for the long session, we want to hear from you! Please reach out with any questions, concerns, or ideas at rep.courtneyneron@oregonelgisalture.gov or give us a call at 503-986-1426. Be sure to stay connected to my Facebook and Instagram page to get regular updates! 

Until next time!

Rep Neron signature

Capitol Phone: 503-986-1426
Capitol Address: 900 Court St NE, H-281, Salem, OR 97301
Email: Rep.CourtneyNeron@oregonlegislature.gov
Website: http://www.oregonlegislature.gov/neron