Rural Northwest Oregon Capitol Updates Vol 10

Senator Suzanne Weber

Dear Neighbors and Friends, 

It’s been a month since this legislative session began and it has been a blur of bills, meetings and floor sessions. Everything from holidays, snow days, events and interviews have kept me busy this week!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Martin's Valentine

Martin wanted to make sure to wish everyone a Happy Valentine's day!

Valentine’s is a day we celebrate our loved ones and significant others. But in Oregon we also celebrated the state’s birthday. This year marks 164 since Oregon was founded. Oregon was the 33rd state to be recognized and during that time only 54,000 people called the territory home. Over time Oregon has grown in population and industry. Our state has a rich history that goes well beyond 164 years with Astoria having been the furthest and oldest western settlement established over 200 years ago. I am proud to call this state my home am an honored to be serving as your state senator. 

Engaged Citizens Interview

I had the pleasure of meeting with Sharrie Ryan from Engaged Citizens of Columbia County to do an interview about what my days are like during the legislative session and how citizens can engage with my office best. You can watch the full interview here.

Wheat Growers Reception

This week me and some of my colleagues had the opportunity to attend the Wheat Growers Reception that was hosted on Monday by the Oregon Wheat Growers League and meet some wonderful folks from across the state that are involved in the wheat growing industry.

Wheat Growers

A Gorge-Ous Night in Salem

I was invited this week to A Gorge-Ous Night in Salem hosted by One Gorge which is a collaboration of various private and public sector leaders working together to promote the unique needs of the communities living near the Columbia River Gorge.


Capitol Construction


Construction at the capitol continues and so do the various sounds and obstacles accompanied with it. Our entrances have been even further restricted causing some traffic jams to occur from time to time in the security line.

Those entering the building from the north have to walk through the state capitol parks in order to find an entrance. Once inside, you can find various portions of the building being upgraded and worked on.


Angela Perry

Each week I get the opportunity to meet with my constituents to hear about what matters most to them and their communities. For example, I got to meet with Angela Perry who works for American Foundation for Suicide Prevention whose mission is to save lives and bring hope to those affected by suicide. They fund research to improve interventions, train clinicians in suicide prevention, and advocate for policy that will save lives. You can find information about what they do here

Credit Union Capitol Day

I had the opportunity to meet with 25 members of Oregon’s Credit Unions for their Credit Union Capitol Day. The office was packed with little to no elbow room, but we were able to discuss some important issues of concern to our state's credit unions. You can watch the rather amusing video of them leaving my office here.

Credit Union


Another week down, and nearly a dozen committee meetings have taken place. This week in the Education Committee we discussed bills addressing workforce shortages in education and funding for afterschool programs. In the Human services Committee we went over bills related to the welfare of children and the processes for reporting abuse. And finally, in this week's Joint Subcommittee on Education we went over various bills outlining expenditure limits for various state boards. We heard public testimony from many concerned citizens and held work sessions to discuss the various pieces of legislation that were assigned to us.

I encourage all my constituents to follow your legislature and to be informed of what goes on every day. You can watch committee hearings and floor proceedings. You can track bills and be notified when they are up for a hearing. I encourage you to visit and spend some time getting to know it. I have attached links that bring you directly to the tutorial video's on each of the "How To" lines below.

Coastal Caucus

The Coastal Caucus met nearly everyday this week to discuss matters that related to the coastal regions of our state. We continued our discussion about domoic acid levels and how they pertain to our various fishing and crabbing industries. We will continue to work on legislation that will improve our coastal areas and address concerns brought to us from our constituents and their communities.

Coastal Caucus

Local Matters

Job Corps

I’d like to encourage any of you who are interested in supporting workforce training to join Tongue Point Job Corps Center Workforce Council (CWC).   

The Center Workforce Council is made up of members of the public including industry trade professionals, public officials, union professionals and employment professionals. Attendees will provide feedback to TPJCC regarding the training provided in the twelve trades and will complete a short Professional Vocational Assessment form for us. 

The purpose of CWC is to obtain information on the relevance of the career tech programs to the needs of the current and future labor market for the trades and solicit guidance and recommendations for improving our curriculum, training and viability for our trade programs. 

The Center Workforce Council will review relevant labor market information to identify employment opportunities in communities where graduates will seek employment; and recommend appropriate changes in Center’s Career and Technical Training (CTT) offerings and/or curricula.

They have two options for attending. 

Virtually on March 8th at 2pm Pacific Time which will happen through our webpage which is

In-person March 16th at 10am at 37573 Old Highway 30, Astoria, Oregon 97103.

Please RSVP to with:

  1. Your name and business name
  2. Date you wish to attend
  3. Which trades you would like to visit
  4. How many in your business or group will be attending

You should have time to visit 2-3 trades. They really need participants to evaluate the following: solar, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, cement mason, glazing, plastering and computer service tech. Please plan on about two and half hours from start to finish. 

Choose from the following trades that fit your industry experience:

Building Construction Technology (including solar, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, carpentry)

Electrical (including lighting, solar, commercial, industrial)

Computer Service Technician






Dental Assisting

Certified Medical Assisting

Cement Mason


324 Oregon FFA Members to Receive the Oregon FFA State Degree. 


I want you to know how very proud I am of all of you. Congratulations to the Oregon FFA Members that will be receiving their State Degree during the 3rd General Session of the 95th Oregon FFA State Convention, March 17, 2023 at 7pm at the Deschutes Fair & Expo Center.

GraduatesGraduates 2

“Oregon FFA Association is a resource and support organization that does not select, control or supervise local chapter or individual member activities except as expressly provided for in the state FFA constitution, bylaws or policies."

FBO 2023 Legislative Summit


I was asked to take part and speak in Foundations for a Better Oregon education policy deeper dive on Friday. I had the pleasure of sharing the work my colleagues and I have done throughout the last year regarding educator workforce development.  

Three areas that we focused on were:  

Special Education Workforce - Diversifying the Teacher Workforce - Rural Educators 

You can see the presentation outline of the taskforce efforts here:  PowerPoint Presentation


Paid Leave Oregon offers website in six languages, adds new features

Paid Leave Oregon has refreshed its website, In response to community feedback, the updated website is now available in six languages: English, Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese. Other new features include:

  • An interactive contributions calculator so employers and employees can figure out their payroll contributions
  • A safe exit or "quick escape" feature – these buttons are used on websites for domestic violence and sexual assault survivors. The button helps web users quickly exit the site they're browsing and will automatically open a blank search page.
  • More detailed information for both employers and employees, as well as new sections for self-employed people, healthcare workers, and service providers
  • Videos that feature real Oregon business owners in our communities

Upcoming events

We are starting a Contributions Explained webinar series. Employers can learn more about Paid Leave Oregon and how to file their first Oregon Quarterly (OQ) report with Paid Leave contributions. Experts from the Oregon Department of Revenue and Frances Online will also attend to answer your questions. All sessions will have American Sign Language (ASL) and Spanish interpreters.​

Tuesdays, Feb. 28-March 28, 3-4 p.m. | Please register in advance

Paid Leave

Bills of Note

If you’ve had any connection to the Outdoor School program that many students experience in the 6th grade, you know that it can be an incredibly meaningful and powerful experience. At an age where there’s so much change and personal development, student bond together as they are learning in new ways. HB 3037 would harness the power of the Oregon State University Extension Service, and direct them to work together with the Department of Education to collect data that will allow us to make sure that Outdoor School is here to stay. HB 3037 is up for a public hearing in the House Education Committee on February 22. I encourage you to submit testimony in support of the bill.

If you know much about emergency management in Clatsop County, you’ve probably heard about the Salvage Chief. This incredible vessel was once a major part of recovery operations on the West Coast, and is still one of most well-equipped emergency salvage vessels in the United States. That’s why I’m sponsoring SB 200. This bill would provide $1.9 Million for hull and engine repairs for the Salvage Chief. While that isn’t a small amount of money, it certainly is a lot less than a new salvage vessel would cost. I hope you’ll join me in offering testimony in support of SB 200. It will have a public hearing in the Senate Emergency Management committee on February 21.

SB 853 is sponsored by every member of the Senate. That’s how common sense it is. This would make it so that employees of the State of Oregon who work remotely but who are called to the office for work must pay their own way to get there. Currently, some employees who live in other states and Washington, D.C. have their travel paid for by the state when they are asked to come to the office. I have no problem with people working from a home office. Most of my staff, at least for most of the year, work remotely. However, when I need them at the capitol, they know they need to get there and pay for any travel that’s required. It isn’t fair that people who live in Oregon have to pay for their gas and accommodations (several of my staff members are from District 16 and pay for a hotel room during session out of their own pockets) while those from outside of Oregon get it all paid for simply because they choose not to live in Oregon. This bill is up for a second public hearing before the Senate Labor and Business Committee on February 21, so be sure to submit your comments soon.

From the District

From The District with SW State Senator

We're here for YOU!!

As per usual our floor schedule is beyond our control.  But we will make time for you. Please email or call and my staff will get you on my calendar. My staff and I are here to help you! If you have a problem, question or comment, please feel free to email me at or

I do ask you to PLEASE include your phone number and your address. This allows me to call you to follow up or ask any questions I might have. Your address lets me know that you’re a constituent. I get thousands of emails every week, but I always make sure that constituents get top priority. If you’d prefer, you can also call us at 503.300.4493.

If you’d like to visit me in Salem, you’re always welcome to come by! If you drop by without an appointment, I’ll do my best to meet with you, but to ensure that I don’t have any other commitments, please call or email first for an appointment. That way I can make sure to give you my undivided attention.

Thank you so much for this opportunity to be your State Senator. It truly is the honor of my life, and I look forward to being your voice in the Senate for the next four years!

Capitol Phone: 503-986-1716  District Phone: 503-300-4493
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE, S-405, Salem, Oregon 97301
Email: Sen​
Website:  ​​