Capitol Updates - HD 31 Vol. 8

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Representative Brian Stout

Hello Friends and Neighbors, 

As spring rolls around each year, we know that Easter celebrations are just around the corner. It's a time to (hopefully) forget about the winter woes, including snow, focus on new life, pastels and getting together with family. Easter falls on the first Sunday following the first full Moon of Spring, on or after March 21. This week we celebrate Good Friday and Easter, also called Resurrection Sunday.  This traditionally religious holiday is part of a bigger Christian celebration involving Lent and "Holy Week" and falls specifically on the beloved weekend that begins with "Good Friday". 

Cherry Blossoms

Scappoose Peace Candle

Scappoose Peace Candle

If you have ever driven Highway 30 in Scappoose, you most likely recognize the image on the right.  The Peace Candle, which has now stood for over 50 years, stands approximately 50-feet, has a diameter of 18-feet and was once coated with 45,000 pounds of multicolored wax and topped with an actual wick.

On Mother's Day 1971, then-Governor Tom McCall dedicated The Scappoose Peace Candle to the people of the world. Each season the candle was re-coated with different colors to match the time of year, with red for Christmas and multiple colors being used in the fall.  The wax around the candle was eventually replaced with more durable wax-like substances. 

The renovation of the local icon nears completion now that the neon flame replica was installed this last week. A new "Welcome to Scappoose" sign has been added and the completion of site landscaping, final electrical work and the information pedestal is slated for later in April.

No Joking Around...More Bills to Ponder

April Fools'

April Fools' Day 2023 is now behind us, and I hope you were not pranked too seriously.  Many of us around this state wish that someone would proclaim "April Fools'" after many of the bad bills are passed by the democrat-controlled legislature. This newsletter will highlight several bills that you don't want, and that is No Joke.

HB 2002  Modifies provisions relating to reproductive health rights. Modifies provisions relating to access to reproductive health care and gender-affirming treatment. Modifies provisions relating to protections for providers of and individuals receiving reproductive and gender-affirming health care services. This bill is extreme! It is government stepping in to take the place of the parent by taking away the age of consent requirements for "reproductive health care".

OR House GOP HB2002


SB 704 Establishes Universal Health Plan Governance Board and directs board to create comprehensive plan for implementing Universal Health Plan.  The new single-payer universal health care plan has built in $22 billion in new taxes. An employer tax on those Oregonians who earn $160k and below will be taxed at 7.25% and those who earn over will be taxed at 10.5%.

According to the Oregon Health Authority, 94% or 3.7 million Oregonians already have health care coverage. There are approximately 243,000 uninsured people in Oregon. If 80% of those 243,000 made use of the existing Oregon Health Plan or other subsidies on, the number of Oregonians uninsured would drop to 34,000. That would have state coverage at 99%. This seems like a solution looking for a problem.

Oregon gun

House Bill 2005 A is the amended version of House Bill 2005 that also includes the provisions of House Bills 2006 and 2007. This has now become an OMNIBUS bill. (In the United States, omnibus bills are sometimes known as "Big Ugly" bills, which seems an appropriate name for this bill.)  It goes above and beyond existing federal laws and regulations in restricting private individuals from making their own firearms for personal use, denies Second Amendment rights to young adults aged 18-20 by prohibiting them from possessing semi-automatic firearms, and further weakens Oregon’s preemption law in order to allow localities to prohibit concealed carry in public buildings and on their grounds.

School Choice Bills

HB 3135  Preserves additional funding for small school districts that merge with one or more school districts if certain conditions are met.

HB 3204  Establishes and modifies timelines related to enrollment of students in virtual public charter schools.

School Choice

Community Safety is still our concern.

Columbia Sheriff Grads

On March 10, 2023, Columbia County Sheriff's Office Deputies Moreland, Lapping, and Villarruel graduated from the Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards & Training Basic Corrections Academy. This state mandated training takes place in Salem and has academic and physical components. We commend all three of them for completing this important training and are happy to have them back to their families and official duties. Congratulations to all three of these deputy sheriffs.

We love seeing our community in the Capitol!

Office Blessing

My staff and I are here to help you! If you have a problem, question or comment, please feel free to email me at 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 hundreds of emails every week, but I always make sure that constituents get top priority. If you'd prefer, you can call us at 503.986.1431.

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.

To stay connected, please follow me on Facebook or sign up to receive my e-newsletters, as they are published, by emailing me or calling my office.

Thank you so much for this opportunity to be your State Representative.


Brian's signature

Representative Brian Stout
House District 31

Capitol Phone: 503-986-1431
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE, H-380, Salem, Oregon 97301