9/22/23 Senate District 15 Newsletter

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Senator Janeen Sollman

Friends and Neighbors, 

Upcoming Events

Community Conversation - October 7th

Join Team SD 15 on Saturday, October 7th @ 11:00AM - 12:00PM for a Community Conversation at the Hillsboro Shute Park Library. This is an opportunity to bring your questions and concerns and join the discussion. I look forward to seeing you!


Listen. Learn. Act.

National Hispanic Heritage Month 2023

Each year, National Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates the histories, cultures, and contributions of Americans whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America. This month long celebration serves as a reminder of the importance of cultural diversity and the invaluable contributions made by these communities to the United States throughout its history. 

National Hispanic Heritage Month originally started as "Hispanic Heritage Week" in 1968 through legislation sponsored by Mexican American Representative Edward R. Roybal of Los Angeles. The legislation was signed into law under President Lyndon B. Johnson. President Ronald Reagan expanded the observance in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15 and ending on October 15. The celebration begins in the middle rather than the start of September because it coincides with national independence days in several Latin American countries: Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Costa Rica celebrate theirs on Sept. 15, followed by Mexico on Sept. 16, Chile on Sept. 18 and Belize on Sept 21.

This year’s theme, Latinos: Driving Prosperity, Power, and Progress in America, pays tribute to the immense economic and political strides Hispanics have made in the United States.

Hispanics and Latinos have played a pivotal role in our country's strength and prosperity. As doctors and engineers; artists and entrepreneurs; and leaders in science, business, labor, government, military and across grassroots movements they have helped shape and strengthen the fabric of our Union. 

During National Hispanic Heritage Month, a wide range of events and activities take place across the country, including cultural festivals, art exhibitions, educational programs, and community gatherings. These events serve to promote a deeper understanding and appreciation of the Hispanic and Latinx heritage. Some events near year are listed below!

Additional events being held in Hillsboro can be found here.

Events Hosted by JUNTOS PDX:

Portland Latin American Film Festival (PDXLAFF):

The Portland Latin American Film Festival is dedicated to showcasing perspectives of Latin American culture through an exploration of Latin film and increasing the visibility of Latin American cinema locally. PDXLAFF presents films with universal appeal that can be enjoyed by native Spanish, Portuguese, and English speakers, and other lovers of the Latin culture. This year, PDXLAFF will be held at the Hollywood Theatre from September 27 to November 30 with a mix of seven feature films and documentaries from Argentina, Colombia, Cuba, Chile, Mexico, Panama, USA, and co-produced with Norway, Peru, United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, France and Denmark. Tickets are $14.00 for opening film, $12.00 for other screenings, and $9.00 for Sunday’s matinee. All films screened with English subtitles. For more information call 503-737-8605 or click here to buy tickets now and view their film lineup for the season!

Historical Photo

Dancers from La Amistad Youth Center (Independence), 1981, dancing in Schrunk Plaza (Portland) for National Hispanic Week. Courtesy Oreg. Hist. Soc. Research Library, 85258

Decarbonizing the Gas Grid: Lessons from Denmark and Sweden

Day 3 - Aarhus to Esbjerg, Denmark

  • Toured Green Hydrogen Hub, Lille Torup. This site is proposed to be converted to storage and use of green hydrogen. The project will utilize 3 of the 7 salt caverns. When weather allows more wind energy that is being demanded, excess energy will be used for electrolysis to generate green hydrogen. The storage will allow GHH to provide green energy all year round, regardless of the sun shining or wind blowing.
  • Visit to GreenLab Skive - This visit may have been my favorite! It is a unique, green and circular industrial park, created in 2019 to accelerate the green transition. It generates sustainable energy, supplies it to the businesses located in their park and also transforms it into heat, electrofuels, and other green products. They have projects worldwide, including Nevada. I cannot wait to learn more!

Day 4 - Esbjerg, Denmark

Today's theme was a transitioning economy and bringing your workforce with you.

  • Visited Esbjerg Business Park. Esbjerg evolved from Europe's biggest fishing port, to Denmark's oil and gas hub, to being the world's leading offshore wind port and now transitioning to become a future hub of Power-to-X. This little town of 72,000 has more than 250 companies working in the energy sector. In the plans for the future is a wind turbine power creating green (CO2-free) ammonia for use in the shipping industry as fuel! This is expected to reduce CO2 emissions by about 1.5 million tons yearly equal to removing 730,000 cars from our roads! 
  • Nature Energy Korskro Plant. This plant takes agricultural waste from approximately 100 local farms and turning it into energy. The first Nature Energy biogas plant was in 2015, now there are 11 across Denmark. They take manure from cows and pigs, organic waste from industry and retail and a small amount of energy crop. Their biogas is upgraded to RNG and injected in the nature gas pipeline. They also capture carbon dioxide for use in the food and beverage industry.

Day 5 of the Denmark/Sweden trip - Malmö, Sweden.

  • Our planned site visit in Malmö to see a geothermal system was unfortunately canceled, but our hotel and charter could not be changed, so we continued onward. On Friday, our last day, we held a re-cap meeting of the week. I am grateful to have experienced this one of a kind learning opportunity. What an amazing week!

NCSL Annual Conference - Deconstructing the National Housing Dilemma


Last month, the SD15 Team attended the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) Annual Meeting in Indianapolis. One of NCSL's seminars, titled "Deconstructing the National Housing Dilemma", focused on policy options to increase the supply of rental and owner-occupied housing and expand homeownership among low- and middle-income families. The seminar was led by Jeffrey Lubell who directs Housing and Community Initiatives at Abt Associates, and who previously served as director of the Policy Development Division in HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research. Top three things discussed during this seminar centered around increasing the overall supply of housing, expanding availability of workforce housing, and increasing homeownership.

Out and About in Senate District 15

El Grito - Hillsboro

This past weekend, Team SD 15 attended El Grito hosted by Centro Cultural at Shute Park in Hillsboro. "El Grito” is a spirited commemoration of Mexico’s independence from Spain and serves as a symbol of Mexican heritage and unity. 

The event consisted of ballet folklórico performances, Latin American gastronomy, artisan vendors, a car show, and community resources. It was a great day full of community and fun activities!


Corn Roast and Harvest Festival - Forest Grove

Team SD15 was also at the Forest Grove/Cornelius Chamber of Commerce Annual Corn Roast and Harvest Festival this past weekend! The community was out in force to eat the corn roasted by Forest Grove Fire & Rescue and Forest Grove Police. It was delicious! Just around the corner, Forest Grove's Valley Art Association Annual Sidewalk Chalk Festival was being held. This year featured a sustainability row of booths and vendors. We spotted 350pdx - Washington County Team and got some toothpaste tablet samples to try from Null Refillery. It was a beautiful day to be in the Grove. 


Cooper Mountain Tour 2023

Team SD15 joined Tualatin Hills Park & Recreation District this week, along with elected officials and representatives across all sectors of government, for a tour of a proposed expansion of Cooper Mountain Nature Park. Located at the top of Cooper Mountain, the existing park is accessible to surrounding cities, including Hillsboro, Beaverton and Tigard. As housing development increases in the area, an expansion of the park would mean the preservation of additional natural areas for a growing public to recreate and enjoy- a beautiful spot for hiking trails and watching wildlife.


Senate District 15 Small Business Spotlight

Photo from 2022

Su Casa Super Mercado

While many things have changed and developed in the greater Downtown Hillsboro area, one thing has stayed the same for over 40 years. Su Casa Super Mercado is not just a grocery store but a beacon of community at 10th and Walnut.

Owners Isabell and Rafael Mendoza are pioneers in the community and have worked very hard to build a store that their friends and family can be proud of. Su Casa has become a staple for Hillsboro's Latinx community and since 1982 has grown from a grocery store specializing in products from Central and South America, to include a bakery, restaurant, jewelry store, and check cashing counter. Patrons can find produce, meats, spices, candies, pan dulce and more!

Located at 050 SE Walnut St Hillsboro Oregon; Open 7AM - 9PM Monday through Sunday.

Community Outreach


2023 El Festival de Mariachi

Celebrate Hispanic culture through music, food and community at the 2023 El Festival de Mariachi hosted by Unitus Community Credit Union. This culturally vibrant and exciting family-oriented event is free and open to the public with no tickets necessary. Join fellow community members Sunday, September 24 from noon to 6:00PM at Ron Tonkin Field, 4460 Northeast Century Blvd in Hillsboro. Both admission and parking are free.

You’ll get a front-row seat to performances by local Mariachi bands and Hispanic groups including:

  • Ollin Yolliztli PDX
  • PSU Royal Rosa
  • Gemanereida Music
  • Mariachi México En La Piel
  • Ballet Folklorico Mexico en la Piel

Local vendors will offer lots of tasty savory and sweet food items, including tacos, drinks, and snacks and desserts.

The marketplace has a variety of toys, clothing items and crafts that showcase the richness of Mexican culture. Community-based organizations will be at the event to connect the community with local resources.

Oktoberfest - Downtown Forest Grove this Saturday

Oktoberfest in Downtown Forest Grove Oregon is a family friendly event taking place on the streets of 21st Ave and Main. Enjoy food, drinks, carnival games, bounce house, music, entertainment and more!  Dust off your dirndl and lay out your lederhosen for this epic annual event.


Swift watch

Swift Watch: Chapman Elementary 

Join the month-long viewing party as thousands of birds migrate through Portland each September. Swift Watch occurs at Chapman Elementary School during the month of September. Arrive one hour before sunset any night during the month. Many folks bring blankets or chairs as they sit on the lawn and watch the Swifts overhead.

Getting There:

  • Public Transport: Trimet buses #77 and #15 stop at NW Vaugh and 26th, a 5 min walk from the Chapman Elementary.
  • Biking: Ride your bike and find bike racks within the park by the basketball courts.

Please be a good neighbor to Chapman-area residents:

  • Do not expect to find on-street parking. There is free parking at the West parking lot at Montgomery Park after 5:30 p.m. Enter off NW Wardway.
  • During the event, leash and pick up after dogs.
  • After the event, pick up your trash and do not loiter on school grounds.
  • It is illegal to consume alcoholic beverages or smoke on public school grounds.

Imlay Elementary School Scholastic Campaign


This Fall HSD Imlay Elementary K-6th Grade School 2023 Book Fair will be ONE OF A KIND! HSD will be offering each Imlay student a FREE book of their choosing from the Book Fair.

This is being funded for the first time through a shared campaign and Scholastic Rewards. The student body will shop for their free book (up to $13) with their class and teacher from November 1st to November 3rd, before the fair is officially open. Imlay families and the community can also contribute to this wonderful cause by shopping at the fair in-person on Friday, November 3rd from 2:45 - 5:30 p.m. and on Saturday, November 4th from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. and also online during our fair (link will be shared at time of fair). A volunteer sign-up will be shared in the next month as well. 

This event gives students the chance to find a good fit book that they can call their own. Help spread the word about the campaign and visit here for more information.

Additional Resources

Senate District 15 – Event Calendars

Federal Delegation Links

Education Links

Food and Housing Assistance

Be good to yourself and each other. ❤

Onward & Upward,


Senate District 15 lies on Kalapuya land. The Atfalati were the northernmost band of the Kalapuya that lived along the Tualatin River in present day Washington County. Many of the Atfalati descendants are members of the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon today. The Indigenous Peoples of this land experienced a painful history of colonial violence, sickness and removal from their land. The Atfalati are the foundation of Oregon’s past and we must honor them well into our future.    

Capitol Phone: 503-986-1715
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE, S-207​, Salem, Oregon 97301
Email: Sen​​​.JaneenSollman@oregonlegislature.gov
Website: http://www.oregonlegislature.gov/sollman