President Biden's BOEM Offshore Wind, Umpqua Community College's Legacy Ball, Honoring Veterans, Senate President Wagner Visits Roseburg and Bandon for Douglas, Coos & Curry County Community Leaders Listening Session and Supporting Our Oregon Agriculture

Southwest Oregon's Fish, Farm & Forestry District

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Senator David Brock Smith
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Hello Friends,

I hope you and your family had a wonderful and Blessed Thanksgiving. It has been a busy month in the District and around the state! My apologies for the delay in getting out a newsletter. As you know, I put these together myself and it has been extremely busy.

First, lets talk about President Biden's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) floating offshore wind being proposed off my district and my work with our Oregon Legislative Coastal Caucus, our fishermen, tribes, state agencies, residents, elected federal delegation and other stakeholders on engaging the public to raise your voices to oppose BOEM. 

As the former Chair and Vice Chair of the Oregon Legislative Coastal Caucus, former Vice Chair of the House Committee on Energy & Environment and the former Co-Vice Chair of the Joint Committee on Carbon Reduction, where I helped lead the effort to stop Cap & Trade, I have been at the forefront of everything energy in the State of Oregon for the last 7 years in the Oregon Legislature. Previous newsletters on my Legislative Website go into much greater detail of that work to protect our rural communities, their residents and businesses from democrat energy policies that would have negative impacts to our region and the state. 

BOEM's Proposed Floating Offshore Wind

I have been pushing back on the federal agency Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (CLICK HERE) push for offshore wind off of my southern Oregon coastal District since long before 2019. BOEM had their first task force meeting on this in March of 2011 and part of the initial process was the Territorial Sea Plan. (CLICK HERE) Many of us were engaged back then on the TSP. Please understand that BOEM is a federal agency. I am an Oregon State Senator and have little to no influence over federal agencies. If I did, we would have stopped this long ago as well as be preventing wildfires by logging forests that are under federal management, and our industries, residents and their communities would be thriving because of the utilization of the natural resources that built them and are meant to sustain them.

Having been involved with this issue longer and more than my Oregon Legislative Coastal Caucus colleagues, I was appointed by them to take the lead. Some assert that since I drafted and we passed legislation in the ’21 Session, that I fully support BOEM in putting these turbines off my district. It’s ridiculous. Please remember that democrats in the Oregon Legislature have the majority. No piece of legislation can receive a hearing or move without their saying so. That said, the language in the legislation must be approved by them. The reality is that Oregon democrats can pass any piece of legislation they want (except raising taxes, as long as we can maintain our current numbers, but by working together we can increase our numbers and take our state in a new direction, CLICK HERE for a recent article) without a Republican vote. Yet, my colleagues and I are able to stop a lot of bills that are harmful to our state, industries, residents and their communities. I digress.

Our Oregon Legislative Coastal Caucus knew it was critically important to engage the legislature in the federal BOEM process because if we did not, it would have been left to Governor Brown. That would have been unacceptable and disastrous for our Oregon coastal communities, our fishermen and residents. So we worked with stakeholders and drafted HB 3375 to engage the state in the federal BOEM process. California allocated $100 million dollars to deal with BOEM and their offshore wind designations. Oregon has not allocated any dollars at all and the fiscal was pulled from HB 3375 in order to pass the bill, because again without it, engagement with BOEM would have been left to Governor Brown. HB 3375 passed unanimously in the House. We did not get the language we wanted in the bill because of the above and Governor Brown, however the important part was that the bill made the state agencies engage in broad stakeholder engagement, (fishermen, tribes, businesses, industry) the public and others to investigate the “Benefits and Challenges” for Oregon if BOEM were to move forward with floating offshore wind. ODOE held three public meetings in March, April and May of 2022 (even though the bill only required two) and the report was delivered in September. (CLICK HERE) for the report and other information. The report in the end said there is a, “Need for Further Study, Engagement, and Collaboration”.

I attended every meeting.

During this same time, I led the effort for my Oregon Legislative Coastal Caucus Colleagues and created 6 listening sessions in our coastal communities from Astoria to Brookings. We worked with our fishing industry stakeholders and wanted to get the word out to the fishermen, residents and industries about President Biden’s federal agency BOEM proposed projects. They were well attended and I am grateful for our fishermen and the publics time and engagement. It didn’t matter if a speaker was wearing a “Trump 2024” hat or an environmentalist, their voice was the same – NO to offshore wind on our coast. Attendees said, “we need more time to study its impacts to our fisheries, we don’t know how this will impact our California current, electromagnetic fields could impact salmon and crab, and most of all, we need more public engagement.” This was my and my Coastal Caucus colleague’s goal, let the fishing industry and public know what the federal BOEM was trying to do and get their voice on the record about this issue.

I of course attended every meeting.

From the very beginning, we also pushed BOEM to use the fishermen data that is collected where they catch their fish and is submitted to NOAA. BOEM uses NOAA’s spatial planning tool in other areas of sighting ocean projects, specifically in the Gulf of Mexico. For the first time ever in their process, BOEM used NOAA’s spatial planning tool in considering the call areas off of the southern Oregon coast.

With these collaborative efforts and raising the voices of our fishermen, public, tribal governments and other stakeholders, BOEM then and my understanding is for the first time in their process, (they have areas off the east coast and California) held three public outreach meetings, two of which the Director of BOEM herself attended. They held them in Newport, Coos Bay and Gold Beach. I had a conflict and could not attend BOEM’s Newport Meeting but I did attend in Coos Bay and Gold Beach. Coos County Commissioners Main and Sweet joined me in Coos Bay as well as fishermen and concerned residents.

ODOE then held another public meeting to go over the report in Coos Bay at the Mill Casino that was also heavily attended. I want to thank Chair Meade and the Coquille Indian Tribe for hosting the meeting. I made sure the public was able to speak and ask questions. More feedback was given there as well and the theme was the same, “we need further study, engagement with stakeholders, tribal government and the public”.

We then attempted to broaden the engagement utilizing a neutral party through Oregon Consensus so that we can continue to make sure BOEM was hearing the voices of our fishermen, tribes, the public and their broad opposition to their proposal. We also knew that again, BOEM is a federal agency that was going to deploy in federal waters, and we needed to be prepared if we couldn’t stop their progression.  Governor Brown refused to engage and give the dollars to help facilitate the work needed through Oregon Consensus. It was going to cost around $20,000.00 dollars. We could have brought in private resources from either industry side, but we did not want any perception that the work was “influenced” by any particular group. Finally, we were able to find a grant through DLCD and the high level work began. Oregon Consensus began working with leaders in the fishing industry, business and community leaders and other stakeholders. The time was tight because there was no way of telling when BOEM was going to move forward and we needed the data before the next legislative session was completed.

The Oregon Consensus Report was delivered in May of 2023. (CLICK HERE) From the Report, “Oregon Senator Brock Smith and the Coastal Caucus of the Oregon Legislature asked Oregon Consensus to assess the potential benefits and challenges of a collaborative process for informing community benefit agreements related to floating offshore wind leasing. This initiative was supported by the Department of Land Conservation and Development.”

Further from the report:

Strong, sustained leadership from a state’s agencies, legislature, and governor are helpful.

              A commissioner from the California Energy Commission helped organize state agency roles, and state bill AB 525 required the California Energy Commission to create a strategic plan for offshore wind energy development. These two actions provided clearer goals and roles.

Maine’s Governor Mills launched an offshore wind energy initiative in 2019 housed out of the Governor’s Office of Energy. The collaborative effort developed an Offshore Wind Roadmap that set strategies around economic growth and resiliency, climate change, innovation, fishing and coastal communities, and environment.

 The state Consistency Review for a BOEM action under the Coastal Zone Management Act is a strong nexus for Oregon to shape floating offshore wind energy development.

              California conducted a consistency review for the wind energy areas before the lease auction. The consistency review made it clear to energy developers the requirements California would apply to energy development, including engagement with environmental justice and local communities, Tribes, fishing groups, and seafood processors.

States can engage with non-governmental interests differently than BOEM can. 

              Both California and Maine state agencies have invested a lot of their own time forming relationships with fishing groups, Tribes, and coastal communities. Maine had a more formal state-led structure for engagement with groups of stakeholders, California’s state-stakeholder engagement was more informal and in 1:1 settings according to interviewees. Engagement does not always change positions, but public comments from the Maine Lobstermen's Association acknowledged the extensive outreach conducted by the State of Maine.

 States and public comment influence what BOEM does.

              The State of California (and California’s congressional delegation) played important roles in identifying where call areas were and negotiating with the Department of Defense on those call areas.

Public comment in California adjusted the bid credit categories from 20 percent for workforce and supply chain and 2.5 percent for lease area impacts to 20 percent for workforce and supply chain, 5 percent for lease area impacts, and a new category at 5 percent for general impacts.

 Multi-state cooperation is of interest.

              Interviewees from California agencies are interested in coordinating with counterparts in Oregon agencies to support consistency for fishing groups, seafood processors, energy developers, and others.

              Maine is participating with NH, MA, RI, CT, NY, NJ, MD, and VA to create a regional fisheries compensation fund to be funded by energy development to have resources for unforeseen impacts of Atlantic wind energy over time.

 Process Insights and Recommendations

Oregon Consensus’s assessment has revealed that the timing is not yet ripe for a collaborative process to delineate community benefits from offshore wind energy development. We do not recommend a collaborative process on this topic at this time. Especially for Tribes, fishing groups, and seafood processors, the community benefit conversation cannot be disconnected from their efforts to restart the process to locate call areas. These stakeholders regularly mentioned in our interviews that they have a range of broader, unanswered, and significant questions about the potential impacts of offshore wind. These outstanding questions would make it difficult to collaborate solely on addressing community benefits, and would require providing these stakeholders and others with more detailed information to address their other concerns.

 Address other process gaps

Beyond community benefits, many interviewees stressed their interest in processes to better engage community and local voices in the discussion around offshore wind in general. Some of those broader process gaps, beyond talking about community benefit agreements, include the need for

  • federal and state government to consult more robustly with Tribes;
  • basic education about offshore wind impacts and benefits, and where in the process the public’s voice can influence decisions;
  • a venue for the public to ask questions and get those questions answered–whether that requires additional research or just access to existing information;
  • more robust analysis of possible cumulative impacts and benefits of offshore wind; and
  • clarity about the State of Oregon’s expectations and goals relative to offshore wind development


The challenge of expanding Oregon’s renewable energy capacity, strengthening the economic resilience of coastal communities, and sustaining an environment and fisheries for future generations is significant. That level of potential change requires effective collaborative processes in which leaders and community members can ask important questions, hold difficult conversations, and make tough decisions. Oregon Consensus is not recommending moving forward on a collaborative conversation to form community benefit agreements at this time. But we did hear consistent views on what coastal communities envision for community benefit investments, and we did hear ideas for how future collaboration could support difficult conversations and decisions that need to occur. The assessment offers a timely snapshot of the status of this issue in the state and beyond. It can be a useful tool for Oregon decision-makers, coastal communities, and Oregonians as a whole, and can lend insight into these issues for other states that, like Oregon, are in the early stages of tackling issues around offshore wind energy.

Again, we needed BOEM to engage more with our fishing industry, communities, tribal governments and residents. Not knowing when BOEM might decide to move forward, we again needed the Legislature to engage as we could not leave the engagement to now Governor Kotek alone. So we drafted SB 678 to protect the fishing industry, our communities and residents to make sure there would be a structure for community benefit agreement language in place, a mitigation fund set for displaced fishermen, investments in job training for students and other safeguards, again, so that we did not leave sole negotiating authority with BOEM on these and other important coastal issues with Governor Kotek, if we were not able to stop BOEM and they were to move forward with their leases. Ultimately the bill did not pass because we wanted to fund at least one position within DLCD to be a point of contact with BOEM, the fishing industry, tribal governments, communities, public and other stakeholders, rather than leaving it with Governor Kotek’s Office. The democrats refused to fund the $250,000.00 dollars.

We continued to push back and asked Governor Kotek to engage to help our residents and their communities. She crafted a letter to BOEM in August and we pressed her to request a 60 day comment period rather than BOEM’s normal 30 day. They agreed, and this was yet again another first. The letter said:

“Dear Director Klein,

Thank you for your letter dated July 10, 2023, and our continued conversations on the feasibility of offshore wind in Oregon. As my administration develops greater collaboration with community, fishing, and Tribal stakeholders, we see value in developing more transparency around the proposed call areas and BOEM’s draft wind energy areas. The BOEM Oregon Intergovernmental Renewable Energy Task Force last met more than a year ago on February 25, 2022. While we understand that BOEM has met individually with community and Tribal members in the interim, the broader public has not had access to BOEM’s proposed analysis of least-conflict wind energy areas,  developed over the course of the last 16 months.

To better inform our state and community experts during this pause, my administration requests that BOEM share the draft wind energy areas through a series of public meetings and a Task Force update. To ensure that the public has an opportunity to provide feedback to BOEM on its analysis, we further ask that BOEM provide a 60-day comment period on the draft wind energy areas.

We look forward to working closely with your team to develop meaningful opportunities for communities to continue to engage with BOEM on its work to date. If you have any questions or require further information, please do not hesitate to contact Governor Kotek’s Natural Resources and Climate Advisor, Karin Power.

Remember that I was the Co-Vice Chair of the Joint Committee on Carbon Reduction and then Representative Karin Power was the Co-Chair. As I mentioned above, I helped lead the effort to stop the democrats from passing Cap & Trade. As I also said above, in the absence of legislative involvement, the engagement with BOEM would be solely with Governor Kotek. We could not and can not allow that to happen. BOEM did return and held three more public meetings. I was unable to attend as it was during the same time as Legislative Day’s in the Capitol.

Also during this work, we were engaging with our federal US Senators and House Members to enlist their support to help stop BOEM from moving forward, or at least slow down their process and have more input from stakeholders and residents. They have sent Multiple letters to the Director of BOEM on this issue.

Congressman Defazio and Senator Wyden stated in a letter dated June 22, 2022:

“We write to express our significant concerns about the siting process for floating offshore wind facilities in federal waters, especially the Calls for Information and Nominations (Calls) off the coast of Oregon, near Coos Bay and Brookings. We urge BOEM to take a thorough, systematic, fully-inclusive, and collaborative approach to ensure that economic, environmental, and safety impacts of floating offshore wind facilities in the Coos Bay and Brookings.”

US Senator Merkley stated in a letter to the Director of BOEM on September 22, 2022:

“It is imperative, however, that offshore wind be done right, with the support of the coastal Oregon communities who will be impacted.

The Oregon coast is a unique and special region. The California Current off the Oregon coast comprises some of the most biologically productive waters in the world and the upwelling that occurs there is essential to the environmental health of the open ocean ecosystem. The Oregon coast has not been industrialized in the way that the rest of the country’s coasts have.

When I go to coastal communities I hear many concerns about the potential impacts that offshore wind could have on our communities and our ecosystems. Many Oregonians have expressed their openness to offshore wind but they want to understand the impacts that it will have on their coastal communities and fisheries-based economies. Marine scientists, engineers, environmentalists, coastal municipalities, seafood processors, marine suppliers, commercial and recreational fisheries have all reached out to me. We cannot move forward with wind off the coast of Oregon until these important stakeholders feel confident that their needs are being considered.”

There was a letter on August 8th of 2023, from US Senator Wyden and Merkley, along with US Congresswomen Hoyle and Bonamici sent a letter to the Director of BOEM that said in part:

“Thank you for instituting a pause on the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM)’s Oregon floating offshore wind leasing process to provide Governor Kotek’s administration additional time to consult with stakeholder groups and coastal communities. We write to continue to urge you to make sure all voices are elevated and considered in the planning and analysis phase of the offshore wind leasing process in Oregon.”

“In June of 2022, members of the Oregon delegation wrote to BOEM expressing concern that Tribes, coastal communities, and fishing communities had been left out of the initial planning process. A year later, in June of 2023, the Oregon delegation reiterated many of these same concerns in a letter to BOEM sharing that these communities had not been adequately consulted.”

“It is critical that BOEM develops a deep appreciation of all community interests and fully studies every opportunity to reduce conflict with all ocean users before making substantial development decisions.”

“We request that you set up three public, in-person meetings in Oregon coastal communities to hear directly from them. During these meetings, we ask that you share information of how input will be evaluated and incorporated, and how participants can bekept engaged and informed throughout the entire planning process.

We stand ready to support all efforts for robust public engagement as BOEM explores the opportunity for wind development off the coast and what that would mean for Oregon’s communities.”

This is unprecedented! Where our Democrat US Congressional delegation is bucking the Biden Administration’s 30 gigawatts by 2030 mandate!

As you can see, I personally have put in countless hours in these efforts to stop BOEM, and my Legislative Coastal Caucus colleagues and I are grateful for our fishing industry, tribal government, community leaders and residents support for raising their voices in opposition to BOEM. As you can see in the picture below, all of these efforts have not given us the ultimate result we would like, to stop BOEM altogether, but they have made a dramatic impact on the size of the proposed BOEM call areas. When BOEM first proposed their call areas, we immediately pushed back hard and they removed the one off of Port Orford. With our subsequently collective stakeholder engagement efforts, pushing BOEM to use the NOAA spatial planning tool and your voices, the initial call areas that started at 1,395,840 million acres have now been reduced to 219,568 thousand acres. (The blue areas within the outlined call areas in the photo below is now BOEM’s proposal) They are 15.7% of their original size! It is also my understanding that two developers have already pulled out and chosen not to bid on the leases if BOEM moves forward because of the complexity of the project (nowhere in the world are there any turbines deployed as would be off of Oregon) as well as the significantly reduced areas for deployment because it would not be cost effective. All of this is because of your voice and all of the robust work outlined above!

There was a letter sent to Governor Kotek on the 20th (that I received on the 21st) from our great fishermen, processors, suppliers and other stakeholders. In the letter, they reference our work of forcing BOEM to use the spatial planning tools and that of HB 3375 stating, “The voices of NOAA combined with the detailed feedback from Oregon agencies and the Pacific Fishery Management Council to BOEM clearly demonstrate that much more needs to be understood about the impacts of floating offshore wind before leases are auctioned off.”

Without HB 3375, there would have been no detailed feedback from Oregon agencies to BOEM, with the emphasis on needing more information on the impacts and stakeholder engagement.

The letter continued to speak about the later work with Oregon Consensus that we worked hard to put together as I explained above, stating, “At the same time, a diverse group of stakeholders has been convened to consider a roadmap for offshore wind energy development off Oregon. The group is made up of representation from fisheries, environmental organizations, labor, and renewable advocates. The group is in the early stages of convening but shows promise in determining a consensus approach for identifying needed information and high-level principles on how the offshore wind energy siting process should take place off Oregon.”

This collaborative work is critical and my Legislative Coastal Caucus colleagues and I have been engaging our fishermen, ocean users and stakeholders for years!

I also want to thank the County Commissioners of Curry, Coos and Douglas County in our Senate District 1 for their resolutions of opposition as well. We collectively need your continued engagement on this issue! My colleagues in the Oregon Legislative Coastal Caucus need you to stay engaged on this issue with us. Your voices on these issues matter and we will continue to elevate them to the our fellow State Legislators, the Governor, our Federal Elected Representatives and BOEM.


Umpqua Community College's Legacy Ball Fundraiser to Raise Awareness and Resources for our Youth's Education 

I had the opportunity to join Representatives Osborne and Goodwin, Douglas County Commissioner Freeman and hundreds of Umpqua Valley community leaders and residents to support Umpqua Community College. It was an amazing turnout with over 40% of the attendees in attendance for the first time. The generosity of the community members present helped raised nearly $370,000.00 dollars for student programs at UCC. All of this is a testament to the leadership of UCC President Dr. Pokrandt and her Board of Directors. 



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Honoring Veterans in Roseburg

I have the utmost respect for our Veterans. My father, Frank W. Smith, is a 27 year retired Navy Lieutenant Commander, Mustang. He is the best man I know and I work everyday for the residents of District 1 with him in my thoughts.

I was honored to join Representatives Osborne & Boice, Douglas County Commissioners Freeman & Boice (Commissioner Kress was judging the parade) and Congresswoman Hoyle at the Annual Roseburg Veterans Parade. It was an incredible event and it was great to see so many residents out supporting the Veterans of the Umpqua Valley. I want to thank my colleagues for letting me join them and for Congresswoman Hoyle for joining us to celebrate our Veterans. 



Community Listening Sessions with Oregon Senate President Robert Wagner

Joint w&m big pic

April 21st Oregon Legislative Joint Committee on Ways & Means in Roseburg at Umpqua Community College

Many of you may remember and participated when we were able to bring, for the first time, the Oregon Legislature's Joint Committee on Ways & Means (the Legislative Committee that is tasked with the state's budget) to Roseburg in April to listen to your funding priorities. 

Last month, we had the opportunity to have Oregon Senate President Robert Wagner to listen to some community leaders of Douglas, Coos and Curry Counties in Roseburg and Bandon.

Roseburg Senate President Listening Session at Aviva Health

President Wagner, Representative Osborne, his Chief of Staff Jenn and I started in Roseburg and I want to first thank KC Bolton and his staff at Aviva Health for hosting us and Steve and Shelley Loosley for providing bagels, coffee and all the extras.

We listened to and discussed a broad number of topics with the group that attended. Needed infrastructure replacements such as aging water and sewer lines and processing facilities in our rural communities. Land use laws were also discussed and the need for changes to allow for more development and workforce housing within our rural communities. Measure 110 and the need to repeal as well as needed changes for unfunded mandates to our communities around the homeless. Behavioral and mental healthcare needs, changes to laws regarding assaulting healthcare workers and adjusting legislation to assist with staffing our rural hospitals. Childcare was another topic and the need to include children 2-5 years old in the school funding model for childcare. Schools were also discussed and the needs around aging buildings and their aging infrastructure and capital projects. We also discussed expanding regional partnerships in education with our community colleges and fast tracking CTE and workforce development education/training for our students. (I will discuss this incredible work being done in another newsletter) Transportation needs were also discussed as many are disconnected from public transit opportunities and are isolated from basic healthcare and other resources. 

Finally, and one of our biggest priorities, servicing our Veterans and the need to fulfill the promise made years ago with legislation championed by then, State Representative and now Douglas County Commissioner Tim Freeman, obtain the resources and begin construction of the third Oregon Veterans Home in Roseburg.



Senate President Wagner at the Roseburg Area Chamber 

After our Listening Session at Aviva, the Senate President, Representative Osborne and I joined Douglas County Commissioners Kress, Freeman and Boice at the Roseburg Area Chamber of Commerce Monthly Luncheon Meeting. We had the opportunity to listen to a presentation from Roseburg Police Chief Gary Klopfenstein and his staff regarding the negative impacts of Measure 110 to the Roseburg Community and speak with him in greater detail after the meeting concluded. 

As you know, I am working with my colleagues on the needed repeal of this horrible law that was sold to the public with good intentions that have never come to fruition, due in large part by the epic failure of implementation by the Oregon Health Authority. As I have told you before, we must give law enforcement their tools to protect lives and property, break the cycle of addiction and resources for treatment must be taken from OHA and given to the counties. County Commissioners would then have the ability to create measurable goals and expectations through MOU's and contracts with NGO's and other service providers that can be held accountable to the residents.  

I want to thank Chief Klopfenstein and his staff for a great presentation and all they do to protect our residents, given the unfortunate circumstance this law creates. I also want to thank Representative Goodwin for her incredible work on the newly formed Joint Interim Committee On Addiction and Community Safety Response. I was glad we were able to include this presentation and conversation in the Senate President's visit, so that he can hear directly from our rural law enforcement professionals about the failures of Measure 110. 





Bandon Senate President Listening Session at the Bandon Community Center

President Wagner, Representative Boice, Representative Wright and I then met in Bandon to listen to and discuss issues with community leaders from the other side of our District in Coos and Curry Counties. 

There were similar conversations for these communities as well. Measure 110 and its negative impacts to law enforcement, residents and their communities, along with the needed behavior and mental health services. Issues with land use and the need for development to grow our rural communities and invest in workforce housing. Needed infrastructure replacement and repairs for cities, schools and healthcare facilities. Staffing shortages for healthcare and childcare services. The need to restore recreational immunity for our counties and cities public places. (This is a serious issue and we will be addressing a fix in the upcoming legislative short session next year) 

Coos County Commissioner Main also discussed concerns of BOEM's proposed floating offshore wind, the negative impacts of the HCP on county forest trust lands, the proposed expansion of marshland and the lack of federal timber harvest receipts on O&C lands to fund county services to residents. He mentioned that Coos County was looking at over a $4 million dollar budget deficit in the upcoming year. 

We have 5 ports in our District as well and they discussed infrastructure issues from docks, pilings, the need for dredging due to the build up of aggregate in their boat basins and issues our fish processors have with new DEQ water quality regulations. My coastal caucus colleagues and I have been working with our processors and DEQ on these issues. We also were able to, under former Senator Kruse, invest in a state dredge to be used by our coastal ports to deal with their aggregate build up in their boat basins. We continue to work with them and the regulatory burden from federal and state agencies for permits to dredge as well as the associated expenses. 

We also heard from Coos-Curry Electric Co-Op CEO Bischoff regarding wildfire risks, power interruptions and smart grid applications, which are similar to Douglas Electric Co-Op. We discussed broadband access and our work to support broadband infrastructure with their Beacon Broadband and DECC's Douglas Fast Net. We also learned of their internship program with Southwestern Oregon Community College in Brookings for CTE training.

Finally, we heard from the Coquille Indian Tribe and their concerns regarding housing and healthcare. We learned of their investment in an opioid treatment facility. Tribal CEO Johnston also spoke about their partnership with the Coquille River STEP Association. I would like to thank Josh, Pam, Stacey, their Coquille River STEP Board, members and the Tribe for all of their incredible work. We have been working on this issue for years and their data and results will help us pass needed legislation that I have put forth since 2017. I will discuss this work in more detail in an upcoming newsletter.

I want to sincerely thank all of our community leaders that attended these community listening sessions for their time and fantastic input. I also want to thank Senate President Wagner for agreeing to come down and listen to our communities in Senate District 1. He was prepared, read up on our communities before his visit and was truly engaged in listening and the discussions that ensued. I sincerely appreciate him taking the time and his desire to learn about our pressing issues and needs here in southwest Oregon. This input and their discussions will assist in our work in not only the '24 Legislative Short Session, but as we move into the '25 Legislative Session. 




Oregon Aglink - Supporting Our Oregon Agriculture and Our Next Generation of Farmers and Ranchers

I want to thank Representative Scharf for her invitation to join her in Salem for the Annual Oregon Aglink Denim & Diamonds Benefit Event. Agriculture is a critically important industry in not only our Senate District 1, but across our state. Supporting our farmers and ranchers has been something I have worked on since long before coming to the legislature.

In 2014, I worked with our cranberry farmers when I was a County Commissioner. Now, nearly 100% of the cranberry farms are within our Senate District 1. Then, they were struggling for years because of their market, with imports from other countries driving down the price. Many were on the brink of losing their farms. I had been fully engaged on this issue since 2012 and drove to Oregon City in 2014 when then President Obama had a White House, Made in Rural America forum. (I know, “made in rural America forum” in Oregon City) I was able to speak to the Director of the United States Department of Agriculture and explain how we needed changes in the phytosanitary certification policy so that we could export cranberries to China. China wanted to buy our cranberries and our farmers wanted to sell them to China, as they were willing to pay our cranberry farmers more for their product. Within two months, USDA changed their phytosanitary policy for not only our Oregon farmers cranberries to be exported, but for our blueberries, strawberries and cherries. They made this change for not only Oregon, but for Washington and California as well. This was a huge success for our states agriculture producers of these products and has allowed our farmers increased revenues through export markets. 

Our beloved late Republican Secretary of State and my friend Dennis Richardson, was the driving force behind the creation of the Oregon China Council during his early years in the Oregon House of Representatives. He recognized the benefits to our agricultural producers in Oregon and I personally credit him and his work in this area for the current $8.4 billion dollars in exports to China for our Oregon farmers, ranchers and producers.

In 2016, while I was running for the Legislature and he was running for Secretary of State, he would speak to me about the Oregon-China Council and the need to do all we can to grow our exports and support our farmers, ranchers and producers. Once taking office in the Oregon Legislature in 2017, Democrat Representative Peter Buckley, who had been on the OCC had retired. I was asked by the OCC if I would like to take his place. Having a district like Secretary Richardson’s former House District so dependent on farming and ranching exports and with his counsel and encouragement, I accepted. This work is solely dedicated to growing opportunities for our Oregon farmers, ranchers and producers to export and sell their products overseas. I appreciate the opportunity to continue this important work for these industries in our District and across the state. This is a perfect example of the saying, "if you're not at the table, you're on the menu".





I ran into my high school friend Amanda Morgan and her boyfriend George Carroll.


Current and former legislators supporting Oregon Agriculture!

More to come on our push to fulfill the overwhelming majority of Oregonians' desire to repeal Measure 110 to save lives and give our law enforcement officers the tools they need to protect our residents and their communities, as well as Mercy's Festival of Trees Youth Fundraiser Event, Oregon Natural Resources & Industries Annual Meeting, work with the Oregon Wine Association (I am the Co-Chair of the Oregon Legislative Wine Caucus), the opportunity to speak with Roseburg High School Students about Measure 110 and more...

As always, thank you for the privilege and honor to work for you in the Oregon State Senate. Be safe and God Bless you, your family and your neighbor. 


Yours Truly, 

David Brock Smith

Senator David Brock Smith

Together, We Will Build a Better Oregon

Senator David Brock Smith

Senate District 1
Curry, Coos, and Douglas Counties
Southwest Oregon’s Fish, Farm, and Forestry District.
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1701
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE, S-316, Salem, Oregon 97301