Senator Alan Olsen (R -Canby) called for a vote on SB 596 Wednesday, a bill which would bring greater transparency to the legislative process. The bill would require proposed amendments to legislation to have a name attached to them, rather than be anonymous.
The attempt to vote on the bill failed on party lines. “ Oregonians want transparency in government, ” said Olsen. “ They deserve to have a clear glimpse of what is happening and who is behind certain proposals. The legislature’s committee amendment process is not transparent. Someone should be able to pick up an amendment and know exactly who asked for it. This was a simple, practical bill that would have gone a long way to providing the public with a better picture of what is happening in the legislature. SB 596 is sponsored by sixty five members of the legislature, accounting for two thirds of the entire Oregon Legislative Assembly. Ten of the bill’s Democrat sponsors voted NO on the Senate floor in an embarrassing show of partisanship. Maintaining the status quo will enable the majority party to utilize confusion and dishonesty as tactics during legislative negotiations.
Senator Olsen is disappointed that the Senate was unable to set aside their party differences, and support a bill that would help bring greater transparency to the legislative process. Olsen and his wife Juanita make their home in Canby. Olsen is a veteran of the United States Army, serving from 1969 to 1971. He is a general contractor and small business owner building homes and structures across Oregon. Senate District 20 includes Canby, Oregon City, Damascus, Estacada and rural parts of Clackamas County.