By Anna Mae Kersey
Oregon House Bill 2300 gives terminally ill patients access to potentially life-saving drugs or investigational products not yet approved by the FDA that they might otherwise die waiting for.
While the necessity of such a bill is largely uncontroversial, and since last year more than 20 states have passed similar legislation, restrictions are included in Oregon’s law that severely limit the types of terminally ill patients who would be eligible for this kind of treatment. Continue reading
by Dan Lucas
On July 2 Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian upheld an earlier finding that said the owners of the Sweetcakes by Melissa bakery in Gresham had to pay $135,000 in damages to a lesbian couple for refusing to make them a wedding cake. The damages were for “emotional and mental suffering resulting from the cake denial.”
The case started in January 2013, before a federal judge had overturned Oregon’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Continue reading
The 2015 Regular Session of the 78th Oregon Legislative Assembly adjourned Sine Die Monday, July 6, 2015.
Oregon Senate Republicans: Sine Die – Partisan 2015 Legislative Session Draws to a Close
Salem, OR – Following adjournment of the 78th legislative assembly, Senate Republicans decried the highly partisan session that resulted in dozens of costly new mandates on Oregon families and small businesses.
“Before the session began, Democrat leaders made it clear they would take an “our way or the highway” approach to passing a slew of expensive new laws benefitting special interests,” explained Senator Chuck Thomsen (R-Hood River). “First off the block was the Clean Fuels mandate that will raise the price of gas for Oregonians by 19 to 30 cents or more. They chose their pet environmental project over a transportation package that would have given us tangible improvements to our roads and bridges. Oregonians lost big time this session.” Continue reading
by NW Spotlight
Tragedy on San Francisco’s Pier 14
On Wednesday, July 1st, 32-year-old Kate Steinle was shot and killed on San Francisco’s Pier 14, “one of the city’s most scenic tourist spots.” The ABC affiliate in San Francisco reported San Francisco police said she “was walking along Pier 14 when a man came up and shot her in the upper torso.”
The ABC affiliate reported “Wednesday was supposed to be fun for Kate and her family. She met her father on Pier 14 that night. He was there to take her to Pleasanton, to learn if her brother and his wife were expecting a boy or girl. But tragedy struck instead.” The San Jose Mercury News reported “A bullet pierced Steinle’s aorta and she collapsed to the ground in front of her father, who desperately tried to save her life.” Continue reading
by Reagan Knopp
This week, the Oregon Legislature adjourned Sine Die. Many were surprised that the kicker did not receive any significant changes. Many strongly believe the kicker law — which returns excess revenue collect by the state to taxpayers — is outdated and needs to be fixed in order for it work better for middle class Oregonians. They’re right.
The personal income tax kicker has not seen significant revision since 2011. That session, the legislature changed the kicker into a credit that filers must claim on their taxes. Previously, income tax filers directly received a check from the State of Oregon. Continue reading
Right From the Start
Two years ago, in the aftermath of Harris v. Quinn, I wrote the following column. Last week the United States Supreme Court agreed to hear Friedrichs v. CTA which will deal precisely with the issue discussed in my column. There will be a lot of legalese and make believe bandied about by the lawyers and the politicians. It is timely to reiterate in laymen’s language what the issue is really about and why “free speech” must remain free.
Free Speech vs. Collective Bargaining (Non-legalese)
Last week’s column dealt with the United States Supreme Court’s recent decision in Harris v. Quinn. This is the case in which the court ruled that the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) could not require individuals who received public funds for providing home health care services to relatives to join or pay dues to the public employees unions. Since that column a number of people have raised the question with me as why there isn’t a balance between the concerns of unions that non-members should not get a free ride for the union’s bargaining efforts and individuals “free speech” and “rights of association (non-association).” Continue reading
Oregon Senate Republicans
Salem, OR – Monday, Senate Republicans released a “Reverse Christmas Tree” package of wasteful spending bills passed or by the Democrat-controlled legislature this session. The $203 million in expensive, unnecessary projects and policies should be sent immediately instead to the State School Fund, they argued.
“Democrat leaders have spent the past five months pushing expensive, partisan programs through the legislature that cost Oregonians real money,” said Senator Chuck Thomsen (R-Hood River). “Now they want to create a Task Force to figure out how to reduce class sizes? The answer is simple: more funding and more teachers. We don’t need a task force; we need to fully fund education now.” Continue reading