House Speaker unveils 2006 agenda

After the election, the Governor used his first week attacking on his new opponent as an extremist. House Speaker Karen Minnis on the other hand used it to introduce her agenda for 2006. Minnis’ press release is re-printed below:

KAREN MINNIS PRESS RELEASE — In a letter sent to Governor Ted Kulongoski, Senate President Peter Courtney and Republican candidate for governor Ron Saxton, House Speaker Karen Minnis today outlined a legislative agenda for 2007 that would help restore public confidence in state government by focusing on issues that all Oregonians agree are critical to Oregon’s future. In the letter, Speaker Minnis also solicits their help and ideas in making an agenda for Oregon a reality next session.

“Regardless of who wins the election for governor in the fall, the issues we will face in January 2007 will be the same: education, tax policy, health care and public safety,” Speaker Minnis said in her letter. “I’d like to build on the success of the recent special session and work on an agenda for the next year that I believe, can earn the support of legislators and Oregonians of both parties.”

Speaker Minnis’ agenda for the 2007 Legislative Session includes the following:


– Refine and enact the Stable Schools Plan or another means to ensure K-12 public schools receive predictable funding within the taxes Oregonians already pay

Tax reform

– Establish and fund a rainy day fund
– Examine — in consultation with Oregon’s business community — the feasibility of redirecting the corporate kicker
– Provide an incentive to invest in Oregon’s economy by reducing the capital gains tax

Protecting our children

– Reform the state’s child welfare system to provide better care for children placed in the state’s care
– Improve programs that assist child victims of sexual abuse and domestic violence
– Expand health care options for Oregon children

Public safety

– Expand the number of Oregon State Police officers to ensure 24 hour coverage on Oregon’s highways
– Toughen penalties for crimes committed against children or by members of criminal gangs

“I believe these are achievable and sound policy goals that would improve the economic health of our state and improve the lives of the citizens who have elected us to represent them,” Speaker Minnis said. “We have proved in past regular sessions, and most dramatically in last month’s special session, that we can accomplish great things working together. I challenge us all to remember our past bi-partisan successes and work now to make sure the next session of the Legislature builds on them.”