Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Legislative Update, Week 10.5 - First Winnowing

The deadline for bills to have a work session was last week, and so we have our first round of bills that "died in committee." None of them seem critical, and some of them represent topics covered by other bills that remain alive or bills that seem likely to be subject to gutting and stuffing.

Undated early view of 1876 Oregon Capitol
(before Portico addition of 1888)
via State Capitol 75th Anniversary site
But first, just having gone through an orderly transition at our State Capitol, it seems like we should join everybody else in observing today what was surely the Country's most disorderly and tragic transition 150 years ago.

Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, April 22nd, 1865
Jacksonville Mourning
There aren't many local papers digitized from this period, so Jacksonville is the closest we can come, I think. The Oregon Sentinel started out with southern sympathies, but early in the war it was sold and became a Republican paper fully in support of the Union.

Locally in Jacksonville,
business houses were closed and the doors draped in mourning irrespective of party. All countenances appeared sad, dejected and mournful, except a few secession traitors. One drunken secessionist gave vent to the feelings of a wicked and depraved heart by expressing joy at our great national calamity. A good Union man who heard him knocked him off the sidewalk.
The Bills

The Chaff - Bills that died in committee, which we will no longer follow here:
  • SB 177 Bike licensing and repeal of Bike Bill
  • SB 551 Bike licensing and repeal of Bike Bill
  • SB 861 making it possible to use a bike beacon, like an RFID tag, as probable cause for a search warrant in recovering stolen bikes
  • HB 2256 Cleans up language about PIP in auto insurance (still not sure if it's a policy change or just housekeeping on language)
  • HB 2553 Creates task force on expanding WES (commuter rail) to Salem 
  • HB 3153 Prohibits State from funding municipal sidewalks 
  • HB 3302 on seismic retrofits for bridges  
  • SB 511 creates a study on DUI and recidivism (many DUI cases are repeat offenders)
  • HB 3176: Imposes fee on fossil fuel or fossil fuel-generated electricity to be paid by vendors (three carbon pricing bills remain active)
  • HB 2159: Imposes tax on each fuel supplier and utility based on amount of carbon in carbon-based fuel that is sold by fuel supplier to consumers in state or that is used to produce carbon-generated electricity supplied by utility to consumers in state.​
  • HB 2086: Imposes fee on fossil fuel or fossil fuel-generated electricity to be paid by vendors. 
  • HB 2082: Imposes tax on each fuel supplier and utility based on amount of carbon in carbon-based fuel that is sold by fuel supplier to consumers in state or that is used to produce carbon-generated electricity supplied by utility to consumers in state.​
  • HJR 10: Imposes taxes on carbon emissions for purpose of funding reductions in carbon emissions and carbon fuel use.
  • HB 2740 on ConnectOregon (two other bills remain active)
Other bills appear to remain alive.

New milestones and movements are highlighted in green. (As usual, see more relevant bills or movement? Drop a note in the comments.)

Specific bike things:
  • SB 533 making it legal for two-wheelers to go on red when you've waited one complete cycle and the light or controller is broken. 
  • HB 3255 Originally requiring additional reflective clothing at night, but now with two sets of proposed amendments for a rear light instead of just a reflector at night.
Other Bike-relevant and transportation bills:
  • A pod of bills about speed bumps: HB 2283, HB 2293, HB 2730, HB 2736 (these speed bump bills remain nulls, ready for gut-n-stuff action; see below for two that are getting stuffed; work sessions are scheduled for these, but I don't see proposed amendments)
  • HB 2552 fees for studded tires (public hearing held, but no work session - maybe dead)
  • HB 2620 would require ODOT to inventory ODOT land and determine if it is really needed transportation (public hearing held, but no work session - maybe dead)
  • HB 2621 for expanded photo speed enforcement pilot project in Portland (work session scheduled for today)
  • HB 2819 to require drivers over the age of 75 to take annual license exams (public hearing held, but no work session - maybe dead)
  • HB 2281, HB 2282 (these speed bump bills look poised for "gut and stuff" action with proposed amendments, 2281 on road usage charges, 2282 on electronic signatures)
  • HB 2274 Changes name of "Connect Oregon Fund"; also HB 2275
  • HB 5040 ODOT Biennial Budget (Lots of hearings)
  • SJR 16 broadens the list of projects eligible for the gas tax, "for infrastructure that reduces traffic burden of, or pollution from, motor vehicles on public roads."
A few land use things of note (all of these have had hearings and look too be live bills and active, at least for the moment):
  • SB 565 - Tax credit for rehab of historic properties
  • HB 2564 on inclusionary zoning (amended and passed the House yesterday; on to the Senate) BikePortland has more on it.
  • HB 2633 on improving planning for disasters
  • SB 5502 concerning North State Hospital Campus  (Lots of hearings)
  • SB 120 as introduced expanded the definition of ways to meet "mobility standards" and included "reducing congestion in other modes of travel" - which seems ambiguous, but could as the language was adjusted have meant something like "reduce auto congestion by means of improvements in bike lanes and transit (etc)." The relevant language has been deleted in the first round of amendments, and now it looks like it maintains the usual "highway mobility targets established for a highway corridor by the Department of Transportation’s Oregon Highway Plan" and calls for a new study on the possibility of change. The bill passed the Senate and is onto the House.
Carbon taxes looked like they were going nowhere, but three of them were scheduled and kept alive. All three had hearings and "possible work sessions" yesterday.
  • HB 3250: Requires Environmental Quality Commission to adopt carbon cap-and-dividend program.
  • HB 3252: Imposes tax on each fuel supplier and utility based on amount of carbon in carbon-based fuel that is sold by fuel supplier to consumers in this state or that is used to produce carbon-generated electricity supplied by utility to consumers in this state.
  • HB 3470: Requires Environmental Quality Commission to adopt by rule statewide greenhouse gas emissions limits for years 2020 and 2050 and to adopt interim statewide greenhouse gas emissions limits consistent with 2050 limit every five years.​
Update, Saturday

We'll see. It seems like a political convenience to utter "climate change" and "congestion" quite like this:
Climate change: Brown already has declared drought emergencies in five Oregon counties and more declarations are expected.

Her budget includes $56 million for a statewide water resources program.

"We cannot talk about prosperity and economic recovery without acknowledging the crucial role water plays in our quality of life and our livelihoods," she said. "Addressing the possibility of water shortages has been front and center since Day One."

Transportation: Congestion is making it difficult for workers to commute and for companies to get their products to market, Brown said.

"Looking ahead, however, the resources needed to operate, preserve and make much-needed improvements are non-existent," she said. "These issues are real, and they are statewide."
I would have liked to transportation more clearly in the context of "fix it first," the threat of big earthquake, and the need to transform mobility in the light of climate change and greenhouse gases.

Update, Sunday

Too much on "congestion" and not enough on "fix it first."

Sunday editorial

For all notes on the 2015 session, see here.


Laurie Dougherty said...

Of the carbon tax or cap bills HB3470 is scheduled for a Work Session on April 21 at 3 pm (House Energy & Environment Committee). This bill was modeled after California AB32. It will put Oregon's carbon reduction plan into law and require the Environmental Quality Commission to develop a plan to make this happen by examining a variety of measures including cap and trade with the possibility of joining the California-Quebec cap and trade market (soon to include Ontario also). In the absence of consistent federal policy states are taking the lead in measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

As described in testimony at the April 14 hearing, California has been able to use revenue from permit auctions to invest in programs to improve energy efficiency and expand renewable energy. RGGI, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative in several states of the US Northeast has also effectively returned revenues to communities to improve energy outcomes.

HB3470 also requires measures to mitigate hardship for low income people during the transition to a renewable energy economy.

Anonymous said...

HB 3255 - formerly for reflective clothing, now instead adding a requirement for a rear light for nighttime bike riding, passed the House 44-14.

Salem Breakfast on Bikes said...

Thanks for the updates!

Also inserted notes on State of State address.

Salem Breakfast on Bikes said...

Here's some good news in an update from Cherriots:

From the Subcommittee Minutes for the board meeting on the 23rd:

"The Department of Administrative Services (DAS) has proposed the reinstatement of the Capitol Mall Bus Pass Program in their proposed budget request. Mr. Pollock testified twice in the legislative session about the reinstatement. Cost to the state is estimated at $500,000 annually. A decision will be made at the end of the legislative session."