Priority Issues

 

Cultural Competency HB 2864

The association has been focusing much of its legislative capacity towards cultural competency in the last couple weeks. We have been working with the Universities and community colleges on agreeing on a cost for the components of the bill and closing out policy negotiations. At this point universities have agreed to to report a minimal fiscal impact for this biennium if change the effective date of the bill to the end of 2019. After we get the amendment back HB 2864 will be scheduled for a work session. We should expect to see it scheduled within the next week.

 

End Profiling HB 2355

HB 2355 passed out of House Judiciary 8-2-1 with a few amendments. These amendments came forth after the speaker’s office and law enforcement negotiations completed. The coalition accepted these amendments in an effort to keep law enforcement on the table and keep the drug portion intact. At this point we will start to shift our efforts to Ways and Means so that it gets fully funded. The amendments include:

All residue cases are misdemeanors and will not count towards your number of charges to a felony.

3 strikes you’re out- after someone receives 2 drug misdemeanors charges, they will receive a felony charge on their 3rd conviction.

Lowering the amount of time someone can receive jail time for a drug misdemeanor.

Data collection on drug charges in Oregon.

 

Survivor Amnesty SB 762

We have finalized the amendments for SB 762 and we are looking to have a work session scheduled the second week of April. The amendment expands the protection to bystanders who are calling for medical assistance.

 

Ethnic Studies HB 2845

HB 2845 is scheduled for a work session April 10th. Since the hearing we have worked with Representative Parrish on an amendment to include someone who is an expert of Middle Eastern or Jewish studies.

 

Mental Health Taskforce SB 231

SB 231 is scheduled for a hearing and possible work session April 3rd where it is expected to be voted out and sent to Ways and means. There, we will have to opportunity to adjust the bill if necessary to ensure the bill is costing Oregon a substantial amount of money.

 

Gender and Name Change Documentation HB 2673

Now that HB 2673 is on the Senate side, we are waiting for the Senate to finish considering all of the Senate bills, which they are expected to wrap up by April 18th. After that the Senate will start to hear house bills.We have joined Basic Rights Oregon in efforts to provide organizing capacity to the bill when needed. BRO Lobbyist will be joining us for our O-Board lobby day to go over the bill and messaging.

 

Other Policy highlights

 

Stable Homes

Voted out of committee 5-4 on a party line vote with . Scheduled for a floor vote on in the house chamber April 4th.

 

Veterans Resource centers

Work Session Scheduled April 4th.

 

Student Fee Autonomy for community colleges

Work Session Scheduled April 6th.

 

Reproductive Health Equity

Seeking a work session date.

 

Undocumented survivor Protections

Public Hearing and Work Session scheduled April 4th.

 

Open Educational Resources

Referred to Ways and Means March 31st

 

Budget Priorities

 

Ways and Means Subcommittee on Education

Currently, the Ways and Means subcommittee on education is currently going through an educational series on Higher Education Budgets.They have also scheduled a set of public hearings where they hope to hear from students. The dates are as follows:

April 4th Public Hearing for Financial Aid

April 10th Public Hearing for Community Colleges

April 17th Public Hearing for Universities

 

Higher Education Coordinating Commission tuition setting meeting

As Universities begin to set their tuition increases, the HECC has planned on hearing all of the universities tuition increases on May 11th. This is an opportunity for students to testify about our budget asks and tuition affordability. Please note that this tuition setting meeting is only for universities that are planning to raise their tuition above 5%.

 

Higher Education Lobby day

We have been asked by the Higher Education coalition to participate in a lobby day May 16th. This is the same day that the May revenue forecast is being released, so we are hoping to talk to legislators about our budget asks and the need for more revenue.

 

May 16th Revenue forecast

The May revenue forecast is what the Co Chairs of Ways and Means base the bulk of their budget on. A week or two after the May revenue forecast is released, the Co-Chairs will release their preliminary budget, which will be a key point in time for students to see what dollars may be coming into Higher Education.

 

Legislator Townhalls

Students have started to attend local townhalls to talk about our Budget asks and the need for more revenue. Students may be asked to attend one in your district in the next couple of months.

 

 

Upcoming Key Dates

  • April 3rd Public Hearing and Possible work Session for SB 231 (Mental Health Taskforce)
  • April 4th Public Hearing for Financial Aid
  • April 10th Public Hearing for Community Colleges
  • April 10th Work Session for Ethnic Studies
  • April 17th Public Hearing for Universities
  • May 11th HECC Tuition Setting meeting
  • May 16th May Revenue Forecast
  • May 16th Higher Education Lobby Day

 

 

The HECC is still looking for a student to sit on this committee. Please email  [email protected] if you are interested.