The Oregon Student Association had a successful short session passing 10 of 12 priority issues.
Senate Bill 1563 – Tuition Equity 3.0
Removes requirement that students who are not citizens or lawful permanent residents apply for official federal identification document to be eligible for exemption from paying nonresident tuition at public universities.
Senate Bill 1557 – Military Student Support Reform
Requires community colleges, public universities and Oregon Health and Science University to provide certain rights to students ordered to federal or state active duty for 30 or fewer consecutive days.
House Bill 4141 – Student Voice and Transparency Act
Requires each public university to establish advisory body to advise university president on recommendations to governing board regarding resident tuition and mandatory enrollment fees.
Creates tax credit for contributions to Opportunity Grant Fund.
House Bill 4043 – Community College Financial Aid Advising
Requires community colleges to jointly conduct study to determine best methods for helping community college students learn about and apply for benefits.
House Bill 4150 – K12 Sexual Harassment Reform
Requires specified information to be shared with student, staff member or certain person following conclusion of investigation related to sexual harassment.
House Bill 4053 – K12 Accelerated Credit Transfer
Requires Chief Education Office to prepare annual report on accelerated college credit programs.
Senate Bill 5702 – Capital Investments
Increases amounts authorized for issuance of revenue bonds for biennium.
Prohibits public bodies from contracting with broadband Internet access service providers that engage in certain network management activities based on paid prioritization, content blocking or other discrimination.
House Bill 4028 – Student Parent Childcare Tax Credit
Limits expenses for which dependent care income tax credit may be claimed to combination of earned income taxable by Oregon and imputed income, using lesser amount attributable to either spouse on joint return.
$32M Community College Funding
Obtaining $32 million for community colleges to mitigate tuition increases and expand advising services.
This was one of the hardest tasks on our agenda. Although the Oregon Community College Association was taking lead on this funding request, our organization played a huge role on moving this issue forward. The coalition requested a meeting on the Joint Ways and Means Subcommittee on Education for Tuesday, February 27th. Nearly all members of the subcommittee were on board, including the co-chairs, and we were able to get the House Higher Education leaders to sign a letter of support. However, when requesting funds without a bill aligned, the subcommittee must get the approval of all four co-chairs (subcommittee and full committee).
This made the task difficult for us to advance. We were able to secure 3 out of 4 co-chairs. President Courtney was the missing link. A day before our planned meeting, we were informed that the President decided to not have the meeting on the 27th. This essentially eliminated the possibility of a funding ask. Legislators in support suggested using whatever political capital they had left to get a smaller amount, but the coalition decided to save that political capital for the long session and make Community College Funding the primary goal for higher education funding allocation.
Permits county, city or district to choose to permit electors to return ballot by business reply mail, with county, city or district paying cost for ballot return.
The bill was ineffective after the Sine Die. We expect this bill to be a big push during the long session.