Growing up in southern Oregon during the collapse of the timber economy, I know the hardship families can experience when jobs disappear. Even today, working people in too many Oregon communities struggle to make ends meet.
By many measures—poverty, divorce, teen births, college attainment, reliance on disability payments, and male labor-force participation—rural communities are our country’s most economically distressed places. (“Rural America is the New ‘Inner City,'” Wall Street Journal, May 26, 2017.) We need to create more good jobs for Oregonians all around our state.
The research winery at Oregon State University. OSU’s Fermentation Science program is helping to create more opportunity and prosperity in Oregon’s food and beverage industries.
In my role as chair of the House Committee on Economic Development and Trade and as co-chair of the Joint Committee on Marijuana Regulation, I’ve worked to help Oregon manufacturers and agricultural producers expand their businesses so they can employ more people. Here are some of the bills I have supported this session:
Streamlining requirements applicable to our craft beer, wine, spirits, and hard cider sectors
- HB 2089: Provides greater flexibility in the products distilleries may sell in their tasting rooms.
- HB 2150: Creates a system so alcohol producers can file and pay their taxes electronically to streamline the process.
- HB 2159: Right-sizes some requirements applicable to Oregon cider makers.
- HB 2160: Eases the ability of brew pubs to sell products from satellite locations.
- HB 2746: Helps businesses manage the transition in bottle redemption rates.
- SB 677: Allows cideries to be sited on farm land in same manner as wineries.
- SB 1044: Streamlines regulations relating to alcohol licensing, sales, and financing.
Creating a strong legal framework for Oregon’s legal hemp and cannabis sectors.
- SB 1015: Facilitates growth of Oregon’s hemp sector by improving the legal framework that regulates it.
- SB 1057: Ensures that all legal cannabis businesses use product tracking procedures to eliminate unfair competition from the illegal market.
- HB 2198: Enables medical businesses to sell product to OLCC-licensed stores and clarifies rules for managing product.
Expanding opportunity around our state through other strategic initiatives.
- HB 2091: Supports expansion of broadband access in rural areas.
- HB 2752: Expands opportunity for manufacturers of cross-laminated timber products.
- HB 3350: Supports growth of Oregon’s active tourism and outdoor recreation economy.
- HB 2012: Creates an Eastern Oregon Border Development Region to address economic needs in the Eastern portion of our state.
We will keep working on these bills to move each of them through the process. We are also supporting investment in Oregon’s transportation system and schools – these are also key drivers of community strength.
Hiking with David and Julia near Cascade Locks.