With few bills left, interest groups narrow their focus
Monday, June 17, 2019
As committees’ agendas dwindle with the fast-approaching end of session, interest groups focus their attention.
The cap-and-trade bill will be under intense scrutiny as it heads to the House floor for a scheduled vote Monday, June 17.
Although House Bill 2020 seemed ready to move out of committee earlier in the month, the bill kept getting rescheduled. Last week, a hearing before the Joint Ways and Means Natural Resources Subcommittee drew crowds that filled three hearing rooms and spilled into the hallway.
In a flurry of activity Tuesday, June 11, new bill amendments were introduced and adopted, adding aerospace products to the emission-intensive industries list and offset protocols related to forestry. The full Ways and Means Committee passed the bill Wednesday, June 12.
The Joint Ways and Means Education subcommittee heard HB 2024, which directs the Early Learning Division to establish a program to improve access to high-quality infant and toddler care for families who are at or below 200% of the federal poverty line. The bill would direct the Oregon Department of Education to continue a pilot program funded by the federal government. Despite some pushback from members on the program's cost and the seemingly small number of families it serves, the bill passed to Ways and Means.
HB 2025 would establish the Preschool Promise Program within the ODE Early Learning Division. The bill would expand eligibility requirements and establish a grant and scholarship program among other things. Although some objections were raised, the bill moved out of subcommittee to the full Ways and Means.