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2023 Legislative Roundup

An unprecedented session with the longest walkout in Oregon history, the 2023 legislative session started out big, stalled out for six weeks, and then ended with a flurry of bills passing, often in thematic packages, as work whittled down to the last hours before Sine Die. 1000 Friends still helped pass many good bills, especially in the housing realm, plus we stopped a big last-minute attempt to undermine our UGB system.

Opinion: Funding for I-5 bridge replacement must move forward

Oregon has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to leverage federal infrastructure funding to envision and deliver an I-5 bridge replacement project that reflects the community’s priorities ­–but that opportunity is in jeopardy. Any chance for funding this session now relies on its inclusion in a broader budget bill. But with the walkout of some senators, this path is uncertain at best.

Help us encourage the legislature to increase the resiliency of Oregon’s farms, ranches, and forestlands

With the gridlock in Salem caused by the walkout of some senators, we risk losing broadly supported, incentive-based bills that use limited federal funding to help Oregon’s farmers, ranchers, and forestland managers be more resilient to drought and climate change. Together, this group of bills would establish voluntary programs for willing managers of working lands in Oregon.

Another LULI cohort graduates

Our state now has more than two dozen new land use leaders who will take the tenets of a strong, protective land use program and apply them in their diverse fields of work. These Oregonians join a network of LULIs across the state who better understand how the land use planning program impacts issues they care about.

LEGAL WIN | Court of Appeals rules against loophole allowing hotels on farmland

1000 Friends, in partnership with Friends of Yamhill County, recently won a case that prevents misuse of the home occupation statute to build hotels on Yamhill County farmland. The ruling, at the Oregon Court of Appeals, is important to safeguarding our farmland across the state, where our land use system consistently protects our farms from being picked apart, and their land diverted for unintended, non-farm activities.

Mid-Session legislative recap

Now that we’re midway through the 2023 legislative session, we have dozens of bills to review that relate to housing, natural and working lands, transportation, climate, wildfires, threats to urban growth boundaries, semiconductors, budgets, and rulemaking. This is an update to our original 2023 legislative overview.

Farms, forests and watersheds, or factories? Oregon can have them all

Our state is poised for success, with at least eight semiconductor applications already in motion — on land already designated for industrial use — to bring federal funding and more high quality jobs to our state. However, SB 4 includes a potential trap that Oregon must be vigilant in avoiding if we are to declare success: unprecedented authority given to the governor regarding land.

Housing Update: HB 2001 passes, plus other housing bills on the move

Midway through 2023’s legislative session, we’re bringing you a short housing roundup, including a win we’re celebrating and the other housing bills we’re still supporting. The seven housing bills we are still working on in the legislature are all aimed at making it easier to build more affordable and diverse housing that’s located close to the things people need to get to, such as schools, stores, parks, and more.