Bad bill to repeal Climate Friendly & Equitable Communities languishes in House committee

Last July, the Land Conservation and Development Commission adopted a set of rules called Climate Friendly & Equitable Communities (CFEC) – a program designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transportation, while creating more equitable communities by planning for diverse and affordable housing and transportation choices. This program applies to cities and counties in Oregon’s eight major urban areas.

Oregon needs to meaningfully and quickly reduce climate pollution and create more livable, equitable communities. When the program launched, we saw its requirements as a mix of attempts that were very good, pretty good, and not good enough, and so we have been working for purposeful implementation, with the intent to achieve real climate progress.

The last thing we wanted to see was an attempt to effectively repeal the program, but that’s exactly what a bill introduced in this legislative session would do. Since the introduction of House Bill 2659 earlier this session, 1000 Friends has been working in coalition with other groups to stop this bad bill. 

Cherry blossoms flourish in front of the Oregon State Capitol

This week’s hearing on HB 2659 was canceled at the last minute, and the bill was moved without recommendation to the House Committee on Rules. If there is any hearing, it will be there in the next few months, but we take this as a sign of lack of enthusiasm for the bill.

1000 Friends Deputy Director Mary Kyle McCurdy – a member of the CFEC Rulemaking and Advisory Committee – was crucial to this effort, testifying on our behalf and supporting an effective group of 30 statewide organizations and 500 active Oregonians to speak against HB 2659.

1000 Friends and our coalition partners are now able to focus on the more productive paths: First, getting funds for cities to implement the CFEC program, and second, collaborating on CFEC revisions to help make its implementation easier on the cities it applies to: the Portland metro area, Salem/Keizer, Eugene/Springfield, Corvallis, Albany, Medford, Grants Pass, and Bend.

Until this bill officially dies in committee, we’ll be keeping an eye on it. Sign up for our newsletters to stay informed on the latest developments.