03/24/2017 Legislative Update March 27
“With any tooth and nail that I have.”Governor Kate Brown vows to fight any legislation similar to Indiana’s “Religious Freedom Restoration Act”, which critics say discriminates against the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
SB 409, which repeals the $500,000 limit on noneconomic damages recoverable in wrongful death and other courses of action, is scheduled for a public hearing and possible work session on Tuesday, April 7 in the Senate Judiciary Committee. The OMA is leading the opposition to this bill.
News of the week:
Portland Mayor Charlie Hales and Washington Governor Jay Inslee both issued travel bans on government travel to Indiana. Governor Brown issued a written statement. http://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/politics/2015/03/31/gov-brown-speaks-indiana-law/70740492/
The big bills this week: K-12 Budget and Background Checks on Guns
The House passed the $7.255 billion K-12 budget which funds full-day kindergarten. The latest budget includes an additional $600 million but House Republicans say the number is too low. The bill now heads to the Senate for consideration. This is the first of the big agency budgets to advance.
Hearings for SB 941, the bill requiring background checks on guns, were held on April 1. Approximately 200 people showed up to testify.
Friday April 10 – Deadline for Chairs to SCHEDULE Work Sessions for First Chamber Measures Policy committee Chairs must post agendas with first chamber measures (House bills in the House, Senate bills in the Senate) that they intend to hold a work session on by the April 21 deadline. This will not apply to Ways & Means, Revenue, Rules, and other joint committees
OCEP bill hearings and other activities
SB 871, a bill which among other things, would require emergency rooms to have protocols for the treatment of adrenal insufficiency is up for a hearing on April 1. Katy King testified on behalf of OCEP. Joining the opposition: the Oregon Chapter of the National Association of EMS Physicians, the Fire Chief’s Association, the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems. Chair Laurie Monnes Anderson asked OCEP and the Hospital Association to develop amendments and to convene stakeholders.
SB 186 Epi-Pens, is up for a work session on Wednesday, April 8. This bill would allow for public dispensing machines for a prescription medicine.
HB 3502, the mental health care improvement bill developed by the OAHHS workgroup, which included OCEP, is up for a hearing in the House Health Care Committee on Friday, April 10.
HB 3349 Requires hospitals and EDs to maintain written charity care policies.This bill is up for a hearing on April 10 in House Health Care.
HB 3378 Requires hospitals to adopt written discharge polices.This bill is up for a hearing on April 6 in House Health Care.
Thing to Know: Budgets
The House has passed the K-12 budget and the Senate is likely to do so next week. Does this mean the budget process is over for school funding? Not necessarily. Lawmakers will look to the May Forecast to find out if additional funds will be available for education, mental health and other to priorities.
For more information about the legislative process, please contact Katy King.