The End Has Arrived
The headlines cannot be missed, and if there is one thing to know, either one side won, or nobody won. It all depends on who you ask. Either way, the weeklong sprint to the finish of the Legislative Session has arrived as Republican members of the legislature returned to the Capitol this week.
All the details of the deal have not been made public, but significant amendments were made to HB 2002 and HB 2005, the abortion/gender-affirming care and gun control legislation that were the crux of the walkout. Both bills passed the Senate yesterday and will now go back to the House for concurrence.
Now, the Senate will shift its focus to passing budget bills and bipartisan bills in the Senate Floor backlog. It will be a tight timeline for the Senate to finish its work with just over a week until constitutional Sine Die, but it has allowed plenty of time to fulfill the legislature’s only constitutional requirement: pass a balanced budget.
It’s also worth noting the deal made in the Senate does not include Republicans’ request for their unexcused absences to be reconsidered and lowered below the threshold set by Measure 113. All fines for those who participated in the walkout have been cleared, but as of now, all but three Senate Republicans are barred from running for re-election. Senate Republicans have retained legal counsel and plan to challenge Measure 113 in court.
Uncertainty for State agencies, the state school fund, and special sessions throughout the summer are largely put to rest now. The Salem Chamber will continue to be engaged for the duration of this session.
Content contributed by Bravio Communications, Salem Chamber staff, and OSCC.