August 17, 2017

When Does a Bill Actually Become Law? Effective Dates of 2017 Legislation

The 2017 session continued the trend seen in recent sessions of a number of policy bills taking effect before the default date. In Oregon, all bills passed by the legislature take effect on January 1 of the following year. There are two exceptions to this rule: (1) when the legislature specifies a special effective date or (2) when the bill includes a clause declaring an emergency, which allows the legislation to go into effect immediately upon signature by the Governor.

Of the 698 bills enacted in Oregon this year, 356—or 51 percent—will go into effect before January 1. This number is inflated by many budget and tax bills, which generally need to go into effect at a specific time to keep state programs functioning. However, even among “policy bills,” many will take effect before January 1, 2018. For example, about 31 percent of criminal law legislation, 43 percent of labor-and-employment-related bills, and over half of health law and administrative law bills will go into effect at some point during 2017.

A significant percentage of bills will take effect on October 6, 2017 as many bills go into effect 90 days after the legislature adjourns. The Oregon State Bar and the Professional Liability Fund will be working throughout the fall to make information available on new legislation, including through the Bar’s Oregon Legislation Highlights.

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Legislator and Board of Governors Member Appointed by Governor to Judgeships

On July 11, Governor Brown announced her appointments for a number of judicial seats throughout Oregon. These included vacant seats in Clackamas and Multnomah county circuit courts, as well as the Oregon Court of Appeals.

Clackamas County Circuit Court

      • Ann Lininger
      • Ulanda L. Watkins

Multnomah County Circuit Court

      • Christopher A. Ramras
      • Benjamin N. Souede
      • Katharine von Ter Stegge

Oregon Court of Appeals

      • Robyn E. Ridler Aoyagi
      • Bronson James
      • Steven R. Powers

Included in the list of new judges is the state representative representing Lake Oswego and Southwest Portland, Ann Lininger (District 38), and current BOG member Katharine von Ter Stegge.

Representative Lininger, who took over when Christopher Garrett, now a judge on the Oregon Court of Appeals, stepped down in 2014, recently stepped down. Before ascending to the bench, Representative Lininger was a Clackamas County commissioner, a business lawyer, and a public defender.

Four candidates have been chosen by democratic precinct committee persons for the District 38 seat: Joe Buck, Theresa Kohlhoff (BOG Member 2012–2016), Andrea Salinas, and Neil Simon. District 38 includes parts of both Clackamas and Multnomah counties. Now that Representative Lininger has relinquished her seat, Clackamas and Multnomah county commissioners will determine who will serve the remainder of the term.

Katharine von Ter Stegge joined the Board of Governors in 2016 as a representative of Region 5 after serving on a number of Bar committees, including the House of Delegates and the Unlawful Practice of Law Committee. The Bar is currently seeking candidates to complete her term on the Board of Governors representing Region 5. Candidate statements of interest are due by September 26. The representative will serve from October 24, 2017, through December 31, 2019. For more information on the position, visit the Bar’s website at

Congratulations to the newest members of Oregon’s bench!

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Oregon State Bar Interim Projects List

At the end of every legislative session, there are bills and concepts that don’t quite make it through the legislative process. The Oregon State Bar and its section and committee members will provide technical support to interim work groups that are working to update proposed statutory fixes for the next legislative session.

During the interim, Bar members will be engaged in a number of work groups and task forces. Below is a list of a few of the concepts being considered:

      • Advance directives
      • Child custody
      • Oregon guardianship provisions
      • ORS chapter 63, Limited Liability Companies
      • ORS chapter 65, Nonprofit Corporations
      • Probate modernization

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      The Oregon Judicial Department Request for Comments

      The Oregon Judicial Department is seeking public comment on the following changes to the Uniform Trial Court Rules (UTCR):

          • Proposed 2.150 (confidential financial information) for possible out-of-cycle adoption, with related Forms 2.150.1 and 2.150.2, and with conforming amendments to 2.100 and 2.110
          • New 4.110 adopted out-of-cycle by Chief Justice Order 17-039, effective August 1, 2017
          • 19.020 amended out-of-cycle by Supreme Court Order 17-028, effective June 6, 2017

      These changes and additional information may be reviewed at:

      Comment submission may be done by:

      Please submit comments so that the Oregon Judicial Department receives them by 5:00 p.m. on September 29, 2017. Comments will be reviewed by the UTCR committee at its next meeting, currently scheduled for October 20, 2017.

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      Lunchtime CLEs returning to the Capitol

      Is 2017 your reporting year? This fall the interim Senate Committee on Judiciary and the Oregon State Bar will be cohosting lunchtime CLEs during the September and November Legislative Days. Additional information will be shared closer to the dates.

      For an up-to-date record of your MCLE credits on file, go to the Bar’s website ( and log on through the Member Login link on the top of the page.

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      What’s Next

      September Legislative Days
      September 18th – 20th

      HOD Resolution Deadline
      September 19th

      BOG Election candidate statement deadline
      September 26th

      HOD Regional Meetings Scheduled
      October 17th – 19th

      BOG Election
      October 23rd

      HOD Annual Meeting
      November 3rd

      November Legislative Days
      November 13th – 15th

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      Thank you for reading the Oregon State Bar’s CAPITOL INSIDER.
      The archives are available here.

      2017 Public Affairs Committee Members

      Kathleen Rastetter, Chair
      John Mansfield, Vice Chair
      Guy Greco
      John Bachofner
      Chris Costantino
      Rob Gratchner
      Eric Foster
      Liani Reeves

      Public Affairs Department

      Susan Grabe, Public Affairs Director
      Amy Zubko, Public Affairs Legislative Attorney
      Matt Shields, Public Affairs Staff Attorney
      Kellie Baumann, Public Affairs Assistant

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