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House and Senate Judiciary Committees Hold Informational Hearings on 2022 Legislative Concepts and Proposals
On January 12 and 13, the House and Senate Judiciary Committees each met to receive reports on issues of interest and to hold informational hearings on possible legislative concepts. Due to scheduling difficulties, the committees met separately. Both committees took the opportunity to discuss bills that will be introduced during the 2022 legislative session.
In addition, both committees received reports from a variety of entities on issues of interest, including a presentation in the Senate Judiciary Committee by the Oregon State Bar on Oregon Law+Connect, a legal services web portal for self-represented Oregonians.
House Interim Judiciary Committee
- Jailhouse Lawyer Incident
- Tear Gas Incident
2022 Legislator Concepts
2022 House Judiciary Committee Bills
Senate Interim Judiciary Committee and Ballot Measure 110 Implementation Committee
2022 Senate Judiciary Committee Bills
Ways and Means Public Safety Subcommittee Considers Funding Requests
During the January Legislative Days, the Oregon Judicial Department (OJD) submitted two budgetary items for consideration by the Joint Ways and Means Committee, the budget committee for the Oregon Legislature. Both requests, discussed during a hearing held held on January 12, 2022, were adopted and will be incorporated into a budget rebalance bill during the 2022 legislative session. The Public Defense Services Commission, as well as the Oregon Department of Justice, also submitted funding requests. To review the full agenda, please go to the Public Safety Subcommittee’s agenda.
Clackamas County Courthouse
During the 2021 legislative session, the legislature provided placeholder funding for the Clackamas County Courthouse Replacement Project, with a request that OJD and the county return during the 2022 legislative session with additional information (HB 5006 – Bill and Budget Report). During the January Legislative Days, the Ways and Means Committee acknowledged receipt of the report. The authority to move forward with the project along with approximately $94.5 million bonding authority is expected to be included in the end of session rebalance legislation. Similar to other courthouse replacement projects over the last decade, Clackamas County will be responsible for one half of the funding for the project.
Reorganization of the Office of the State Court Administrator
The Office of the State Court Administrator (OSCA) resides within OJD and assists the Chief Justice with the administration of the circuit, tax, and appellate courts in Oregon. The OSCA supports and assists the Chief Justice in her administrative duties by providing oversight of central business and infrastructure, including budget, accounting, revenue/collections, procurement, human resources, legal, internal audit, public information, data analysis, education and outreach, statewide forms and materials, business continuity planning, and information technology.
OJD’s proposal, which was accepted by the full Ways and Means Committee, and is expected to be included in the 2022 budget rebalance bill, will provide an approximately $2.5 million increase in funding during the 2021–2023 biennial budget and provide authority for 15 new positions and a reorganization of the office.
Public Defense Services Commission
During the January Legislative Days, the Public Defense Services Commission had three budgetary proposals for the legislature to consider: the implementation of SB 578 (2021), an information technology contract extension, and an increase in funding for staff for the juvenile appellate section.
SB 578 (2021) establishes a pilot project to provide counsel for persons in protective proceedings when certain criteria are met. An attorney will be funded by the state unless a protected person has sufficient funds in their estate. The Ways and Means Committee approved funding for one limited-duration full-time position to be included in the 2022 budget rebalance bill. In addition, the Ways and Means Committee approved funding for a senior juvenile appellate attorney. The requested authority for the information technology contract extension will be revisited in May 2022.
Oregon Department of Justice
During January Legislative Days, the Oregon Department of Justice submitted a request for funding for additional staff to represent state agencies. Nine permanent full-time senior assistant attorney general positions were approved to be included in the 2022 legislative session rebalance bill.
Bills of Interest
The deadline for submitting legislation for the 2022 legislative session was January 14, 2022. These bills were published on the Oregon Legislative Information System (OLIS) on January 25, 2022, prior to the beginning of the session. Below are some of the legislative concepts that may be of interest.
- HB 4017 – Requires business entity that collects, stores or transfers personal data of resident individual to register with Department of Consumer and Business Services as data broker.
- HB 4073 – Modifies provisions relating to peremptory challenges to jurors.
- HB 4075 – Modifies procedures for requesting and ordering restitution in criminal cases.
- SB 1511 – Creates process by which person convicted or found guilty except for insanity as result of nonunanimous jury verdict may file petition for postconviction relief within one year of effective date of Act. Sunsets on January 1, 2025.
Turnover in Oregon Legislature Brings Many New Faces
Since 2020, ten legislators have resigned their seats in the state House and Senate either to retire or to run for a different office. This has led to a waterfall of position changes both in the addition of new faces in the legislature and changes in leadership. Since the end of the 2021 legislative session, the following legislators have been appointed:
Representative Anna Scharf (R-Dallas)
Representative Christine Goodwin (R – Roseburg)
Senator Akasha Lawrence Spence (Dt – Portland)
Representative Chris Hoy (D – Salem)
Representative Jessica George (R – Keizer)
Senator Rachel Armitage (D – Scappoose)
Senator Janeen Sollman (D – Hillsboro)
On January 27, 2022, Travis Nelson was appointed to fill former Representative Tina Kotek’s seat by the Multnomah County Commissioners. There are currently two seats open and scheduled to be filled by county appointment. Representative Christine Drazen resigned in January and Representative Sollman has been appointed to fill former Senator Chuck Riley’s seat.
Thank you to those legislators who have served in the Oregon Legislature and specifically to the legally trained legislators.
Thank you for reading the Oregon State Bar’s CAPITOL INSIDER.
The archives are available here.
2022 Oregon State Bar Officers and Public Affairs Chair
Kamron Graham, President, Oregon State Bar
Lee Ann Donaldson, President Elect, Oregon State Bar
David Wade, Immediate Past President, Oregon State Bar
Joseph Piucci, Chair, Public Affairs Committee, Oregon State Bar Board of Governors