Politics & Government

Politics & Government

Oregon's November election features a governor's race and a couple of hotly-debated measures. In order to cast a ballot, voters must register by Tuesday.

Lane County Clerk Cheryl Betschart says there are several ways to register to vote by Tuesday:

Betschart: "You can go online at Oregonvotes.gov. That is available for those that have a driver's license, an Oregon i.d. card, or a permit.  And that can be done from the convenience of your home at a computer and that can happen all the way up to 11:59 p.m."

Wikimedia Commons

Eugene is among many cities and counties in Oregon considering a tax on recreational marijuana. The City Council wants to hear from the public before the November Election.

Mjpresson Wikimedia

The Lane County Board of Commissioners voted 4 to 1 Tuesday to move forward with a local tax on recreational marijuana. The tax would be conditional on Oregon voters approving Measure 91, which would legalize recreational pot.  Commissioner Pete Sorenson was the only no vote. The board had been considering taxing medical marijuana as well but decided not to do so.

The board will hold public hearing on the proposed ordinance at its regular meeting next Tuesday.

www.newslincolncounty.com

The Port of Newport plans to expand, yet an important safety service is scheduled to be eliminated. Newport's Coast Guard air facility, including its rescue helicopter station, is slated to close at the end of November.

Once the Newport facility closes, the closest rescue helicopters will be in North Bend, 60 minutes away by air. Captain Todd Trimpert is Commander at the North Bend station. He says the government is under pressure to allocate their resources more effectively:

Merkley campaign

Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren rallied a crowd of Democratic Party faithful for Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley Monday. She spoke at the University of Oregon.

greatbuildings.com

There will be no wrecking ball at Eugene’s City Hall. The structure is being disassembled. This week, western red cedar slats and some heavy paving stones are being removed.

The pavers that made up the concrete plaza outside the Council Chamber are being transported to BRING Recycling. Each paver weighs over 100 pounds and more than 2,000 of them have already been moved. BRING’s Executive Director, Julie Daniel, says they’re prepared to store the blocks, plus whatever other cabinets, fixtures and fittings they can take from the building.

The Lane County Board is the latest local government considering imposing a tax on marijuana.

Commissioners Tuesday directed staff attorneys to draft an ordinance that would put a tax on recreational and medical marijuana if Oregon voters approve a pot legalization measure in November.  Commissioner Faye Stewart said he sees this as an opportunity.

Stewart: "I have heard from folks in my travels that when it comes to public safety funding look for new sources. So I see this as a potential opportunity for public safety funding, if this was a viable option."

Desmond O'Boyle

While in Eugene last week, Oregon U.S. Senator Ron Wyden spoke with KLCC's Desmond O'Boyle about funding for rural parts of the state and the rising costs of fighting wildfires.

Senator Wyden has worked to renew The Secure Rural Schools Act several times, most recently in 2013. The Act ensures funding to rural areas not collecting the timber revenue at the rate they once did. Oregon's share of the Secure Rural Schools Act is more than 2 billion dollars annually. Wyden says as far as providing financial assistance to the State, this is a very important bill.

Desmond O'Boyle

Oregon U.S. Senator Ron Wyden discussed protecting privacy in the digital age at the Club of Eugene, Friday.

As a longtime member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, the Democrat has been critical of government programs collecting large amounts of data on U.S. Citizens. Wyden is concerned the merging of communications systems worldwide will cause innocent Americans to be swept up in searches that target overseas terrorist threats.

On The Campaign Trail With Wehby And Merkley

Sep 26, 2014
OPB News

One of Oregon’s two senate seats is up for grabs this election season. The frontrunners are incumbent Democrat Jeff Merkley and Republican Monica Wehby.

On a recent Saturday morning in Portland, Jeff Merkley met with volunteers at one of his offices.

Retiree Carol Adler was there to show her support.

“I just think he’s terrific. I’ve been volunteering a bit here and I had a house party for him where I live,” Adler said.

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