Politics & Government

Politics & Government

Tonight,  January 20, President Obama will deliver his State of the Union address starting at 6 pm.  

NPR will provide live anchored coverage of the President’s speech as well as the Republican response from Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa.

Robert Siegel will host. He'll be joined in the studio by White House Correspondent Tamara Keith, National Political Correspondent Mara Liasson and Senior Washington Editor Ron Elving. NPR’s Ailsa Chang will report live from the House chamber.

KLCC coverage of the speech and analysis will conclude at 8 pm.

  

Meeting Date: Friday January 16th, 2015

Air Date: Monday January 19th, 2015

Nearly one in three working families in the United States and in Oregon has trouble meeting their basic needs. Middle-class families in Oregon are struggling to maintain that status. Women and working families striving to join Oregon’s middle class face more barriers than ever before.

Oregon House Speaker Tina Kotek will talk about an “Opportunity Agenda” to address those issues built on three key platforms: expanding opportunity, rewarding work, and ensuring basic fairness.

City of Eugene

The Eugene City Council is considering a local option levy to improve public library services. The council heard Wednesday from Library Director Connie Bennett. She described options for a local funding levy. She also told a story of an elderly man who is a regular at the library. He'd been estranged from his family.

Bennett: "Library staff was able to connect him with his sister within a few weeks of her death. With your help we can multiply this kind of story by a thousand-fold by increasing access to library services in Eugene."

Vigils are being held across the country Tuesday, including in Eugene, to show opposition to the Keystone XL Pipeline. This week the U.S. Senate could approve legislation for the pipeline. President Barack Obama has indicated he will veto it.

The pipeline would move heavy crude from Canada's tar sands region through the U.S. to the Texas Gulf Coast. Supporters say it will create jobs and lower fuel prices.

Debra McGee is an activist with the No KXL Pipeline group in Lane County. She says they want Congress and the President to focus on clean energy projects.

greg346/FeaturePics.com

The Oregon Liquor Control Commission will be in charge of managing the State's upcoming recreational marijuana market. The agency is seeking input on how the law should work.

OLCC Commissioners and staff will be traveling across Oregon later this month asking local communities about how they want to see pot regulated. About 10 thousand people have already commented through an online survey. Some of the issues include advertising restrictions and accessibility to the product. Karynn Fish is a spokeswoman for the OLCC.

Tiffany Eckert

Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy presented community and employee awards, watched the swearing-in of city councilors and gave her State of the City Address at the Hult Center last night (Wednesday.)

“Today begins my 11th year as mayor.”

Mayor Piercy has announced she will not seek another term as Eugene’s mayor.

“And I am grateful for the privilege to serve in 2015.”

Piercy then prepared the crowd for her “Saint Nicklaus-like” work style.

Desmond O'Boyle

About 200 people packed Springfield’s Wildish Theater Tuesday evening to hear Mayor Christine Lundberg deliver her 5th “State of the City” address.

Mayor Lundberg began her speech by turning on a street lamp on the stage. This was to bring attention to the revitalization of downtown Springfield. The city is continuing to invest in infrastructure projects such as updated street lamps. Lundberg introduced a video highlighting the creation of its new Simpsons mural, which was unveiled last August. And she revealed a new project set to begin this year.

Lane County

The Lane County Board of Commissioners is considering asking voters to approve a vehicle registration fee to pay for maintenance of county roads.

The proposed fee would amount to an additional $35  a year for Lane County residents. That would almost double what it currently costs to register your car. Board Chair Jay Bozievich says the fee could be passed by commissioners but they wanted to go to voters.

Jes Burns / Earthfix

A nickel isn’t what it used to be. Back in the 1970s, two nickels could buy you a postage stamp, and a just few more could get you a loaf of bread. So when Oregon’s Bottle Bill went into effect in 1972, the nickel deposit on a soda made people take notice -- and return empties that were a large part of Oregon’s litter problem.

Not so today. But changes are underway to get Oregon’s plummeting bottle return rate back to early levels. Redemption centers continue to pop up.

And Oregonians will likely see the deposit raised to a dime sooner rather than later.
 

Lane County

Lane County Board of Commissioners Chair Pat Farr delivers his State of the County address Monday evening at 5 o'clock at the Lane Events Center.

Farr spoke earlier Monday with KLCC's Rachael McDonald. He says drafting a strategic plan for the county was one of the big accomplishments of 2014.

At Tuesday's meeting, the board will elect a new chair and take care of other New Year housekeeping items.
 

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