Oregon Will Become Second State to Offer Free Community College

Lawmakers approve new program in last minute pre-holiday vote


More than 10,000 students are expected to benefit from a last-minute bill passed by legislators this week that makes Oregon only the second state (after Tennessee) to offer free community college.The idea, according to state Sen. Mark Hass (D-Beaverton), is that a lot of needy students who might like to attend community college are currently failing to apply for federal grants that could pay for much ...   More
Tuesday, July 7, 2015 NIGEL JAQUISS

A Sales Tax, Anybody?

Lawmakers are about to start debating a shakeup of the state’s tax system—and an unpopular idea leads the list.

News Stories
In the history of Oregon politics, there are few things voters have hated more than a sales tax. But when voters...   More
Wednesday, December 5, 2012 NIGEL JAQUISS

Hass Draws an Interesting Opponent


Sen. Mark Hass (D-Beaverton), the former KATU (Channel 2) reporter and current head of the Senate Education Committee did not have to work hard in his last election in District 14 (Beaverton, Raleigh Hills, Garden Home, Aloha and Murray Hill) in 2008, when he defeated his GOP opponent, Lisa Michaels, by more than a two-to-one margin. In 2012, his opponent might prove a little tougher. Gary Coe, an ...   More
Wednesday, September 21, 2011 by Nigel Jaquiss

Democrats Battle Each Other Over Education Reform

Oregon State Capitol.

Gov. John Kitzhaber and many lawmakers approached the 2011 legislative session seeking significant changes in the way Oregon schools operate. So far, many of the bills Kitzhaber and allies such as Senate Education Committee Chairman Mark Hass (D-Beaverton) hoped to pass remain mired in committee. Among the reforms: Kitzhaber wants all state education boards for K-12, community colleges and higher ed ...   More
Monday, June 6, 2011 NIGEL JAQUISS

Jack Shack Attack

The Legislature takes on Oregon’s proliferating lingerie shops.

News Stories
You’ve seen them along Northeast 82nd Avenue and lining the suburban strips of Washington County. With names like Hotties, Pussy Cats and Private Rendezvous, they advertise services from    More
Wednesday, March 30, 2011 JAMES PITKIN

Salem's Education Leaders On Teacher Layoffs

Oregon State Capitol.

When Gov. John Kitzhaber unveiled his budget last month, it included about $5.6 billion for K-12 education in Oregon. That's a lot of money but is also about $1 billion less than lawmakers and school districts thought they were going to get as recently as last June. Tax receipts simply have not kept pace with rising personnel costs, however, so the expected total of about $6.6 billion for K-12 education ...   More
Saturday, March 19, 2011 NIGEL JAQUISS

After Copenhagen: More Positive News on the Environment

Still nursing a nasty hangover from the disappointing Copenhagen climate summit? After Multnomah County last week added its second solar installation, here's another small pill that may provide a bit of relief. You may recall our coverage last spring of the Oregon Legislature's successful effort to ban a potentially toxic fire retardant in furniture. Despite hardball efforts by chemical lobbyists ...   More
Monday, December 21, 2009 JAMES PITKIN

State Lawmakers and Portland Mayor Agree to Collaborate on Plastic-Bag Ban (Updated)

Mayor Sam Adams has backtracked on his pledge to bring an anti-plastic-bag ordinance to City Council, conceding to state lawmakers' wishes that he instead support a non-binding resolution calling first for an Oregon-wide ban. In a memo signed July 22 [PDF], the mayor says he will bring an ordinance banning the petroleum-based bags in Portland only if the proposed state ban fails in the 2011 ...   More
Friday, July 23, 2010 BETH SLOVIC

State Lawmakers Meet With Portland Mayor About Plastic-Bag Ban

State lawmakers this afternoon met with Mayor Sam Adams about his efforts to ban plastic bags in Portland, a move that could upset plans in Salem to enact a statewide ban. The 12:30 pm meeting at City Hall doesn't appear on Adams' schedule, which suggests it was pulled together relatively spontaneously; a spokesman for the mayor did not respond immediately to a request for comment on what prompted ...   More
Wednesday, July 21, 2010 BETH SLOVIC


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