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Congratulations to the New House Dems Leadership Team!

The New House Democratic Leadership Team:
House Democratic Leader Jeff Merkley, Outer East Portland

Assistant Democratic Leaders
Phil Barnhart, Eugene, Coburg, Creswell
Peter Buckley, Ashland, Talent, Phoenix, Jacksonville
Dave Hunt, Milwaukie, Oak Grove, Gladstone
Arnie Roblan, Coos Bay, North Bend, Reedsport, Florence
Diane Rosenbaum, SE Portland
Chip Shields, NE Portland

New assistant leaders from South Coast and Ashland provide geographical balance

The House Democrats reelected four-term Rep. Jeff Merkley (D-Portland) this week as the House Democratic Leader, and have added two members from southern Oregon to their leadership team in an effort to include the concerns of rural Oregonians in crafting an agenda.

In a meeting of the caucus Tuesday, the House Democrats reelected four-term Rep. Diane Rosenbaum (D-Portland), three-term Rep. Phil Barnhart (D-Eugene), and two-term Rep. Dave Hunt (D-Clackamas) to positions of assistant leadership. They also elected Rep. Arnie Roblan (D-Coos Bay), Rep. Chip Shields (D-Portland), and Rep. Peter Buckley (D-Ashland) as assistant Democratic leaders—all of whom are serving their first terms.

Comments for House Democratic Leader Jeff Merkley:

"The House Democrats feel a deep concern for the issues face residents of the South Coast, rural communities and southern Oregon. With this leadership team, we can address Oregon’s problems with a sense of geographical balance."

"Now that the legislative session is over, we must begin preparing for the future. The House Democrats will craft a new legislative agenda that addresses the problems Oregonians care most about—schools, health care, jobs and safe communities. This is a leadership team that believes in jobs, education, economic progress and justice for all Oregonians."

"Many good bills died in the 2005 session because powerful special interests controlled the House Republican leadership. Among the failed bills were the following:

• Senate Bill 329, which would have expanded the state’s drug purchasing pool to allow private businesses and individuals to save money on prescription drugs.

• Senate Bill 766, which would have eliminated unreasonably rich severance packages for superintendents of school districts, as well as retirement benefits better than those of other school employees—the so-called “golden parachutes.” The bill would have saved money for schools, and allow stronger investment in the classroom.

• Senate Bill 841 and Senate Joint Resolution 2 addressed the Education Stability Fund, commonly known as the “Rainy Day” fund. The first would have required transfer of the entire General Fund ending balance (up to a limit of two percent of all General Fund expenditures) to the Education Stability Fund. The second would have referred a constitutional amendment to the voters, enabling them to increase the Education Stability Fund from five percent to 10 percent of General Fund revenues.

• Senate Bill 545, a bill that would have regulated the presently unregulated “payday loan” industry."

"Our agenda addresses the real-world problems that real Oregonians face every day. It’s time for a change in Oregon. We believe it’s time for the Legislature to earn back the respect of the people."

August 11, 2005 by News
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We've been so busy with the plans for 2006 that we've neglected the blog. Apologies to frequent visitors. We'll be back with new content and to keep the conversation going soon.

Posted by: Rep. Peter Buckley | Sep 7, 2005 7:43:52 AM

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