Archive for the ‘Newsletter’ Category

2015 Oregon State Chamber’s Legislative Priorities

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015

Oregon State Chamber of Commerce

The 2015 OSCC Legislative Agenda represents the legislative priorities of the Main Street business community as represented by the 66 local Chambers of Commerce represented by the Oregon State Chamber of Commerce.

The OSCC is organized to support business growth, job growth and income growth in each of our local communities, many of which have not realized the economic gains seen in the Portland/Metro Area in recent years.

We believe a healthy business climate, and the jobs that such a business climate creates, is the key to building up our local communities and making them prosperous.

The 2015 OSCC Legislative Agenda reflects our belief that state government can be a valuable partner in helping our local communities grow and prosper.  But the tens of thousands of businesses that belong to our local chambers also caution the Oregon Legislature against enacting counter-productive policies that would effectively block our ability to create jobs and more prosperous communities.

The OSCC Legislative Agenda is equal parts proactive and defensive.  We recognize there are many threats to small and Main Street business viability that will emerge from the 2015 Oregon Legislature, but we are also optimistic that the Legislature will see the wisdom in promoting business growth in all corners of the state and will pursue an agenda that elevates all local communities and sets the stage for long term growth and prosperity in every community across Oregon. 

The OSCC Opportunity Agenda for Local Business and Communities includes:

    1-Transportation Investments.  OSCC will be supportive of efforts to create a comprehensive transportation infrastructure funding package paid for by an increase in the state gas tax.  OSCC is also supportive of efforts to revitalize and leverage federal dollars to repair local airports across Oregon through an increase in the jet fuel tax or through bonding.  Finally, OSCC supports multi-modal transportation investments through a Connect Oregon bonding package.

    2-Expansion of Small Business Tax Cut.  The 2013 Special Session of the Oregon Legislature recognized the need to create a lower tax rate for small business pass-through entities (S corps, LLCs, etc).  OSCC not only seeks to protect this rate cut for existing employers, but to expand it for the smallest businesses that are sole proprietors or have only part-time employees.    We also support common-sense small business tax provisions such as connecting to the federal tax code for consistent expensing and depreciation laws.

    3-Natural Resource Utilization.  The Governor allocated $30 million in his budget to put in place the infrastructure to add storage capacity for water from the Columbia River.  This not only has immediate ramifications for local communities in NE Oregon, but it has future benefits for agriculture and food production statewide.  OSCC also supports innovative projects such as the Urban Forestry Co-op pilot project for Clackamas County that will create local wood supplies that can be harvested and milled and turned into building materials locally. 

    4-Career & Technical Education/Workforce Development.  OSCC supports initiatives that enhance the existing pool of skilled workers, including on-the-job training.  OSCC supports initiatives that enhances the skills of incumbent workers, matches job skills to current employer needs, and continues or enhances funding for Career & Technical Education programs.

    5-Local Community Development & Tourism.  OSCC supports efforts to revitalize our local communities through tourism.  OSCC also supports specific efforts to revitalize our local communities, such as the Revitalize Main Street Act, which provides a 25% rebate for certified rehabilitation of historic commercial buildings in communities throughout Oregon.   Such a proposal would generate 1,300 local jobs and $25 million in additional local income.  OSCC will also support legislation to encourage local brownfields redevelopment as well as increase the supply of industrial land that can support business and job growth.

The OSCC Defensive Agenda for Local Business and Communities includes:

    1-Expansion of Business Mandates & Regulation.  The small business community, particularly in rural Oregon, cannot sustain the cost of a paid sick leave mandate without further compromising our rural job base.  OSCC opposes expansion of the Portland paid sick leave mandate to all Oregon businesses.  Small employers all across Oregon develop their own workable sick leave policies every day without costly and impractical government mandates.  A paid sick leave mandate not only represents a new 3% payroll tax for small business, but even worse it has the effect of overriding a small business’s employee attendance policies.  OSCC is also highly skeptical of redundant “pay equity” mandate proposals that shift the burden of proof to employers and additional leave laws that add to Oregon’s already generous workplace leave provisions.

    2-Increased taxes on businesses & individuals.  Oregon’s general fund is projected to grow at an 11% rate for the 2015-17 biennium.  OSCC believes there is not a compelling need for additional resources from the business community or individual Oregonians.  Oregon’s income, investment, and business income tax rates are already among the highest in the United States.  

Our local communities cannot withstand further discouragement of investment and punitive taxes on mobile income.  

    3-Low Carbon Fuel Standard.  The low-carbon fuel additives needed to achieve this mandate are not commercially available for Oregon consumers in adequate supplies.  The Clean Fuels Program will effectively translate into significant increases in fuel costs as the Oregon mandate will create demand for a product in extremely limited supply.  Our local communities today are just starting to realize the benefits of more disposable income due to lower fuel costs.  To deny 

our communities of this disposable income by artificially driving the cost of fuel back up with this costly mandate will hurt local communities.  We also oppose this mandate because it will drive up fuel costs and not put any money into our transportation infrastructure.

    4-State-run retirement plan for private sector employers/employees.  There are thousands of retirement products available to our local small businesses and their employees, and sold by our local small businesses.  The addition of one state-run retirement plan as a solution to our state’s retirement savings crisis is both disingenuous and dangerous.  It’s dangerous because a state-run plan will have no more benefit than any of the 10,000+ privately managed plans in existence today unless it is mandated for Oregon employers, which is what we fear is the ultimate goal for this proposal.

    5-Increased minimum wage beyond current law annual CPI increases.  Oregon’s minimum wage law is already fair.  Already one of the highest minimum wage rates in the nation, Oregon’s minimum wage increases each and every year based on the Portland CPI.  Increasing the minimum wage to $15 per hour, or even $12 per hour, will have the effect of immediate and significant job loss, especially among young and low-skilled workers, and will further hurt the ability of small business to compete with big businesses that can afford to pay higher wages or businesses in other states that do not have similar wage laws.

Bond Measure Approved for CCC

Monday, November 24th, 2014

 

To the Community:

On Nov. 4, voters in the college district approved a $90 million bond measure that will pave the way for updating, modernizing and improving college facilities. This bond measure will fulfill business and community members’ expectations for training and education.

Passage of the bond will also enable us to secure $16 million in state matching funds to construct facilities that meet the needs of today’s career technical fields and build a workforce development center at our Harmony Community Campus. We will also raise at least $5 million in private donations to support the bond proceeds.

To those of you who gave of your time and energy to support the bond, I extend a special thank you.

I am thankful that our bond measure received wide support among the leaders in the county, cities, chambers and newspapers in the region. Education and training are important to and valued by all. But most of all, I am thankful to the members of our community for their investment in CCC.

Moving forward, we will work diligently to ensure that CCC uses these resources wisely. We will mark our 50th year of service in less than two years. Because of your support, CCC will be well positioned to serve the community for the next 50 years.

Warm regards,

President Joanne Truesdell
CCC Class of 1982

Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project

Monday, May 12th, 2014

The next meeting of the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Transit Project Citizens Advisory Committee is Thursday, May 15, 2014, from 6 to 7 p.m. The public is invited to attend. The meeting will include updates on safety outreach and on the bus service planning process as it relates to future light rail service.

More

Location: Project East Field Office, 2300 SE Beta St., Milwaukie. 

Clackamas County’s Tourism Development Coucil Seeks Members

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014

            Clackamas County’s Tourism Development Council seeks members

The Clackamas County Board of Commissioners is seeking citizens to fill two upcoming vacancies on the Tourism Development Council (TDC). The TDC guides tourism programs funded through the county’s Transient Room Tax. Its members are appointed by the Board of County Commissioners and are authorized to oversee tourism promotion and development in Clackamas County.

Commissioners are looking for applicants who are currently affiliated with a lodging property located within the county. Those with a broad perspective and strong interest in implementing an energized and comprehensive tourism program for The county will be the most desirable candidates.

The TDC is comprised of nine members, appointed to a three year term. Board members represent the diverse population of the county. The TDC meets the second Monday of the month from 2-4 p.m., generally at county headquarters located in Oregon City.

The TDC develops, adopts, and implements, subject to the Board of County Commission’s approval, a Tourism 5-year Master Plan. They also develop an annual Business Plan to address tourism promotion and development, visitor information services, and special events and festivals in Clackamas County as described in the county’s Transient Room Tax Ordinance, approved by voters in 1992. Currently county TRT collections are approximately $4 million annually.

Interested individuals need to complete an application form. Applications may be completed and submitted online via the county’s website at http://www.clackamas.us/miscapp/application.jsp

For an application form in person, contact Clackamas County Public and Government Affairs or at the Public Services Building, 2051 Kaen Road, Oregon City.   The deadline for applications is May 29.

For more information on the marketing and tourism developmentefforts of Clackamas County Tourism and Cultural Affairs, visit MtHoodTerritory.com. 

For more information please contact Janice Nilson at: 503-655-8490 or jnilson@clackamas.us.

Chamber Endorsement 2014 May

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

In the Chamber’s practice of providing guidance to its members, for May’s primary election we focus on three county races: county commissioner, clerk and treasurer.

 After hearing from all the candidates during the Eggs N’ Issues breakfast held on April 10th and during our in depth interviews, we are excited by the overall caliber of the candidates. We found many high-quality candidates, making our deliberations a greater pleasure and a deeper challenge.

 County Clerk

 In a shared endorsement, we believe that either business owners Mark Meek or David Robinson, thanks in part to their military training, problem-solving expertise and effective personalities, would bring to the office discipline, regulation, improved communications and personal connections.

 Mark Meek is a well-connected part of the community and shows that he can handle a complex organization. David Robinson has remarkable credentials, a history of impressive accomplishments and the strategic planning skills needed for the office.

 Treasurer

 Current Treasurer Shari Anderson faces two opponents in her attempt to retain her position she has held since 1999. We are fortunate to have Shari Anderson as the county treasurer and fully support her re-election.


County Commission

 It may be a dream, but we like our politics local and with integrity. We encourage our members to get to know the candidates rather than relying on the broad, irrational and negative advertising brought to our community. Please vote for the person, not the billboard. This approach to winning voters is embarrassing and unfair to our county. It undermines any effort to grow respect for county leadership and direction.

 Position 2: Savas-Bowerman

 We endorse incumbent Paul Savas. Ubiquitous and thorough on the issues, the long-time community activist and small business owner has worked very hard in his first term to represent his constituents and work toward collaborative solutions. We encourage him to develop more creativity in his political approach to the conflicts he faces on the commission.

 Position 5—Bernard-Bates

 A believer in small government, challenger Stephen Bates shows that he has potential. He is earnest, thoughtful, and an advocate for all things Boring. We would like to see him gain experience in larger organizations.

 However, we find no reason not to support incumbent Jim Bernard, given his greater understanding of the practicalities of county governance and the wisdom that comes from years of public service. He has been an integral part of our chamber and this community; and remains active in his support of the chamber agenda.

 

Clackamas County Board approves one-year moratorium on medical marijuana facilities in unincorporated areas

Tuesday, April 29th, 2014

 The Clackamas County Board of Commissioners today adopted an ordinance to set a moratorium until May 1, 2015 on the operation of medical marijuana facilities in unincorporated Clackamas County.  The new ordinance goes into effect immediately.

 The proposed ordinance was adopted after the Commissioners heard from a number of residents, some in favor of the moratorium and others opposed, at public hearings April 3 and today. 

 Commissioners said passage of a moratorium now will allow the county to make an informed decision on potential future regulations.

 “I don’t think any of us up here have any doubt that (medical) marijuana does some good for some people,” said Chair John Ludlow. “We will not make a decision on time, place and manner in a vacuum.”

 “I believe this moratorium will provide Clackamas County sufficient time to answer the questions of land use, code violations, community impacts, and legal regulations,” said Commissioner Martha Schrader in a written statement. Schrader was unable to attend because she was representing the county in a meeting with Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber and representatives from a large corporation seeking to invest in this region.

 “I’m going to support a moratorium but I am going to continue in my efforts to put in safeguards for youth. We’re going to move forward in a very thoughtful manner,” said Commissioner Tootie Smith.

 “I want to look deeper into the federal prescription issue,” said Commissioner Paul Savas. “But we can’t do this after the fact – we have to take advantage of this opportunity from the state to approve a moratorium.”

 “It’s important that the county and Sheriff’s Office have a role in whether a facility deserves a license and (approving a moratorium) will give us time to work on that,” said Commissioner Jim Bernard.

 Medical marijuana dispensaries are licensed through the Oregon Health Authority (OHA). At this time OHA has approved three licensed dispensaries in Clackamas County, but the location of those facilities is confidential unless the owner/operator allows the OHA to release the information.  The county has no authority over dispensaries that operate in incorporated areas of the county.

 The ordinance charges the Sheriff’s Office with enforcement of the moratorium.

 The Board acted quickly in response to a new state law that gives local governments the opportunity to impose a moratorium on medical marijuana dispensaries up until May 1, 2015, if the ordinance is adopted by May 1. 

 For more information, contact please contact Tim Heider at 503-742-6911 or theider@clackamas.us

Clackamas County declines to participate in public sector bid to purchase Blue Heron property

Tuesday, April 29th, 2014

 Clackamas County will not join with Metro and Oregon City in an effort to outbid a private developer for the former Blue Heron property.

 Clackamas County Commissioners said there was not enough time to fully consider the financial impacts and structure of the bid proposal due by the deadline of 5 p.m. today.  The request to participate came in late Wednesday, April 23rd from Metro staff. 

 “It would normally take 30 to 60 days to negotiate the terms of a deal like this,” said County Administrator Don Krupp.

 The former Blue Heron site, which is located along the Willamette River in downtown Oregon City, was closed in February 2009.  The property has been in bankruptcy for several years. 

Clackamas County, Metro and Oregon City, along with other regional partners, have been working with a consulting firm to develop a concept plan in order to attract developers to the site.  Clackamas County has invested $100,000 towards the visioning process with potential future financial assistance.

 “The County remains committed to the vision for this site and the public partnership that has been working diligently over the last couple of years,” said Commissioner Tootie Smith.  “There just isn’t enough time today to fully examine the commitment we are being asked to make.” 

 A Washington State developer has submitted a $2.3 million offer to purchase the property from the bankruptcy trustee.  An overbid would have to exceed that amount. 

 “Public sector support may be needed to spur redevelopment of the site,” said Commissioner Martha Schrader. “I hope we can continue to work together to develop the right approach.”

 The Willamette Falls Legacy concept plan can be viewed at www.rediscoverthefalls.com.

 For more information please contact Tim Heider at 503-742-5911 or theider@clackamas.us

CCC presentation explores ideas about life and death around the globe

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

Cross-cultural concepts of life and death will be explored in a May 5 presentation at Clackamas Community College (CCC). Courtney Campbell of Oregon State University will discuss “Grave Matters: Reflections of Life and Death Across Cultures and Traditions” from 3:00 to 5:00pm in the Gregory Forum. The presentation is part of the college’s International Week celebration.

Campbell is the Hundere Chair in Religion and Culture and a professor of the School of History, Philosophy and Religion at OSU. He has been on the OSU faculty since 1990 and has received numerous awards for teaching and scholarship. His primary teaching and research interests focus on ethical issues in medicine, religious ethics, concept of peace and war, theories of death and dying, and theologies of embodiment.

This program is hosted by the CCC Foundation, the International Education Committee and the Education, Human Services and Criminal Justice Department, and is sponsored by Oregon Humanities. This event is open to the public and there is no cost to attend.

For more information, please contact Ida Flippo at iflipp@clackamsa.edu or 503-594-3363.

CCC classes support Goodwill Industries managers

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

Clackamas Community College (CCC) is providing business classes to 29 managers at Goodwill Industries store in Salem. The classes, offered by the college’s ActOn Retail grant staff, will prepare the Goodwill employees to earn a Retail Management certificate at CCC, aimed at increasing professionalism and opportunity.

Paul Moredock, director of the ActOn grant at CCC, has been working with Goodwill for several months to develop the partnership and coursework for the employees. “The retail management certificate fits well with the mission and goals of Goodwill Industries,” he said.

Students in the Goodwill class are taking Business Administration 285, Human Relations in Business. The class is in a hybrid format. A CCC instructor teaches at Goodwill once a week for two hours, and students study in an online format for the other instructional portion. In addition, the ActOn grant staff provides support to the students through individual career coaching.

Once the students finish the initial course, CCC will work with Goodwill to provide each of the nine classes in the certificate program. Additional groups of students are planned for Goodwill employees in Vancouver, Wash., and Wilsonville.

CCC developed a retail management certificate program several years ago to meet the needs of the industry in Clackamas County and surrounding areas. The federal ActOn grant provides additional support and resources to advance the program to both incumbent workers in the industry and to connect business students with opportunities in the retail sector. Salaries for retail managers in the region start at about $43,000 annually.

Goodwill’s mission is to help people with barriers to employment connect to work or grow in the job they already have. “This class elevates our employee confidence and professional service our shoppers deserve,” said Terry Gillette, Career Center information and systems program manager, at Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette. “The program was affordable, the curriculum was on track, and it’s time efficient.”

For more information about the ActOn Retail grant at CCC, please contact Paul Moredock at 503-594-6186 or email paulm@clackamas.edu.

Adventist Health Medical Group recognized for the highest level of patient centered care

Monday, April 14th, 2014

Seven Adventist Health Medical Group (AHMG) clinics in Portland are being honored by the Oregon Health Authority for achieving the highest level of Patient Centered Primary Care Home in the state.

This means that patients receiving care at these Tier:3 clinics receive the most comprehensive level of coordinated care, with an emphasis on prevention and managing chronic conditions. Primary Care Homes can lead to higher quality and lower costs, and can improve patients’ and providers’ experience of care. “This team based health care delivery model provides comprehensive and continuous medical care to patients with the goal of obtaining maximized health outcomes by focusing on wellness,” states Dr. Leonard Bertheau, Medical Director of Population Health for AHMG.

Core Attributes to a Patient Centered Primary Care Home include:

  •  Access to care: Patients get the care they need, when they need it.
  • Accountability: Recognized clinics are responsible for making sure patients receive the best possible care.
  • Comprehensive: Clinics provide patients all the care, information and services they need.
  • Continuity: Clinics work with patients and their community to improve patient and population health over time.
  • Coordination and integration: Clinics help patients navigate the system to meet their needs in a safe and timely way.
  • Patient and family-centered: Clinics recognize that patients are the most important members of the health care team and that they are ultimately responsible for their overall health and wellness.

Few primary care clinics in Oregon have received the coveted Tier:3 designation. The AHMG clinics receiving this distinction are: Clackamas Family Practice, Sandy Family Practice and Urgent Care, Parkrose Family Practice, Damascus Family Practice, Cherry Park Family Practice, Eastside Internal Medicine and Internal Medicine Associates.

About Adventist Health Adventist Medical Center (AMC), located in southeast Portland, is a nonprofit, 302-bed acute care facility, offering a full range of inpatient, outpatient and emergency services throughout the Portland/Vancouver metropolitan area is the flagship of Adventist Health services in the Portland area. Adventist Health-Portland, is staffed my more than 2,000 employees and includes 34 primary care and specialty clinics in the metro area.

Adventist Health-Portland is part of Adventist Health, a faith-based, not-for-profit integrated health care delivery system serving communities in California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington. Our workforce of 28,600 includes more than 20,500 employees; 4,500 medical staff physicians; and 3,600 volunteers. Founded on Seventh-day Adventist health values, Adventist Health provides compassionate care in 19 hospitals, more than 220 clinics (hospital-based, rural health and physician clinics), 14 home care agencies, seven hospice agencies and four joint-venture retirement centers. We invite you to visit our website for more information.