Every few years, the Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC) deliberates how to spend billions in statewide transportation funds by determining funding categories, such as investing in roadway maintenance, highway widening, or bike/pedestrian/transit/safety. For the past several months, the OTC has heard from the public and made a decision on how to invest more than $2B in transportation funding via the 2024-27 Statewide Transportation Investment Program (STIP).
Legislation & Implementation
This is an update to our earlier coverage of changes to speed setting authority and methodology in Oregon – read our previous post here.
The 2019 Oregon Legislature adjourned just hours before their constitutional deadline on June 30. This was a highly contentious session that received national news coverage for the partisan gridlock and multiple walkouts that occurred. Like so many others, we were waiting for news on priority bills right up until Sine Die. We had some significant wins this year, including the passage of a bill that phases out dirty diesel, and the death of a bill that would have removed local regulation of TNCs.
June 26, 2019 Update: All eyes are on the Oregon Legislature as the 2019 Session comes to a close. Although we had hoped for a statewide policy to reduce diesel emissions and phase out old dirty diesel engines this session, HB 2007 has been limited to the tri-county area. Still, the bill is a meaninful step forward and necessary to allocate remaining VW Settlement funds. HB 2007 has successfully passed the House and, along with many other important bills, awaits the Senate to resume its business.
In 2017, the city of Portland received local speed setting authority from the Oregon Legislature to reduce residential speeds from 25 to 20 mph. A rigorous “20 is Plenty” campaign and 2,100 new speed signs later, Portland has made significant strides towards slowing down cars. Meanwhile, other Oregon communities are interested in getting their own speed setting authority, including Eugene which recently adopted a 5-year Vision Zero Action Plan.
3/27/19 update: HB 2007 has been scheduled for a work session on April 4, 2019. The bill was scheduled prior to the first chamber deadline so that it may continue to advance this session. While no amendments have been posted yet, we're supporting partners in asking for amendments that will strengthen the bill. Read our post from earlier this month for more details:
With the First Chamber deadline quickly approaching, we're monitoring key transportation and climate bills advancing in the Oregon Legislature. Here are just a few bills we're watching: