The 2020 Oregon Legislature convened February 3 for its 35-day "short session." Originally intended for emergency housekeeping measures, the short session, which is held in even-numbered years, has strict limits on how many bills each legislator can introduce (one for each senator and two for each representative) and bills must move quickly through the process (outlined in the graphic above) or they die.
We are focused primarily on two issues this session. First, we are strongly supporting House Bill 4075, which would ban coyote-killing contests in Oregon. See our prior News post for more information on this issue and how you can get involved. Second, we are getting involved on a number of bills related, directly or indirectly, to industrial-scale "confined animal feeding operations" (CAFOs). We are opposing Senate Bill 1513, which would make modest changes to permitting criteria for "large" confined animal feeding operations, on grounds it's not nearly enough to address the economic, environmental and animal-welfare problems created by large dairy CAFOs, as illustrated by the recent example of Lost Valley Farm (see our prior News posts on that issue). We also joined with other groups to weigh in on a bill to address climate change, Senate Bill 1530. We praised efforts to address the problem, which is hurting animals as well as people in many ways, but pointed out that animal agriculture, which would not be covered by the new regulations, is a leading cause of greenhouse gas emissions. We also pointed out that incentives in the proposed legislation for the "capture" of methane from animal manure may actually make climate change worse by incentivizing factory farming.
For a complete list of the bills we are tracking, our position, and the reasons for it, go here. To see the full text of a bill, along with its history, scheduled events and other information, click on the bill number in our list. You should feel free to contact your state legislators at any time about any of these bills. Click here to find out who your legislators are if you don't already know (you have one senator and one representative). Click the link to their websites for contact information. We will also let you know of strategic times to comment on the pending legislation we consider most important.
Thank you for your interest in animal welfare!