“In more than 15 years working with the Oregon Legislature, I have never seen a session like this one,” said Paloma Sparks, vice president of government affairs at OBI. “While the COVID precautions and virtual process made direct advocacy more challenging for everyone, our voice on behalf of Oregon businesses was heard.”
Today, OBI joined 25 other chambers and association partners urging Gov. Brown and the Legislature to consider using American Rescue Plan funds to create an incentive program aimed at encouraging people to accept work rather than relying on continued unemployment benefits. Read the full letter here.
The problems we face are only getting more complex and intertwined, which means the solutions must be more comprehensive and creative. In other words, we need more Oregonians with a vision. In her monthly column, OBI Chair Karen Vineyard makes a big announcement about one of our most cherished traditions at OBI.
“The latest CDC guidance is welcome news for vaccinated Oregonians, and hopefully will encourage those who have yet to get their vaccine to sign up for an appointment as soon as possible,” said Sandra McDonough, president & CEO of OBI.
Gov. Brown announced on May 11 that she will fully reopen the state once the vaccine rate (adults 16+ with the first dose) hits 70% statewide. “Fully reopen” means risk levels will be eliminated, and businesses can return to normal operations, although mask and distancing requirements may continue. The governor said the state can hit that goal by late June with additional efforts to encourage broader vaccination.
“We appreciate that the governor is allowing these Oregon businesses to reopen,” said Sandra McDonough, OBI’s president and CEO. “Hopefully, this will be the end of the COVID business closures and we will move swiftly to fully reopening our state’s economy.”
On May 4, the Oregon Occupational Health & Safety Administration (OSHA) filed permanent workplace rules related to COVID. OSHA had previously adopted temporary rules on Nov. 6, 2020 and those rules were set to expire today.
This week, Gov. Kate Brown announced that 15 of Oregon’s 36 counties would be moving into the “extreme risk” category due to rising COVID cases. Under the state’s emergency plan, that means several businesses in those counties now face curtailing operations or shutting down altogether – yet again.
Following a decade of robust population growth, Oregon will receive a new congressional seat for the first time in 40 years, the U.S. Census Bureau announced on Monday.
The latest COVID-19 stimulus package extends the tax credit for employers who voluntarily provide emergency paid sick leave and emergency family medical leave under the Family First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). How does this actually work in practice?