New Laws on January 1

On January 1st, a number of the new laws passed by the Legislature go into effect. Courtesy of the House Democrats, we've got a list below.

“As these laws go into effect, Oregonians will feel safer in their neighborhoods and more secure in their homes,” said House Majority Leader Dave Hunt. “Prior to 2007 session, we released a Road Map to Oregon’s Future that pledged House Democrats would take Oregon in a new direction. These bills include laws designed to protect our children, improve health care access, help our economy grow and improve government accountability. Now, with the implementation of these bills, Oregonians will see the 2007 session was one of the most productive sessions in decades.”

Of course, a large number of new laws have already gone into effect:

Key budget issues including increases in K-12 education, reinvesting in colleges, putting 100 more state troopers on Oregon Highways and creating new research centers on wave energy and biofuels went into effect with the new fiscal year in July, 2007. A number of other Road Map bills went into effect 90 days after the session ended.

Ethics and Accountability

HB 2088: Directs Secretary of State to accept reports of waste, inefficiency or abuse by state agencies, state employees or persons under contract with state agencies through any method.

SB 10: Enacts sweeping government ethics: Restricts the dollar amount of gifts officials can receive to $50; Provides stable funding for the Ethics Commission; Increases penalties for ethics violations; Places restrictions on the ability of legislators to become lobbyists and lobby their former colleagues; Improves access and ability to understand statements of economic interest filed by public officials.

Consumer Protection

HB 2513: Prohibits person from selling gift cards that expires or have a face value that declines over time or with lack of use.

SB 431: Protects Oregonians from predatory towing practices by prohibiting landlords from having motor vehicle removed from premises without notice to tenant who owns or operates vehicle except under specified circumstances.

HB 2163: Helps to prevent house fires caused by abandoned burning cigarettes by prohibiting the distribution or sell of a cigarette within this state unless the cigarette is of a variety the State Fire Marshal has determined to be firesafe.

HB 2096: Allows people living in manufactured home parks to join together to create non-profit co-op to buy land if park owner is selling for development purposes.

Civil Rights

HB 2007: Legalizes and establishes procedures for domestic partnership agreements among same sex couples.

SB 2: Prohibits discrimination against persons based on sexual orientation.

Health Care

HB 2700: Requires insurance companies to include coverage for contraceptives if they provide benefits for other drugs.

HB 2372: Ensures new mothers have a break time and a private place to express milk while at work.

HB 3103: Requires state agencies (DCBS) to review rate and fees charged by insurance companies to small businesses (under 50 employees), and to make those findings public.

HB 2213: Requires insurance companies to inform customers of expected out-of-pockets costs for medical procedures. (Some provisions of this bill take effect on July 1, 2009.)

HB 2517: Requires coverage under health insurance policy for prosthetic and orthotic devices.

HB 2635: Provides for protected family medical leave for grandparents to take care of their sick grandchildren.

HB 3093: Establishes a bill of rights of residents of long term care facilities, including the right to receive care from staff trained to meet the specific needs of residents’ disease or medical condition, and the right to receive a modified or special diet.

SB 329: The Healthy Oregon Act creates the Oregon Health Trust Board to continually look at emerging health care issues and finds ways to make Oregon’s health care system more affordable and efficient.

Veterans

HB 2208, 2237, 3009, 3201: House Democrats recognize the invaluable service that veterans provide to our country by passing this package of legislation offering emergency financial assistance, grants for part-time study, tax relief, educational benefits and elimination of red tape around homeownership.

Children

HB 2872: Bans youth under 18 from talking on cell phone while driving. The offense is a Class D traffic violation carrying a maximum fine of $90.

HB 2843 and HB 3515: Gives law enforcement greater tools when trying to convict child internet predators. House Bill 3515 will make it a crime to solicit minors over the Internet, which will give law enforcement more power to intervene when children are at risk of online sexual predators. HB 2843 makes it a crime to furnish sexually explicit material to a child – another tool in the fight to keep kids safe in cyberspace.

HB 2179: If a child is at risk of being abused, DHS does not have to gain written permission from the suspected abuser to run a criminal background check.

Crime and Safety

Meth and Identity Theft

HB 3026: Updates meth legislation to attack problem of meth users stealing metal materials, selling the materials for scrap and using proceeds to buy meth.

SB 331 A: Creates a new crime of “organized retail theft. To be guilty of organized retail theft, the state must establish that: (1) the person stole merchandise; (2) from a mercantile establishment; (3) the person acted in concert with another person; and (4) the aggregate value of the merchandise within a 90-day period exceeds $5,000. SB 331 A also places organized retail theft within Oregon’s RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act) statute.

SB 447: Identity theft is a Class C felony punishable by a maximum of five years in prison and a $125,000 fine. Currently, it is illegal to use the personal identification of another person with the intent to deceive or defraud. “Another person” is defined as a real or an imaginary person. SB 447 adds “living or deceased” to the definition of another person.

SB 464: Expands offense of identity theft by creating “aggravated identity theft,” a Class B felony. The elements of aggravated identity theft include: (1) committing identity theft 10 or more times in 180 days; (2) committing identity theft and the amount is over $10,000 in a 180-day period; (3) committing identity theft and the defendant has 10 or more pieces of identification from 10 or more different persons.

SB 331 A: Creates a new crime of “organized retail theft. To be guilty of organized retail theft, the state must establish that: (1) the person stole merchandise; (2) from a mercantile establishment; (3) the person acted in concert with another person; and (4) the aggregate value of the merchandise within a 90-day period exceeds $5,000. SB 331 A also places organized retail theft within Oregon’s RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act) statute.

Alcohol, Minors, and Drunk Driving

HB 2147: Increases the age from 17 to 20 for minors who can have driving privileges suspended for possessing alcohol.

HB 2148: Expands ORS 471.430 and makes it a Class A violation for underage persons to possess alcohol while driving a motor vehicle

HB 2149: Authorizes Court to order alcohol assessment and treatment for persons ages 18 to 20 who violate prohibitions relating to alcohol. For first-time underage offenders, the court has discretion whether to order the assessment/treatment. For repeat underage offenders, the assessment/treatment is mandatory.

HB 2774: Provides protection against those convicted of DUII by requiring an ignition interlock device on their car for one year for the first offense, two years for second or subsequent offense.

HB 2740: Creates a new crime (aggravated vehicular homicide) and expands two others (first degree manslaughter and first degree assault) to apply to situations involving persons who drive under the influence of intoxicants and who kill or seriously injury someone and such persons have previously done the same thing.

HB 2895: ORS 676.260 requires a health care provider to notify a law enforcement officer or agency within five calendar days if the provider reasonably believes that a person receiving treatment, after a motor vehicle accident in which the person was likely a driver, has a blood alcohol content of .08 or greater (as revealed by a blood test).

Note: Descriptions written by the House Democrats, though we re-arranged the order and edited headings for BlueOregon.

Comments

  • Rick Hickey (unverified)
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    An Immigrant from Saudi Arabia with a 6 month Visa can still get a License that doesn't expire for 8 years (same with Gov. new plan)just like the Terrorists of 9-11-01. Remember that we issue over 33 Million temp visas per year. Rent a Van and fill it with?

    No Employer in OR. is required to check the S.S.# presented by new Employee, even after 500+ persons were caught with a STOLEN or Forged S.S.# at Del Monte Fresh in Portland. Is your G-Ma getting a letter from IRS telling her she owes Taxes on that income for 2007 from Del Monte?

    Any one, as proven in the Robleto case, can register and Vote in Oregon, Citizenship is only a Fed law for Fed elections. How long until Sharia laws are passed? Those Islamic laws require torture to Gays, & Women can't vote, not good.

    Failed & expensive BI-Lingual education continues in Oregon. Even after a 3 yr. study by Dr. Hargett in Salem of over 1,000 Students, found an 80% failure rate after 5 years in program. Pro-assimilation structured english immersion works great in AZ., CA., MA., NH. and more. Is the extra Fed/state per diem $$$ for non-english speaking Students more important than helping the kids assimiliate? apparently.

    Police still cannot ask immigration status of crime violators, even after thousands have been Killed, Raped, Molested as a Child, Tortured, held hostage and transport drugs such as METH, Heroine, Cocaine etc. via previously Deported Illegal Aliens who are Felons. Do you think Dani Countrymans family are happy with Sanctuary laws?

    All I saw was a huge fat raise for State workers and Managers and a huge new unsustainable big chunk of money going to Schools mostly eaten up by paychecks and not to the class room and another 1,700 unsustainable state worker jobs to help the "hard working" "good for the economy" but "poor minority" Illegal aliens.

  • Jack Murray (unverified)
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    Not that I take any joy in reiterating this, but the fairness laws and equality laws (SB 2/HB 2007) don't take effect until at least February 1.

    You have a very small crowd of bigots to thank for that.

  • (Show?)

    This is the Bread and Butter stuff, and of course the hoouse leadership knows there's a lot more that needs doing, but it's sure a good start.

    The fun ones to watch for me are:

    HB 3103: Requires state agencies (DCBS) to review rate and fees charged by insurance companies to small businesses (under 50 employees), and to make those findings public.

    HB 2213: Requires insurance companies to inform customers of expected out-of-pockets costs for medical procedures. (Some provisions of this bill take effect on July 1, 2009.)

    I look forward to seeing how well the small firms have been doing on rates vs the large ones.

    So far, in this state,(if not here on Blue Oregon) progressives have yet to realize that there's a natural wedge to be driven between the Big Boys and the 90,000+ small businesses.

    If any of the power guys figure this out and quit taking their cues re business from the handful of former large corp execs that populate the capitol, we progressives will finally gain some allies on the merits of some new, carefully crafted policies.

  • Laura C (unverified)
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    Not that I take any joy in reiterating this, but the fairness laws and equality laws (SB 2/HB 2007) don't take effect until at least February 1.

    SB 2 The Oregon Equality Act still takes effect on Jan 1. This is the law which bans discrimination in employment, public accomodation and etc.

    HB 2007 The Oregon Family Fairness Act does not take effect Jan 1st due to the recent Temporary Restraining Order issued in federal court. That's the law that would have allowed for domestic partnerships.

  • Gil Johnson (unverified)
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    What I want to know is why the law banning smoking in bars and restaurants does not take effect on Jan. 1, 2008. It is appalling that service workers (and a lot of customers) have to wait until 2009 before they can breathe comfortably inside a bar.

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    Didn't know about HB 2096 (manufactured home park co-ops), which addresses a serious issue though I don't know how strongly.

    Pat, I agree with you & think this ought to be a major consideration in construction of health insurance reform proposals. Done right, they could provide insurance for small business people (& self-employed contract workers) who struggle to afford insurance for themselves, and if they have employees, to offer competitive benefits &/or meet felt desires to offer such benefits.

    However, I would also say that there are some real ideological hurdles to deal with about anti-government views that arise from sources other than the attitudes you correctly identify. Still, if Ds could gain some more traction in this group, it would be a huge thing I think.

    This is a key piece of the puzzle for reversing the R success at aligning (roughly) the top 60% against the bottom 40%, often not with much or any real benefit for the 40-70 or 75% range, as well as the tendency of some D politicians to want to mimic that approach.

  • (Show?)

    What I want to know is why the law banning smoking in bars and restaurants does not take effect on Jan. 1, 2008.

    Gil... that's actually one of the weirder stories of the 2007 Legislature. The bill was heading to a vote fairly late in the session. Just as it was about to get voted on (with a 2008 date in it), a study up in Washington State was released.

    The study found that while restaurant and tavern revenue was unharmed by a smoking ban, video poker receipts did take a small dip. (People playing video poker had to leave to smoke outside. Their trance interrupted, some percentage of them stopped gambling.)

    This new finding meant that suddenly there was a fiscal impact to the bill - gotta cut spending or raise taxes to pay for it. So, rather than upsetting the applecart of the budget (which was basically done at that point), the budgeteers decided to delay the implementation until 2009, so it could be handled in the next budget.

    (I'm doing this from memory, and wasn't there, so if I got any of the details wrong - someone please correct me.)

  • dddave (unverified)
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    "What I want to know is why the law banning smoking in bars and restaurants does not take effect on Jan. 1, 2008. Gil... that's actually one of the weirder stories of the 2007 Legislature."

    Gil, why should I change my business to accommodate you? You want me to check with you on the menu items, lighting, and music selections? Quit using the employees as a smoke screen. (get it? haha) You are not required frequent any bar, and no one is required to work at one either. Why don't we outlaw the drinking of alcohol too? How about jobs that REQUIRE driving, that is damn dangerous too? Save yourself, leave us alone.

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