Governor Brown Signs Kaylee’s Law

A proposed law, named after Kaylee Sawyer, a Bend-woman murdered in 2016, was signed into law today by Governor Kate Brown.
 
Sawyer was abducted and murdered by a Central Oregon Community College security guard, and the proposed law aims to restrict the power of campus security guards, distinguish them from local law enforcement, and require mental health and background checks.
 
The law was proposed and backed by Sawyer’s family and law enforcement officials from Central Oregon and a ceremonial signing with Sawyer’s family is scheduled for the summer.

Speed Limit Bill Heads to Senate

A new bill is making its way through Salem that would allow cities, like Bend, to lower speed limits below the limits set by the state. Proponents of the bill think that slower speed could be beneficial for historic neighborhood or neighborhood with lots of car and foot traffic.
 
Bend’s representative Cheri Helt added amendments to the bill that would specifically allow Bend’s North West Crossing neighborhood to take advantage of the bill if it is passed.

Bend Activists Join National Abortion Ban Protests

Highly restrictive abortion bans have been proposed, and in some cases passed, in states across the country, reigniting the debate over abortion in recent weeks. Pro-choice activists across the country have organized protests, including one right here in Bend. Central Oregon Daily’s Anyssa Bohanan spoke with one such activist and also with an anti-abortion activist to hear both sides of the issue.

Wildfire Prevention Programs Could Lose Funding

An $80 million budget that would’ve gone toward nationwide fire prevention programs may be set back to zero after the US Forest Service announced this morning that it was planning to cut the funding.
 
Central Oregon Daily’s Anyssa Bohanan has more on what those cuts could mean for fire season here in Central Oregon.

HB 3427 Passes After Democrats Strike a Deal with Senate Republicans

State lawmakers in Salem have confirmed with Central Oregon Daily that Senate Republicans negotiated a deal to return to the Senate floor on Monday for a discussion and vote on a new tax bill in exchange for Senate Democrats dropping high-profile bills on vaccine exemptions and gun safety.
 
The Senate convened on Monday afternoon, and voted on House Bill 3427, also known as the Student Success Act, a new business tax to bring in revenue for education. The bill passed 17 to 11. It now Heads to Governor Kate Brown’s desk, where she is expected to sign the bill.
 
In exchange for providing a quorum, Senate Republicans asked Democrats to keep House Bill 3063 and Senate Bill 978 from reaching the Senate floor, effectively killing those bills during this legislative session.
 
House Bill 3063 would have removed all non-medical exemptions for vaccinations for school-age children and Senate Bill 978 was a gun-control bill that would have banned “ghost guns” assembled by 3D printers, regulated gun owners who did not secure their firearms and give gun sellers the right to not sell guns to people under 21.
 
Central Oregon Daily’s Curtis Vogel has the latest on Monday’s developments in Salem.

House Bill 3063 Passes in the House

In front of a large, and occasionally loud, audience in the gallery, the Oregon House passed HB 3063, a bill that would get rid of all non-medical exemptions for vaccines. Proponents of the bill, including Bend representative Cheri Helt, say this law is critical in order to prevent outbreaks like this year’s measles outbreak. However, opponents feel it takes the freedom of choice away from parents.
Central Oregon Daily’s Curtis Vogel has more.

State Representatives Scheduled to Vote on HB 3063

As state representatives prepare to vote on Monday on a bill to remove all non-medical exemptions when it comes to required vaccinations for school-age children, Central Oregon Daily’s Curtis Vogel sat down with five local parents to hear their concerns about mandated vaccines and why they are opposed to the bill.

History Repeats Itself: Widow of Local Holocaust Survivor Takes a Look Back

Refugees fleeing war and persecution, American politicians debating whether to allow them into our country, it sounds like today’s headlines but it was also the situation more than seventy years ago as Jews fled Europe during the Holocaust.

On the eve of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Central Oregon Daily’s Curtis Vogel talks to the widow of a longtime Bend resident, who was the lone survivor of a deadly incident that become known as the ‘Holocaust of the Sea.’