Category Archives: Bates

A successful session, overall

As my colleagues in the Senate and I prepare to work through the weekend to wrap up this legislative session, I’m proud to say that much has been accomplished already in 2013. We’ve passed a historic K-12 budget, brokered an agreement for insurers to pay for treatment of autism, reinvested in public safety, expanded health [...]

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Budget delivers for schools

For years, school districts in Southern Oregon and across the state have been forced to address budget shortfalls by shortening the length of the school year, laying off teachers, cutting art, music and after-school activities, and cramming students into larger classes. Needless to say, my No. 1 goal this session has been to increase funding [...]

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Veterans have earned a tuition break

I served in Cam Ranh Bay and Da Nang in the early years of the Vietnam War. When I returned home I wanted to attend college in the Pacific Northwest, but I was a resident of Michigan, having lived there for a short time just prior to my service. Out-of-state tuition can be prohibitively expensive, [...]

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Drone law protects civil liberty

It’s usually in news stories about foreign conflicts that we hear about the use of drones, aircraft that can be automated or remotely controlled by someone located thousands of miles away. It might surprise you, then, that in recent years drones have become much more common right here in Oregon. Many folks — including myself [...]

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‘Buy Oregon’ program supports small businesses

When I have the opportunity for a conversation with my neighbors, or to chat with patients in my medical practice, I often ask them about their priorities. A common theme emerges: Getting Southern Oregon back to work. We can do that by supporting small businesses right here in Southern Oregon. With job creation top of [...]

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Information helps parents make vaccination choices

As a doctor, I’m always surprised to hear that Oregon has the highest rate of non-medical exemptions for immunizations in the country. In some Oregon schools — including in Southern Oregon — as many as 70 percent of students have been exempted from vaccinations for non-medical reasons. To put that into perspective, to protect children [...]

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Let’s meet in the middle

Last week we called for an ‘all hands on deck’ approach to addressing our state’s budget crisis to stop teacher layoffs and cuts to classrooms.  Much has happened in Salem on budget negotiations since we wrote last week. Governor Kitzhaber made a call for action to legislators on both sides of the aisle: compromise. He [...]

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Let’s work together

It’s no secret that Oregon’s schools are in desperate need of increased funding. Reinvesting and stabilizing schools and reducing class sizes are our top priorities this session in Salem. We have a historic opportunity to reinvest in education, and we believe it’s time to embrace the proposals to make that happen. Today, Oregon has the [...]

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Oregon is getting back to work

One of our top priorities this session is getting people back to work and helping small businesses grow in our area. So we were glad to read new data from the US Department of Labor last week that showed Oregon is making strides towards a strong economy and getting Oregonians back to work. The report [...]

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Driver cards should help keep roads safer

I was proud to vote recently in favor of extending drivers cards to undocumented Oregon residents: This is a safety issue, a jobs issue, and helping more qualified drivers get to work, get to the store, and take their children to school safely is simply the right thing to do. This bill will give more [...]

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