Press Releases

October 29, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Announce $4 Million in FEMA Grants for Wildfire Recovery and Infrastructure Repair

WASHINGTON, D.C. - As Oregonians continue to recover from the devastating wildfires in 2020 that destroyed entire communities in Lane County, Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced millions of dollars in grants from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that will support projects repairing infrastructure that was severely damaged by wildfire and wind. "Wildfires and intense winds caused significant damage in Lane County, where electrical systems that are … Continue Reading


October 29, 2021

Oregon Delegation Urges Fishery Disaster Declaration

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley is leading members of the Oregon delegation, including U.S. Senator Ron Wyden and U.S. Representatives Peter DeFazio, Kurt Schrader and Suzanne Bonamici, in urging the U.S. Department of Commerce to grant a catastrophic regional fishery disaster declaration for the State of Oregon, after three consecutive years of drought and changing ocean conditions have severely harmed salmon populations in the Pacific Northwest. "The value of salmon to … Continue Reading


October 29, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Announce $25 Million in Federal Funding for Emergency Recovery Efforts from COVID-19

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced $25 million in federal grants are being allocated for emergency services critical to the state's recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. "While Oregon continues its recovery from the pandemic, we cannot ignore the effects of COVID-19 on emergency personnel and their ability to provide aid and administer tests when needed," said Merkley. "I am pleased that Oregon will receive federal funding to sustain critical … Continue Reading


October 27, 2021

Wyden Cosponsors Legislation to Promote Educational Opportunities for Incarcerated Americans

Washington, D.C.- U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden said today he is cosponsoring legislation that would expand access to education for Americans in federal prisons by creating an office within the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) focused on correctional education and funding a new program to address the lack of educational opportunities now offered. "Improving educational opportunities in prison helps to reduce recidivism rates, which benefits both the community and the people returning to it with the … Continue Reading


October 26, 2021

Wyden, Colleagues Say Pentagon Timetable for Implementing Sexual Assault Reforms ‘Vague, Lax’

Washington, D.C. -U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today joined seven Senate colleagues to express disappointment with the Pentagon's proposed timeline-of up to nine years-to implement the findings of the Independent Review Commission (IRC) on Sexual Assault to combat sexual assault and harassment in the military. In a letter to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, the senators request a briefing outlining the Department of Defense's methods of execution to achieve needed reforms. "We write to express our … Continue Reading


October 25, 2021

Wyden, Merkley Seek Review of Accounting and Student Achievement Progress at Chemawa Indian School

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today asked the Inspector General for the U.S. Interior Department to answer questions about the Chemawa Indian School's accounting practices and update its 2015 review of the Salem school's policies to determine whether progress has been made to increase students' academic achievement. Wyden and Merkley's letter noted that the Office of Inspector General (OIG) released two reports in July 2015 on academic achievement and violence … Continue Reading


October 22, 2021

Wyden, Merkley statement on Senator Murray and Governor Inslee establishing a joint federal-state process on Snake River salmon recovery

U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today issued the following statement in response to U.S. Senator Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Washington Governor Jay Inslee announcing a joint federal-state process on salmon recovery in the Columbia River Basin and the Pacific Northwest: "Ensuring the long-term viability of the Columbia River Basin is essential to the Pacific Northwest and all who live here. We look forward to working with Senator Murray and Governor Inslee as they build on previous … Continue Reading


October 22, 2021

Wyden Statement on FTC Report on Big Cable Selling Americans’ Personal Data

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today issued the following statement in response to the Federal Trade Commission report documenting how Big Cable companies sold detailed personal information about their customers' browsing history to advertisers: "If Congress needed any more proof that America desperately needs a consumer privacy law, the Federal Trade Commission's report about internet service providers' rampant abuse of their customers' private, personal browsing information should be … Continue Reading


October 22, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Announce $19 Million in Federal Grants to Assist Wildfire Recovery in Oregon

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced that federal grants totaling nearly $19 million will come to Oregon to assist with recovery efforts from last year's wildfire disasters. "During my visit to Santiam Canyon and other areas in the aftermath of their devastating wildfires, it was clear the damages to our forests, rural neighborhoods, and community infrastructure needed urgent attention," said Merkley. "I am pleased that Oregon will receive … Continue Reading


October 21, 2021

ENR Committee Holds Hearing on Wyden's National Prescribed Fire Act

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today made the case for how his National Prescribed Fire Act would reduce wildfire risks in Oregon and nationwide, during a U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the bill and other pending legislation. Witnesses on behalf of the Biden administration voiced support for the legislation as a key tool to reduce fire risks nationwide. "These are not your grandfather's fires. They are bigger, they are hotter, they are more … Continue Reading


October 21, 2021

Wyden Urges Federal Review of Pharmacy Closures

Washington, D.C. - Citing the recent announcement by Bi-Mart that it's begun closing 56 pharmacies in Oregon and the Northwest, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden this week urged the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to review pharmacy closures nationwide in the last five years with a focus on how fees imposed by Medicare Part D plans and middlemen known as pharmacy benefit managers are driving those closures -- many of which are in rural communities. Wyden noted in his letter to … Continue Reading


October 20, 2021

Wyden, Van Hollen, Blumenthal, Durbin and Markey Ask FCC to Act on National Security Risks from Foreign Telecommunications Services Companies

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., with Sens. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., asked the Federal Communications Commission to take action in response to national security risks posed by foreign companies that manage and service U.S. wireless phone networks. Although the U.S. government has responded forcefully to risks from Chinese hardware manufacturers, including Huawei and ZTE, it has not yet accounted for … Continue Reading


October 19, 2021

Wyden, Merkley, DeFazio, Bonamici Call for Expanded Agricultural Assistance to Oregon & Washington Farmers

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and U.S. Reps. Peter DeFazio and Suzanne Bonamici today called on the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to take all statutory eligibilities into account when distributing the $10 billion in aid to agricultural producers hit hard by extreme heat, drought, and wildfires this summer. The letter to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack from the Oregon lawmakers as well as 12 of their colleagues from Washington noted that $10 billion in … Continue Reading


October 19, 2021

Wyden Statement at ENR Hearing on the Nomination of Oregonian Chuck Sams to lead the National Park Service

It is a pleasure to be able to introduce Chuck Sams, of Oregon, President Biden's nominee to be the next Director of the National Park Service. The National Park Service is not all about pretty places and photo ops. As Director, Chuck Sams will be responsible for an organization of more than 22,000 employees and almost 222,000 volunteers at National Park Units in every state in the country generating almost $40 billion for our national economy. The Park Service does it all - from education … Continue Reading


October 19, 2021

Wyden Statement at ENR Hearing on the Nomination of Oregonian Chuck Sams to lead the National Park Service

It is a pleasure to be able to introduce Chuck Sams, of Oregon, President Biden's nominee to be the next Director of the National Park Service. The National Park Service is not all about pretty places and photo ops. As Director, Chuck Sams will be responsible for an organization of more than 22,000 employees and almost 222,000 volunteers at National Park Units in every state in the country generating almost $40 billion for our national economy. The Park Service does it all - from education … Continue Reading


October 19, 2021

Wyden, Merkley: Seven Candidates To Be Interviewed For Job As U.S. Attorney for Oregon

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that seven Oregonians will be interviewed by the selection committee assembled by the senators to be the next U.S. Attorney for Oregon. The seven candidates under consideration by the selection committee are as follows, in alphabetical order: Craig Gabriel John Hummel Joseph Huynh Vivek Kothari Vamshi Reddy Rachel Sowray Natalie Wight Anybody who wants to weigh in with the selection committee about any of … Continue Reading


October 19, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Announce Federal Grants to Assist Oregon Tribes with Water Quality and Wetlands Restoration

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced that several major grants will be going from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to help tribal communities in Oregon improve water quality and restore wetland habitats. Merkley chairs the Senate's Interior Appropriations Subcommittee, which funds the EPA and the grant programs that awarded this funding to Oregon tribes. "Nothing is more critical to the health and vitality of a community than … Continue Reading


October 14, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Announce $2 Million Grant to Oregon State University for Offshore Wind Research

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced today Oregon State University will receive a $2 million grant from the Department of Energy to study the impact of offshore winds on the environment. "Moving rapidly to a clean energy future requires having the best and brightest minds provide robust research on ways to make that vision a reality," said Merkley. "I am pleased OSU will use this grant to lead efforts on offshore wind development research and find … Continue Reading


October 13, 2021

Wyden Raises Concerns about New "Fast Tracks" Pass Pricing Out Families at Mt. Bachelor

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today expressed concerns in a letter to the parent company of Mt. Bachelor that the introduction of the "Fast Tracks" pass at the Central Oregon ski resort will result in inequitable access to public lands. "Given the serious concerns this policy raises about equitable access to the public lands on which Mt. Bachelor operates under its U.S. Forest Service Special Use permit, I request that POWDR abandon its plans to adopt this new pass system," Wyden … Continue Reading


October 13, 2021

Oregon Delegation Requests Answers on Reported Mistreatment of Oregon National Guard Servicemembers

WASHINGTON - U.S. Representative Peter DeFazio (OR-04), along with Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, and Representatives Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Kurt Schrader (OR-05), and Suzanne Bonamici (OR-01) today requested answers on alleged mistreatment of Oregon National Guard (ORNG) servicemembers deployed to assist with the state's COVID response. In a letter to Oregon Governor Kate Brown and Major General Michael E. Stencel, the lawmakers called attention to reports they've received from ORNG … Continue Reading

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