Press Releases

September 04, 2018

Merkley, Wyden Announce Millions of Dollars in Affordable Housing Support in Oregon

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced more than $2.7 million for new Section 811 Housing Choice Vouchers that will assist people with disabilities in accessing affordable housing and an array of supportive services. "These vouchers allow public housing authorities to better serve Oregonians with disabilities," Merkley said. "As communities in Oregon and across the nation face their biggest housing affordability crises in decades-with rents … Continue Reading


August 29, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Urge Court to Reinstate Net Neutrality Rules, Restore Equal Access to Internet

Washington, D.C. -U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week joined their colleagues in filing a brief with the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals to challenge the Federal Communication Commission's (FCC) December 2017 decision to eliminate net neutrality rules. "In sum, the FCC's reclassification decision in its 2017 Order is based entirely in the misuse of language," the members of Congress wrote in their amicus brief. "It is divorced from the practical realities that supported the FCC's … Continue Reading


August 29, 2018

Wyden Bill to Require Paper Ballots, Strengthen Election Security Gains Support from Sanders, Harris, ACLU

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today announced the addition of Sens. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Kamala Harris, D-Calif., as cosponsors to his bill to strengthen election security and require paper ballots, as well as an endorsement of the bill by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). The Protecting American Votes and Elections (PAVE) Act of 2018 requires the use of paper ballots and "risk-limiting" audits for all federal elections, ensuring that election results have not … Continue Reading


August 28, 2018

Wyden Introduces Clean Air Refugee Assistance Act

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today introduced legislation that would help people forced to seek shelter from wildfire smoke when it reaches unhealthy levels in communities throughout Oregon and the West. Wyden's Clean Air Refugee Assistance Act of 2018 would allow those seeking temporary shelter from wildfire smoke to apply for relief under a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) program that covers temporary lodging for people who can't immediately return home after a … Continue Reading


August 27, 2018

Merkley, Wyden Announce Major Grant for Underserved Youth in Portland

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced a five-year, nearly $28 million U.S. Department of Education grant to Self Enhancement, Inc. will serve more than 7,000 underserved students and families in Portland. "When I was a child, my father took me to the doors of the schoolhouse and told me that if I worked hard, I could do just about anything, because we live in America," Merkley said. "That is the promise of our nation. But all too often, that … Continue Reading


August 23, 2018

Merkley, Wyden Announce Continued Funding to Train National Guard to Fight Wildfires

WASHINGTON, D.C. - As wildfires continue to blaze across Oregon, Oregon's U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley, who serves on the Senate Appropriations Committee, and Sen. Ron Wyden today announced that the Department of Defense 2019 appropriations bill includes $7 million to train National Guard members to fight wildfires. The bill passed the Senate floor today. "I've met with the people on the front lines of these serious wildfires, and they say the hundreds of National Guard members have been a huge … Continue Reading


August 23, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Bill Aimed at Reducing Racial Disparities in Maternal Mortality

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today introduced a bill aimed at reducing significant racial disparities in maternal mortality and morbidity. The Oregon senators joined with a dozen colleagues introducing the Maternal Care Access and Reducing Emergencies (CARE) Act, in response to statistics showing the United States is one of only 13 countries where the maternal mortality rate is worse than it was 25 years ago. For African-American women, the risk of death from … Continue Reading


August 22, 2018

Wyden Presses for Comprehensive Approach to Address Threat of Wildfires to Crooked River Ranch

Washington, D.C. -U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., said today at a hearing on Crooked River Ranch that the central Oregon wilderness area needs action urgently to reduce the devastating potential of wildfire. Wyden's concerns come as the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee today considered a House bill introduced by U.S. Representative Greg Walden, R-Ore., about the dangers posed by wildfires to Crooked River Ranch. "I have spent my time in Congress leading the charge to protect … Continue Reading


August 22, 2018

Wyden Introduces Housing Affordability Bills

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today introduced two bills that would create new tax credits to help first-time homebuyers and middle-income renters. Both pieces of legislation aim to provide a comprehensive affordable housing package in tandem with the low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC), a tool Wyden has long supported that's helped to finance construction of affordable rental units. "Repairing the country's housing policy to help people in Oregon and nationwide afford a place to … Continue Reading


August 22, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Announce $5.2 Million Grant for Redmond Airport

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that Redmond's airport will get a $5.2 million federal grant to boost airplane parking capacity and make other improvements. "Central Oregon residents and businesses deserve an airport prepared to meet their travel needs and to handle growth in commerce and visitors attracted to the region by recreation and other opportunities," Wyden said. "Steady investment in infrastructure is essential for economic growth, and these … Continue Reading


August 21, 2018

Wyden Introduces Broadband Bill to Help Small Ports

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today introduced a bill to help small ports in Oregon and nationwide get federal loans that would improve their broadband coverage, helping them to grow economically and ensuring they have real-time access to weather updates. Wyden's bill would add small ports to the priority list for applications to the Agriculture Department's Rural Utility Service broadband access loan program, which funds construction and improvement of internet infrastructure for … Continue Reading


August 21, 2018

Wyden Bill to Require Paper Ballots, Strengthen Election Security Gains Support of Schatz, Booker, Blumenthal, Major Voting Rights Groups

Washington, D.C. - In a show of growing momentum to tackle threats to American election systems, U.S. Sen Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today announced the addition of Sens. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., as cosponsors to his bill to strengthen election security and require paper ballots, as well as endorsement for the bill by two major voting rights groups. The Protecting American Votes and Elections (PAVE) Act of 2018 requires the use of paper ballots and … Continue Reading


August 16, 2018

Wyden and Agriculture Department Announce Plan to Streamline Cleanup of Hazardous Fuels, Reduce Wildfire Risk

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today joined U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and Forest Service Chief Vicki Christiansen to announce a new plan for the Forest Service to address the hazardous fuels backlog contributing to devastating wildfires in Oregon and the West. The report follows Wyden's request during an Energy and Natural Resources hearing earlier this year that the Forest Service outline a timely plan to address the 80 million acres of … Continue Reading


August 15, 2018

Common Cause Endorses Wyden Bill Requiring Paper Ballots, Election Security

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today announced the endorsement of his election security bill by the grassroots voting rights group Common Cause. "With state election systems facing constant cyber threats, this legislation would institute the most critical safeguards needed to defend against sophisticated cyberattacks," said Susannah Goodman, the Director of the Election Security program at Common Cause. "Under this bill, states would be able to detect AND recover from an … Continue Reading


August 10, 2018

Oregon delegation calls on Trump administration to back down on efforts to restrict workers’ rights

Washington, D.C. - Members of the Oregon congressional delegation, including United States Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, and Representatives Suzanne Bonamici, Peter DeFazio, Earl Blumenauer and Kurt Schrader today called on the Trump administration to drop a proposed rule that would unjustifiably restrict home care workers' ability to form unions and collectively bargain for higher wages, better working conditions, expanded benefits, and new training opportunities. The letter, sent to … Continue Reading


August 03, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Ask for Updated Wildfire Impact Study in Oregon

WASHINGTON- Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today asked Travel Oregon to update its 2017 wildfire study to capture the additional impact of this year's wildfires on the normally robust outdoor recreation and tourism economy in Oregon. The senators said the agency's previous research on the impact of the 2017 wildfires was very helpful and that an update incorporating this year's wildfires affecting the Rogue and Deschutes Rivers would help raise awareness of the more recent wildfires on the … Continue Reading


August 03, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Legislation to Protect Vulnerable National Forests

Washington, D.C. - Oregon Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week introduced legislation to permanently protect the nation's most pristine federal forests from reckless and inappropriate development that threatens the supply of clean drinking water and critical habitats for endangered species. "The Trump administration continues to use every tool in its arsenal to undermine environmental protections for America's public lands," Wyden said. "This bill will safeguard our national forests … Continue Reading


August 03, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Resolution to Protect Fuel Economy Standards, Lower Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week joined their colleagues in introducing a resolution to protect states' rights to set their own fuel and greenhouse gas emission standards. "While the Trump administration flippantly ignores the clear dangers of climate change, states like Oregon are leading the way with bold action to ensure an efficient, low-carbon energy future," Wyden said. "This Trump decision is nothing short of an attack on states' freedom to … Continue Reading


August 02, 2018

Wyden, Paul Request Investigation of “Technical Irregularities” in NSA Metadata Program

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., today asked a government watchdog to investigate the circumstances that led the National Security Agency to delete hundreds of millions of telephone records, following the discovery the agency improperly received records. "When Congress passed the USA FREEDOM Act and ended the bulk collection of Americans' phone records, it expected that mass surveillance would be replaced by a carefully controlled system that only … Continue Reading


August 02, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Seek Federal Disaster Declaration for Sherman, Wasco and Jefferson counties

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today asked the U.S. Agriculture Department to designate Sherman, Wasco and Jefferson counties as agricultural disaster areas in the wake of recent wildfires. The Oregon senators' request came in a letter to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue in support of the same request by Oregon Gov. Kate Brown. "As you are well aware, having worked with us over the years on wildfire funding, the effects of fires can be devastating on these rural … Continue Reading

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