Press Releases

June 21, 2023

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Legislation to Improve Water Access for Agriculture and Conservation as West Continues to Face Drought

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., today reintroduced the Water for Conservation and Farming Act to help communities in Oregon and across the West suffering from ongoing drought. Their bill will improve water access for agriculture and conservation by funding projects that improve dam safety, create more resilient watersheds and benefit agricultural and urban water users.  “On this first day of summer and at a time when the nation … Continue Reading


June 21, 2023

Wyden, Lee and Durbin Introduce PRESS Act to Protect Reporters’ First Amendment Rights Against Government Surveillance

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., today  introduced bipartisan, bicameral legislation to protect reporters and journalists against unnecessary government surveillance that makes it harder to hold the government accountable and harms reporters’ First Amendment rights.  The senators introduced the Protect Reporters from Exploitive State Spying (PRESS) Act in response to multiple examples, in both … Continue Reading


June 20, 2023

Merkley, Wyden, Bonamici and Blumenauer Announce $2.5 Million to Expand Oregon Solar Energy Workforce

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden and Representatives Suzanne Bonamici and Earl Blumenauer announced today that the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is awarding two Oregon workforce development and training centers a combined total of $2.5 million. The funding will be used to expand the solar energy workforce in underserved and underrepresented communities, as well as create career pathways with thousands of good-paying jobs. "This news is a win-win for … Continue Reading


June 20, 2023

Wyden, Merkley Announce More than $50 Million to Grant County and Beyond for Rural Broadband Infrastructure

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that two organizations have earned $50 million in federal loans and grants for high-speed rural internet projects in Grant County and beyond. "Oregonians need broadband access so all communities can have modern access to jobs, education and telehealth opportunities that depend on high-speed internet," Wyden said, who has long championed expanding broadband access to rural and underserved areas, including pushing the … Continue Reading


June 16, 2023

Wyden, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to End Economic Racial Discrimination

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden said today that he and Senate colleagues have introduced legislation that would protect individuals from racial discrimination and foster economic inclusion. The Economic Inclusion Civil Rights Act would restore and strengthen Section 1981 of the Civil Rights Act of 1866, addressing the erosion of Section 1981's original guarantees by adopting a motivation test, allowing for disparate impact claims, and expanding protection to a broader array of … Continue Reading


June 16, 2023

Wyden, Merkley: McMinnville, Gold Beach Airports Secure Nearly $850,000 Collectively for Improvements

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced the McMinnville Municipal Airport has secured a $450,000 federal grant and the Gold Beach Municipal Airport has earned a $396,459 federal grant. "These federal investments support quality airports for Oregonians living and working in both communities, and counting on these facilities for the health of their economies as well as safety in times of emergency," Wyden said. "I'm gratified these funds are heading to small … Continue Reading


June 16, 2023

Merkley, Wyden Announce $3.5 Million for Brookings Harbor Wastewater Treatment Plant

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced today that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is awarding the Port of Brookings Harbor $3.5 million for a community-initiated project for a wastewater treatment plant to support a sustainable future for the Port's fish processing industry and promote economic growth in the region. "Reliable infrastructure is critical to fish processing facilities up and down the Oregon coast,"?said Merkley, Chair of the … Continue Reading


June 16, 2023

Wyden, Merkley, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Cut Taxes for Working Families

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley said today that they and Senate colleagues have introduced legislation that would cut taxes for working families in Oregon and nationwide by expanding the Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit. "When Democrats expanded the Child Tax Credit and the Earned Income Tax Credit in 2021, 3.7 million children were lifted out of poverty, providing families in Oregon and all around the country some much-needed financial breathing room … Continue Reading


June 16, 2023

Wyden, Merkley: Oregon Counties to Receive More Than $27 Million in PILT Funds

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley said today that all 36 Oregon counties will receive more than $27 million collectively this year from the federal Payments in Lieu of Taxes program that helps to cover the costs of important local services. "This annual federal investment in communities throughout Oregon and nationwide supports quality schools, reliable roads and stable public safety with both firefighting and law enforcement," Wyden said. "These vital resources are … Continue Reading


June 16, 2023

Wyden, Merkley, Colleagues Reintroduce Legislation to Codify Right to Contraception, Safeguard 60 Years of Settled Precedent

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley said today they and colleagues have reintroduced legislation that would codify and strengthen the right to contraception in Oregon and nationwide. "Right-wing extremists have made their agenda painfully clear: they will not rest until they have control over women's bodies, including the right to access safe medication," Wyden said. "For many Americans, birth control is a part of a basic health regimen. The Right to Contraception Act … Continue Reading


June 15, 2023

EU Restrictions on AI Emotion Detection Products

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., issued the following statement on the European Union’s proposed restrictions on artificial intelligence-powered emotion detection products: “Your facial expressions, eye movements, tone of voice and the way you walk are terrible ways to judge who you are or what you’ll do in the future. Yet millions and millions of dollars are being funneled into developing emotion-detection AI based on bunk science. I’ve … Continue Reading


June 15, 2023

Merkley, Wyden Introduce Legislation to Reauthorize Deschutes River Conservancy

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced the introduction of the Deschutes River Conservancy Reauthorization Act. This critical legislation would reauthorize the Deschutes River Conservancy's (DRC) eligibility to receive federal funding for water quality and conservation projects-efforts critical to the restoration of wildlife and reducing agricultural runoff in Central Oregon rivers. Founded in 1996, DRC initially focused on grazing and timber … Continue Reading


June 15, 2023

Merkley, Wyden Announce $51 Million Coming to Oregon for High-Speed Internet Access

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has approved a total of $51,024,671 in combined loans and grants for deploying fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) networks in Wasco County and Clackamas County to provide high-speed internet to over 9,000 community members, business, and farms. "Reliable and affordable broadband has become more crucial than ever to the success of our workforce, students, and … Continue Reading


June 15, 2023

Wyden Secures Historic Declassification Reform Legislation, Prohibition on the Denial of Security Clearances for Past Cannabis Use, Protections for Intelligence Community Whistleblowers

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., secured key provisions that reform the country’s broken classification and declassification system, prohibit the denial of security clearances for potential intelligence community employees based solely on past cannabis use, and protect Intelligence Community whistleblowers, in the 2024 Intelligence Authorization Act that passed the Senate Intelligence Committee Wednesday afternoon. Wyden, a senior member of the Intelligence … Continue Reading


June 15, 2023

Wyden, Merkley, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Establish Dental Care Pilot Program for Veterans with Chronic Health Conditions

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley said today they and Senate colleagues have introduced legislation that would establish a new pilot program to provide comprehensive dental care to veterans in Oregon and nationwide diagnosed with diabetes and coronary artery disease. Funded for four years, the program would also study the health outcomes and cost effectiveness of such care, as well as provide loan reimbursement opportunities for qualified dental care professionals … Continue Reading


June 14, 2023

Wyden, Lummis, Whitehouse, Hagerty, Heinrich and Rubio Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Protect Americans’ Data from Unfriendly Foreign Nations, Bar TikTok Employees in China From Accessing U.S. Information

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Sen. Cynthia Lummis, R-Wyo., today introduced legislation to protect Americans’ data from being exploited by unfriendly foreign nations, and apply tough criminal and civil penalties to prevent employees of foreign corporations like TikTok from accessing U.S. data from abroad. The Protecting Americans’ Data from Foreign Surveillance Act of 2023 is co-sponsored by Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., Sen. Bill Hagerty, R-Tenn, … Continue Reading


June 14, 2023

Wyden, Warren Call on Justice Department to Closely Scrutinize PGA Tour-LIV-Saudi Investment Fund Golf Merger for Potential Antitrust Violations

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) said today they have sent a letter to the Justice Department, raising serious concerns about the deal announced between the PGA Tour and the Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund to consolidate global golf-related business, including LIV Golf. In their letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland and Jonathan Kanter, Assistant Attorney General for the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice, Wyden and … Continue Reading


June 13, 2023

Wyden, Colleagues Urge the Biden Administration to Release Guidelines for Spending Unused COVID Relief Funds for Infrastructure, Disaster Relief

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden said today that he and Senate colleagues are urging top federal officials to speed up the release of guidance urgently needed by state and local governments on what pandemic relief expenses qualify are eligible for critical infrastructure and disaster relief projects in Oregon and nationwide before these funds expire. "By leveraging these resources effectively, state and local governments can not only address the immediate impacts of the pandemic but … Continue Reading


June 13, 2023

Wyden, Colleagues Continue Fight to Improve Mental Health Services for Students

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden said today that he and Senate colleagues have reintroduced legislation that would strengthen school-based mental health services for students in kindergarten through 12th grade. The Mental Health Services for Students Act would help schools in Oregon and nationwide partner with local mental health providers to establish on-site mental health services for students. The bill would also provide training for school personnel on how to recognize, assist … Continue Reading


June 13, 2023

Wyden, Merkley: More than $1.2 Million to Oregon to Advance Wood Product Innovation in Resilient, Sustainable Construction Materials

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced the U.S. Forest Service has awarded Oregon more than $1.2 million to support wood products innovation in Oregon's manufacturing facilities and develop markets for innovative uses of mass timber and renewable wood energy. Projects also help to restore healthy forests and reduce wildfire risk. "These federal investments in our state's world-renowned wood products are a huge win for Oregon that will lead to construction … Continue Reading

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