Press Releases

June 23, 2004

Wyden Wins Approval on Amendment to Keep Hopper Dredges Working in Pacific Ports

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today won passage of his amendment to eliminate artificial restrictions on the operation of the two Northwest hopper dredges, as the restrictions do not save taxpayer dollars and in fact have led to inadequate maintenance of Pacific ports. The Wyden amendment, approved today by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, directs the Secretary of the Army instead to operate the dredges to the maximum extent practicable and in the manner … Continue Reading

June 23, 2004

Wyden Amendment Protects Economic Development Projects in Oregon's Small Communities

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today won approval of an amendment to keep Oregon's distressed and rural communities from losing economic development opportunities because of burdensome financial requirements recently imposed by the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA). Earlier this year EDA informed communities that, beginning immediately, they would need to raise $22 in private funds for every $1 they requested in government funds - a significant increase in the … Continue Reading

June 23, 2004

Wyden, Smith Securing Over $100 Million for Oregon Defense Projects

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) today announced that the Senate Appropriations Committee has approved at least $103.5 million in funding for defense-related projects in Oregon. These funds are now included in the FY2005 Defense spending bill, which must now be approved by the full Senate."This funding for Oregon nanotech and other cutting edge … Continue Reading

June 21, 2004

Frist, Wyden Tackle Childhood Obesity with Legislation to Empower Kids, Schools

Washington, DC - U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) and Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today introduced legislation to address the fast-growing problem of obesity among American youth. The "Childhood Obesity Reduction Act" would encourage school-aged children to increase their physical activity and make better nutritional choices by promoting school and community-based activities to improve children's health. "Obesity is one of the biggest public health threats facing … Continue Reading

June 21, 2004

Wyden-Smith Bill on Bend Pine Nursery Approved by House of Representatives

Washington, DC - Legislation authored by U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) to set the price for the Bend Pine Nursery at $3.5 million - saving local taxpayers $2.3 million - was approved today by the U.S. House of Representatives. A vote on S. 1848 is the final legislative step in a years-long effort to transfer the Pine Nursery from the U.S. Forest Service to the Bend Metro Parks and Recreation District at a reasonable cost for the community. The Wyden-Smith bill won … Continue Reading

June 17, 2004

Wyden obtains Energy Dept. commitment to meet maximum cleanup standards forHanford Nuclear Waste Tanks

Washington, DC U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today obtained a commitment from the U.S. Department of Energy that the agency will not attempt to weaken standards for cleaning up nuclear waste in tanks at Hanford, Wash. Under questioning from Wyden, Assistant Secretary of Energy for Environmental Management Jessie Roberson said that an Energy Department proposal to leave 10 percent of existing waste in the Hanford tanks far more than the one percent currently allowed under legal agreements is … Continue Reading

June 17, 2004

Wyden, Smith Announce more than $6.2 Million for Oregon Counties

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) announced that today, 34 Oregon counties will receive payments totaling $6,245,153 as part of the federal government's Payment In Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program. The PILT program is designed to compensate local communities for tax revenue lost because of nontaxable federal land in their counties. "It is critical for the federal government to provide the proper amount of funding to communities that support federally … Continue Reading

June 16, 2004

Wyden Legislation Will Target Offshore Outsourcing

Washington, DC - Companies that outsource American jobs would lose tax benefits, and outsourced service sector and technology employees would for the first time see training and income relief, under legislation introduced today by U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.). The "Keep American Jobs at Home Act" would eliminate tax deductions for businesses that ship American jobs overseas, provide wage insurance and training assistance for service sector workers whose jobs have been shipped overseas, and … Continue Reading

June 14, 2004

GAO Releases Smith-Wyden Requested Report on Pacific Groundfish

Washington, DC Today, U.S. Senators Gordon Smith and Ron Wyden announced the release of a General Accounting Office (GAO) report, Pacific Groundfish: Continued Efforts Needed to Improve Reliability of Stock Assessments. In December 2002, Smith and Wyden requested the investigation into the reliability of the data being used by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to conduct stock assessments on the multi-species Pacific groundfish complex. Stock assessments provide estimates of the … Continue Reading

June 01, 2004

Forest Service Agrees to Wyden Request to Split Biscuit Plan

Washington, DC Today, the Forest Service agreed to pursue U.S. Senator Ron Wydens proposal to split its salvage plans (Records of Decision) in the Biscuit fire area so some salvage can proceed while more controversial plans are likely to be contested in the courts.In April of this year, Wyden wrote U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman (text follows) asking that the Biscuit salvage plan be broken down to three separate proposals one each for matrix, Late Successional Reserves (LSRs), and … Continue Reading

May 28, 2004

Wyden, Smith Applaud Federal Waiver to Aid Oregon Nursing Homes

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) today applauded the granting of a waiver from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to help Oregon improve its nursing home industry. The waiver will allow Oregon to provide better Medicaid reimbursements to the state's nursing homes and to attract additional Medicaid matching funds. Increases in rates will be used to enhance working conditions for employees and improve the quality of care they provide to … Continue Reading

May 26, 2004

Wyden praises 9th Circuit decision to maintain Oregon's Death with Dignity law

Portland, OR U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today praised the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit's ruling upholding Oregon's Death with Dignity law. Today's ruling thwarts U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft's appeal of an April 2002 U.S. District Court ruling that also upheld Oregon's law, which has faced serious opposition since being approved by Oregon voters in 1994 and again in 1997.Wyden has twice defeated Congressional efforts to overturn Oregon's physician assisted suicide law and … Continue Reading

May 20, 2004

Senate Agriculture Committee extends pilot summer lunch program for kids to Oregon

Washington, D.C. At the request of U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.), the U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee has extended the Lugar Summer Food Pilot Program to include Oregon. The pilot program increases the availability of food to children who received free or reduced-priced meals during the school year but who cannot access such meals during the summer months.We cant allow hungry children to slip through the cracks for even a couple of months, Wyden said. With this … Continue Reading

May 19, 2004

Wyden Placing "Hold" on FTC Nominee Deborah Majoras

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) today announced his intention to place a "hold" on the nomination of Deborah Majoras to become Chair of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Wyden, who has called on the FTC in the current and previous Administrations to take action to protect consumers from high gasoline prices, received no indication from Majoras that under her leadership the agency would take any steps to end numerous and well-documented anti-competitive practices … Continue Reading

May 13, 2004

Senators Hail EPA Inspector General's Decision to Review Administration's Mercury Rule

WASHINGTON, DC -- U.S. Sens. Jim Jeffords, I -Vt., Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt., Joe Lieberman, D-Ct., Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-NY., Barbara Boxer, D-Ca., Tom Carper, D-De., and Ron Wyden, D-Or., today hailed the decision by the EPA Inspector General Nikki Tinsley to review the process in which EPA formulated its December proposed rule to regulate mercury emissions from electric utilities.In an April 12 letter, the seven Senators asked the Inspector General to examine serious concerns with how the … Continue Reading

May 12, 2004

Wyden, Lott Support 9/11 Families' Call to Declassify Entire Commission Report

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Trent Lott (R-Miss.) today called on the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, more commonly known as the "9/11 Commission," to declassify and make public all sections of the Commission's upcoming report on the 2001 terrorist attacks on New York and the Pentagon. Wyden and Lott, members of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, made the request after speaking with leaders of the 9/11 victims' families groups … Continue Reading

May 07, 2004

Wyden calls for full wildfire prevention funding for Healthy Forests Restoration Act

Washington, D.C. Speaking from the floor of the U.S. Senate today, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden called on the House-Senate Budget conference committee to fully fund hazardous fuels reduction projects under the Healthy Forests Restoration Act (HFRA). Wyden successfully spearheaded a $343 million budget amendment in March to fully fund the law, but rumors circulating on Capitol Hill suggest that the Budget conference committee plans to eliminate this funding, even though it received unanimous … Continue Reading

May 07, 2004

Senators: Heavy Filling of Strategic Petroleum Reserve Drives up Gas Prices

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and twenty-nine colleagues in the U.S. Senate today called on the Bush Administration to, at a minimum, slow the filling of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR). The Senators cited recent reports that filling the SPR at a very high rate contributes to higher crude oil and gasoline prices. In a letter to U.S. Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham, the senators questioned why the administration has sped filling the SPR to 300,000 barrels per day, … Continue Reading

May 06, 2004

Wyden, Graham Legislation Would Expand McCain-Feingold Accountability Rules for Campaign Advertising

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) today unveiled their bipartisan legislation to make candidates for federal office take more explicit personal responsibility for ads on the Internet, in print or in prerecorded phone calls referring directly to the candidate's opponent. The Political Candidate Personal Responsibility Act of 2004 follows Wyden's original "Stand by Your Ad" provision on which current accountability rules for TV and radio ads … Continue Reading

May 05, 2004

Portland to Receive $8 Million for Homeland Security

Washington, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) today announced that the Oregon Department of State Police will receive $8,112,992 for homeland security preparedness in the Portland area. Funds are being awarded to help Portland prevent, deter, respond to, and recover from threats and incidents of terrorism. This grant is being awarded by the Urban Area Security Initiative Grant Program through the Department of Homeland Security's Office for Domestic Preparedness. … Continue Reading

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