Press Releases

April 01, 2020

Senator Wyden, Rep. Schrader Request Release of West Coast Fishery Disaster Assistance Funding

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator Ron Wyden (OR) and Representative Kurt Schrader (OR-05) led a letter to Secretary of Commerce Ross to expedite the final approval of the West Coast and Tribal Fisheries Disaster Grant. "After months of delay, it is unacceptable that Congressionally appropriated disaster relief funds for West Coast fisheries still have not been released by the Department of Commerce," said Senator Wyden and Rep. Schrader. "We are writing to request assistance in expediting the … Continue Reading


March 31, 2020

Wyden Presses Trump Administration to Provide Guidance to Child Welfare Agencies as Nation Combats Spread of COVID-19

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore. today led colleagues in urging the Trump administration to issue national guidance for child welfare agencies that must still work to protect and support children during the COVID-19 outbreak. The child welfare system is not currently designed for the social distancing recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The senators, therefore, urged the administration to issue comprehensive guidance to states and tribes to ensure … Continue Reading


March 31, 2020

Wyden Urges Trump Administration to Address Child Care Needs of Frontline Workers

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today joined his colleagues to urge Donald Trump's Department of Health and Human Services (DHS) to take additional steps to expand child care options for health care workers and others on the frontlines responding to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. "Frontline workers are needed at their places of employment now more than ever, but in many cases do not have safe child care for their children," the senators wrote to Shannon … Continue Reading


March 30, 2020

Wyden, Merkley Announce Additional Air Tanker Availability for Wildfires

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced the U.S. Forest Service is bringing on five additional airtankers for use when needed to battle wildfires in Oregon. The additional contracts awarded by the Forest Service means the agency has 18 airtankers currently under exclusive use with the agency, each with a base period of one year and then four one-year options. In total, the agency will have up to 35 air tankers available under all available contracting … Continue Reading


March 30, 2020

Merkley, Wyden, Colleagues Plan to Introduce Legislation to Protect Oregonians’ Access to Electricity and Gas

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden, along with six of their Senate colleagues, today announced a congressional resolution urging states and utility companies to issue a moratorium on gas and electric service disconnections, late fees, reconnection fees, rate hikes, and other penalties for all consumers as a result of the ongoing national emergency caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Although various utility companies in Oregon have voluntarily committed to … Continue Reading


March 30, 2020

Wyden Calls on DeVos to Return All Garnished Federal Tax Refunds for Entire 2020 Filing Season

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., joined a group of his colleagues to call on the Department of Education to return all amounts garnished from the federal tax refunds of student loan borrowers since this year's filing season began on January 27, 2020. The administration previously announced it would halt all collection activity on certain defaulted federal student loans during the COVID-19 emergency and would retroactively return $1.8 billion that had been garnished from … Continue Reading


March 27, 2020

Wyden: Coronavirus Package Will Bring an Estimated $3.3 Billion to Unemployed Oregonians

Washington, D.C. -- U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today announced the historic expansion of unemployment insurance he worked to get into the just-passed Senate coronavirus package will work out to an estimated $3.3 billion in much-needed help this year for unemployed Oregonians. "This urgent crisis demands an urgent response and $3.3 billion for Oregon workers will help them throughout this year to pay the rent, buy groceries and cover medical expenses. That's essential assistance for workers and … Continue Reading


March 27, 2020

Merkley, Wyden, Colleagues Urge FDA to Change Discriminatory Blood Donation Policies to Combat Coronavirus Pandemic

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden, along with 15 of their Senate colleagues, are pressing the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to reverse course on discriminatory blood donor deferral policies that effectively prohibit many healthy gay and bisexual men from donating. The senators' letter to FDA Commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn comes amid a nationwide shortage of donated blood caused by the coronavirus pandemic. "We write to express our concern with the Food … Continue Reading


March 26, 2020

Wyden Urges Federal Trade Commission to Protect Seniors from Coronavirus Scams

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today urged the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to protect seniors from coronavirus-related scams. In response to the recent increase in these scams, Wyden joined a group of bipartisan senators on a letter to FTC Chairman Joseph Simons calling on the FTC to better inform seniors about coronavirus scams and assist victims in understanding their recourse options to ensure that seniors are protected from those attempting to financially exploit … Continue Reading


March 25, 2020

Wyden Welcomes Senate Passage of COVID19 Stimulus Package

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden welcomed tonight's Senate passage of the bipartisan legislative package to respond to the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic and worsened by the Trump administration's failure to ensure widespread testing in the United States. The legislation now advances to the U.S. House of Representatives for consideration. "From the start, Democrats made it clear that struggling families and small businesses must be the priority in any economic … Continue Reading


March 25, 2020

Oregon Delegation Seeks Federal Disaster Declaration for State

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, and U.S. Reps. Peter DeFazio, Earl Blumenauer, Suzanne Bonamici, Kurt Schrader and Greg Walden in a letter today to the White House supported Oregon Gov. Kate Brown's request for a major disaster declaration for the entire state as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Oregon lawmakers said in their bipartisan letter that in addition to the serious and growing health toll from the virus, that the virus' rapid spread has generated … Continue Reading


March 25, 2020

Wyden Secures Provisions in COVID-19 Stimulus Package to Help Oregon Workers and Small Businesses

Washington, D.C. -- U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today announced several provisions that will support Oregon workers and small businesses are included in the bipartisan legislative package to respond to the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. "From the start, Democrats made it clear that the priority of this stimulus package must be workers and the small businesses they support," Wyden said. "Oregon's small businesses are the backbone of our state's economy, and these provisions … Continue Reading


March 25, 2020

Wyden Announces Retention Credit To Keep Workers On The Job

Washington, D.C. - Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today announced an employee retention credit to prevent further mass layoffs is included in the bipartisan agreement to respond to the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic and the Trump administration's failure to ensure widespread testing. "Our goal is to prevent as many layoffs as possible and keep workers on the job. If workers are kept on the payroll they will be able to pay their bills and stay … Continue Reading


March 25, 2020

Wyden Announces Historic Expansion Of Unemployment Insurance

Washington, D.C. - Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today announced the inclusion of an unprecedented expansion of unemployment insurance in the bipartisan agreement to respond to the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic and the Trump administration's failure to ensure widespread testing. An expansion of unemployment insurance has been a top Democratic priority. The agreement would create a federally funded Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program, … Continue Reading


March 25, 2020

Wyden, Klobuchar Statement on Funding to Secure our Elections Included in Coronavirus Response Legislation

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., released the following statement regarding election funding included in the latest COVID-19 emergency package. "In times of crisis, the American people cannot be forced to choose between their health and exercising their right to vote. While this funding is a step in the right direction, we must enact election reforms across the country as well as secure more resources to guarantee safe and secure elections. We … Continue Reading


March 25, 2020

Merkley, Wyden Announce Nearly $2 Million in Awards to Oregon Health Centers to Boost Coronavirus Response

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), will distribute nearly $2 million in funding among 30 health centers across Oregon to help address the coronavirus crisis. "Health care professionals in every corner of our state have been working around the clock to battle the coronavirus pandemic on the frontlines," said Merkley. … Continue Reading


March 25, 2020

Oregon Delegation Calls for Expedited Approval of Local Personal Protective Equipment Manufacturing

WASHINGTON, DC [03/25/20] - Today Oregon's Congressional Delegation - Representatives Suzanne Bonamici, Peter DeFazio, Earl Blumenauer, Greg Walden, and Kurt Schrader, and Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley - called for the Trump administration to expedite and clarify the evaluation and approval processes for businesses to manufacture the personal protective equipment health care workers need to stay safe while responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Health care providers responding to COVID-19 … Continue Reading


March 24, 2020

Wyden Calls for Access to Remote Education for All Students During Coronavirus Emergency

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., joined 20 of his colleagues in urging Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Commerce Committee Chairman Roger Wicker to support additional funding in the next version of the coronavirus relief package for all K-12 students to have adequate home internet connectivity if their schools close due to the ongoing pandemic. "Children without connectivity are at risk of not only being unable to complete their homework during this pandemic, but … Continue Reading


March 24, 2020

Wyden, Merkley Raise Concerns About Harmful Medicaid Regulation

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today called on the Trump administration to withdraw a dangerous proposal that would disrupt state Medicaid financing that helps cover costs for vulnerable low-income patients. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS) proposed Medicaid Fiscal Accountability Rule (MFAR) makes complex technical changes that would limit the types of financing mechanisms states can use to pay for their non-federal share of Medicaid … Continue Reading


March 24, 2020

Merkley, Wyden Announce New Funding to Provide Meals to Low-Income Seniors

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced that Oregon will receive more than $3 million to help provide home-delivered and pre-packaged meals to low-income older adults, as communities are ordered to stay home and avoid social contact in an effort to contain the spread of the coronavirus. "The federal government must be a full partner to our states as we work to contain this virus," Merkley said. "That means looking out for our vulnerable neighbors, … Continue Reading

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