Press Releases

November 04, 2021

Wyden, Merkley: $13.5 Million Headed to Seven Oregon Airports

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that more than $13.5 million from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) will be heading to airports in Medford, Eugene, Redmond, Newport, Klamath Falls, Lake County and Grant County to help them cover costs incurred during the pandemic and support rent and minimum annual guarantees for airport concessions. "Each of these airports is a crucial part of a strong infrastructure that ensures Oregonians throughout our … Continue Reading

November 04, 2021

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Bills to Reform Federal Wildfire Disaster Response

Washington, D.C. - Following another season of record-breaking wildfires in the West, U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today joined colleagues on two bills to redesign the federal government's response to wildfires and provide additional resources to ensure equity for communities experiencing natural disasters. "The climate crisis is not some distant threat. It's here, and communities in Oregon and across the West are suffering its worst impacts with regular blazing infernos that … Continue Reading

November 04, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Urge Biden to Rescind Medals for Perpetrators of Wounded Knee Massacre

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley is leading a bicameral letter, along with Senator Ron Wyden, urging President Biden to rescind the Medals of Honor awarded to soldiers involved in the Wounded Knee Massacre, when hundreds of unarmed men, women, and children were slaughtered. U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and U.S. Representative Kaiali'l Kahele (D-HI-02) co-led the letter with Merkley. On December 29, 1890, U.S. soldiers descended upon Pine Ridge Reservation in … Continue Reading

November 03, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Announce $422 Million Federal Grant to Help Oregonians Recover from Devastating 2020 Wildfires

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced that the state of Oregon will receive $422 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in an effort to help communities recover from the extreme damages caused by the 2020 wildfires. "Oregon cannot fully recover from the 2020 Labor Day wildfires without addressing underserved communities who have had difficulty rebuilding from natural disasters-especially after these fires … Continue Reading

November 03, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Introduce Bill to Support Oregon Conservation, Economic Development

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today introduced the Sutton Mountain and Painted Hills Area Wildfire Resiliency, Preservation, and Economic Enhancement Act, legislation that would establish a Sutton Mountain National Monument on tens of thousands of acres of public lands surrounding the iconic Painted Hills and popular recreational areas, including Sutton Mountain, Pat's Cabin, Priest Hole, Gable Creek, Sand Mountain and Dead Dog. The proposal, which was … Continue Reading

November 02, 2021

Wyden statement on Senate ENR Committee advancing the nomination of Chuck Sams to lead the National Park Service

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today issued the following statement after the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources voted to advance the nomination of Chuck Sams as National Park Service (NPS) Director to the Senate floor: "The National Park Service is one step closer to having the director it needs and our country deserves as the agency carries out its mission to protect the natural and cultural resources of our parks. I've known Chuck Sams a long time, and he represents the … Continue Reading

November 01, 2021

Wyden Renews Call to End Secret Law, Following Supreme Court’s Refusal to Consider Public Access to Secret FISA Court Opinions

Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., a senior member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, issued the following statement in response to the Supreme Court's decision not to hear arguments for releasing more public information about the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA): "The Supreme Court has made the deeply troubling judgment that the public has no right to the secret rulings of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Court," Wyden said. "As a member of the Senate Intelligence … Continue Reading

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

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