Press Releases

August 26, 2021

Wyden, Merkley Urge Biden Administration to Take Advantage of Options to Expedite Evacuation of Afghans

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today joined 27 of their colleagues in a letter urging the Biden administration to expedite efforts to evacuate Afghans at risk as the situation in Afghanistan deteriorates. In their letter to U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, Wyden, Merkley and the other senators specifically pushed for the administration to explore the use of parole to speed up entry for Afghans with … Continue Reading

August 25, 2021

Wyden Will Hold Online Town Halls Sept. 3 for Yamhill and Columbia Counties

Portland - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today announced he will have two live on-line town halls hosted by People's Town Hall for residents of Yamhill and Columbia counties on Friday, Sept. 3. The virtual town hall for Yamhill County will begin at 10:30 am, and the virtual town hall for Columbia County will begin at 2 pm. Wyden has held 970 in-person town halls statewide in fulfillment of his pledge to hold at least one town hall each year in each of Oregon's 36 counties. Heading into these two … Continue Reading

August 25, 2021

Wyden, Merkley Urge Defense Department to Hold Public Hearing in Malheur County, Expand Public Comment Period on Proposed Increase of Low-level Training Flights into Owyhee Canyonlands

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week asked the Department of Defense to provide a public hearing in Malheur County on U.S. Air Force plans to expand low-level training flights into the Owyhee Canyonlands as well an additional 30 days for public comment on the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) so Oregonians have a full opportunity to voice concerns about the proposed flights from the Mountain Home Air Force Base in Idaho. In their letter to Defense Secretary … Continue Reading

August 25, 2021

Wyden, Merkley: Mt Hood Community College to Receive $450,000 for Academic Services for Veterans

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that Mt. Hood Community College (MHCC) has earned a $450,000 grant to establish a Veterans Service Center, which would improve academic outcomes for student veterans. "Oregonians who have served this country deserve to have every opportunity to meet their academic goals and have productive civilian careers," Wyden said. "The Center for Veteran Student Success grant will play a crucial role in ensuring that … Continue Reading

August 25, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Announce Over $22 Million to Protect Senior Living Facilities from COVID-19

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced that over $22 million has been allocated to the state of Oregon in an effort to combat the spread of COVID-19 through senior living facilities and fund other protective measures against the virus. The grant will assist in providing medical shelter to residents who test positive for COVID-19 in order to reduce the number of affected individuals in nursing home communities, ensure that infected residents are … Continue Reading

August 24, 2021

Wyden, Merkley: Rogue Community College to Receive More Than $270,000 for Educational Opportunity Center

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that Rogue Community College has earned a $273,793 grant toward an Educational Opportunity Center to expand access to postsecondary education. "Community colleges provide valuable postsecondary programs that everyone-no matter their age, income, or zip code-should be able to access," Wyden said. "The Educational Opportunity Center will play a crucial role in ensuring that Rogue Valley students from all walks … Continue Reading

August 20, 2021

Merkley, Wyden, Bipartisan Colleagues Urge Biden Administration Regarding Immediate Evacuation of Afghan SIV Applicants

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden are working alongside a bipartisan group of 53 senators to urge the Biden administration to enforce strategic agency coordination, hold the Hamid Karzai International Airport, and take any additional steps necessary-including assisting with the passage of individuals to the airport-to urgently evacuate Afghan Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) applicants and their families in addition to U.S. citizens. The letter comes as the … Continue Reading

August 18, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Unveil Bills to Protect Americans from Increasingly Frequent Extreme Heat Events, Hazardous Wildfire Smoke

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley is leading U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), and Alex Padilla (D-CA) today in unveiling five bills aimed at battling wildfires, protecting workers, and helping the public, businesses, and agricultural operators combat the effects of extreme heat and wildfire smoke. The bills follow a summer of drought and numerous triple-digit temperature spikes in Oregon, one of which claimed the life of a 38-year-old farmworker in … Continue Reading

August 17, 2021

Wyden, Merkley: More than $465,000 to Go to Rural Firefighters and First Responders

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that Oregon fire districts have earned a combined more than $465,000 in federal Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG). "Every day, firefighters in local fire districts-both union and volunteer-put their lives on the line to protect our communities in Oregon," Wyden said. "These brave firefighters deserve the equipment and training they need to do their jobs to the best of their abilities and keep our … Continue Reading

August 16, 2021

Oregon Delegation Urges FEMA to Help State Respond to Recent Surge in COVID-19 Cases, Hospitalizations

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's entire congressional delegation today urged the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to help the state cope with the latest surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations by providing medical personnel. In a letter to FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell signed by U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and U.S. Representatives Peter DeFazio, Earl Blumenauer, Kurt Schrader, Suzanne Bonamici and Cliff Bentz, the Oregon lawmakers asked the agency to give "swift … Continue Reading

August 13, 2021

Wyden Will Hold Online Town Hall for Rural Oregon on River Democracy Act

Portland - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today announced he will have a live on-line town hall hosted by People's Town Hall on Tuesday, Aug. 31 beginning at 1 pm PT for rural Oregonians about his River Democracy Act - legislation that would designate about 4,700 miles of rivers and streams as wild-and-scenic as well as expand access to jobs-creating recreation statewide, reduce wildfire risks and protect existing property, grazing and irrigation rights. The virtual town hall is the latest public … Continue Reading

August 12, 2021

Wyden, Merkley: Federal Grants to Support “Stand Down” Events that Provide Services to Homeless Veterans

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that organizations in Coos, Curry, Klamath, Lake and Washington counties earned more than $17,000 in grants from the Department of Labor Veterans' Employment and Training Service (DOL VETS) to host events that provide supplies and services homeless veterans. "Oregonians who put their lives on the line abroad to protect the communities we hold most dear should get the support they've earned for a smooth … Continue Reading

August 10, 2021

Wyden, Colleagues Urge Administration to Combat Jet Fuel Shortages Affecting Wildland Firefighting Amid Another Devastating Wildfire Season

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., led a bipartisan group of Western senators pressing the Biden administration to coordinate and develop a strategy to combat jet fuel shortages that undercut wildland firefighting as wildfires burn across the West. U.S. Sens. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., Alex Padilla, D-Calif., Jim Risch, R-Idaho, Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and Patty Murray, D-Wash., joined Wyden in sending the letter to Interior … Continue Reading

August 10, 2021

Wyden Secures Priorities for Oregon and the West in Senate-passed Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill

Washington, D.C. - The U.S. Senate today passed bipartisan infrastructure legislation that includes essential priorities for Oregon and the West from U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore. The bill now advances to the U.S. House of Representatives for consideration. "For far too long, the phrase 'infrastructure week' was nothing but a cruel joke for communities throughout Oregon and the American West needing significant investments to deal with catastrophic wildfires, severe drought, hard-hit rural … Continue Reading

August 10, 2021

Wyden, Colleagues Honor the Service of World War II Ritchie Boys

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today along with U.S. Sens. Ben Cardin, D-Md., Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., and Jim Risch, R-Idaho, lauded unanimous passage by the Senate Monday evening of their resolution (S. Res. 349) that honors the contributions and service of the Ritchie Boys during World War II. A U.S. Army unit named for Camp Ritchie in Maryland where they trained, Ritchie Boys included individuals of many faiths who were both American- and foreign-born, … Continue Reading

August 09, 2021

Wyden Cosponsors Legislation to Spur Local Economic Growth, Job Creation by Connecting Affordable Housing and Access to Public Transit

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden said today he is cosponsoring legislation that would provide incentives to the coordinated development of affordable housing and transit in Oregon and nationwide. The Livable Communities Act of 2021 encourages local communities to partner strategically to develop bold, innovative solutions that reflect their unique character, while leveraging existing assets, including access to transit to help revitalize neighborhoods, spur economic development, create … Continue Reading

August 04, 2021

Wyden Introduces Bill to Reform Federal Court Record System to Ensure Easy & Free Use For All Americans

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today introduced a bill that would make federal court records free and easily accessible for all Americans. The bipartisan Open Courts Act, introduced by Wyden and U.S. Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, would reform the federal government's Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER), a database of federal judicial filings. "For far too long, unnecessary paywalls have kept the American people from freely accessing public court records. The Open Courts … Continue Reading

August 04, 2021

Wyden, Merkley: $2.5 Million to Go to Oregon College Prep Programs for Underserved Students

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that seven college preparation programs all over the state will receive a combined more than $2.5 million to increase the number of young Oregonians from disadvantaged backgrounds who complete high school and enroll in postsecondary education. "Programs like these can make the difference in an Oregon student's life between starting out with a high school diploma or as a high school dropout," Wyden said. "Every student … Continue Reading

August 03, 2021

Wyden Urges Labor Department to Establish Federal Heat Standard to Protect Workers

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden today demanded the Department of Labor's (DOL) Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) take action to establish a federal heat stress standard to protect workers exposed to excessive heat. "With the increasing prevalence of extreme weather conditions as well as employers who neglect to invest in their workplaces, the risk this danger poses for our workers, communities, and the economy is at a pressure point," Wyden and 12 other senators … Continue Reading

August 03, 2021

Merkley, Wyden Announce Nearly $35 Million in Federal Grants Headed to Oregon to Support Wildfire Recovery Efforts

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced today that nearly $35 million in federal grant funding is headed to Marion, Jackson, Lane, Lincoln, and Douglas counties to help cover the cost of wildfire debris removal efforts. "When the Labor Day fires hit last year, I criss-crossed our state to meet with impacted communities and assess the damage," said Merkley. "It's impossible to put into words how heartbreaking it is to see the rubble of cherished homes and … Continue Reading

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