Press Releases

November 21, 2019

Wyden: We Have to Secure Rural Communities Against Financial Roller Coaster

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, a senior member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, today highlighted the importance of providing financial security for rural communities in Oregon and nationwide by ensuring long-term funding for schools, road maintenance, law enforcement and other essential services. At a hearing considering pending legislation on Secure Rural Schools (SRS) and Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) programs, Wyden said, "We've got to get rural … Continue Reading

November 21, 2019

Wyden Welcomes Google Decision to Stop Microtargeting Political Ads

Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today praised Google's decision to end microtargeting of political ads, which it announced last night. Wyden first called for an end to microtargeted online ads in August, and again in additional views to the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on election interference released in October. "Google's decision to stop microtargeting political ads is a welcome and commendable step that will improve America's defenses against foreign interference in the 2020 … Continue Reading

November 20, 2019

Wyden Introduces Legislation to Stop Rising Airline Fees Ahead of Holiday Travel Season

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today introduced legislation that would prohibit airlines from charging fees - including cancellation, change and bag fees - that are not reasonable and proportional to the costs of the services actually provided. "Airlines are committing highway robbery when they blindside passengers with unexpected and unscrupulous fees," Wyden said. "The American consumer deserves far better, especially during the holiday season when families and loved … Continue Reading

November 20, 2019

Wyden, Merkley Request Changes to USDA Rule on Hemp Production to Better Support Oregon Farmers

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., as authors of the legislation that legalized hemp production nationwide, today requested that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) make several changes as it develops its final rule for the U.S. Domestic Hemp Production Program. Wyden and Merkley, in a letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue, welcomed the interim rule recently released by the agency as a necessary step to establish a domestic federal hemp … Continue Reading

November 20, 2019

Merkley, Wyden Announce Key USDA Wastewater Investments for Rural Oregonians

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced nearly $3 million in federal grants, and over $4.5 million in federal loans, for critical wastewater treatment and municipal water system upgrades. The rural development funds will go to the cities of Cascade Locks and Amity. "When I meet with local leaders from every corner of Oregon, urban and rural, they tell me that water infrastructure is a top priority. Investments in water infrastructure create good jobs … Continue Reading

November 20, 2019

Wyden, Markey, Van Hollen, Coons, Peters Question Ring’s Data Security Practices

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., Chris Coons, D-Del., and Gary Peters, D-Mich., today questioned the data security practices of Ring, the home security company, after media reports suggesting its lack of regard for customers' privacy and U.S national security. In a letter to Amazon, which purchased Ring last year, the senators wrote, "Ring devices routinely upload data, including video recordings, to Amazon's servers. … Continue Reading

November 14, 2019

Wyden Introduces Legislation to Protect America’s Small Business Owners from Predatory Debt Collection

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today introduced the Small Business Fair Debt Collection Practices Act to protect small business owners from predatory and abusive debt collection practices that can cripple their businesses and weaken the U.S. economy. A House companion bill (H.R. 5013) introduced by U.S. Representative Al Lawson, D-Fla., will be voted on by the House Financial Services Committee today. Wyden's Small Business Fair Debt Collection Practices Act expands the … Continue Reading

November 14, 2019

Merkley, Wyden Introduce New Legislation to Expand Smith River National Recreation Area to Include Oregon

Washington, D.C. - Oregon’s Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today introduced new legislation to expand the Smith River National Recreation Area by 58,000 acres, a move that would protect the diverse ecosystems of the rivers, streams, and adjacent lands of the North Fork Smith River watershed and help boost the local fishing and recreation industries that many Oregonian families rely on. In 1990, Congress enacted legislation to establish the Smith River National Recreation Area … Continue Reading

November 14, 2019

In Letter to Wyden, ODNI Reveals the Government Has Stopped Collecting Phone Location and GPS Data Under Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today called on Congress to ban warrantless tracking of Americans' locations, following a new letter from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) today revealing that the government has stopped collecting phone location and GPS data under Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act. In the letter, which Wyden released today, ODNI says it stopped warrantless location-tracking last year, after the Supreme Court ruled that the government must … Continue Reading

November 14, 2019

Wyden, Merkley Bill Would Bar Use of SRS Funds for Lobbying

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today introduced legislation that would ensure counties receiving Secure Rural Schools (SRS) funds cannot spend those federal resources on any activity related to lobbying. Wyden and Merkley said their bill is to ensure SRS funds remain dedicated to their intended purposes of helping rural counties in Oregon and nationwide pay for schools, roads, bridges, law enforcement and other services. "The importance of SRS for rural communities … Continue Reading

November 13, 2019

Wyden and Merkley Introduce House-Passed Violence Against Women Act

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today joined all of their Senate Democratic colleague in introducing the Senate companion to the House-passed Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act. The bill, which would reauthorize VAWA through 2024, preserves advancements made in previous reauthorizations and includes a number of additional improvements to the current law. "More than 1 million women and girls in Oregon have been sexually or domestically assaulted. … Continue Reading

November 12, 2019

Wyden Statement on Rick Gates' Testimony in Roger Stone's Trial

Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today released the following statement in reaction to Rick Gates' testimony in Roger Stone's trial: "Rick Gates today provided blockbuster testimony indicating that Donald Trump lied under oath when he told Special Counsel Mueller that he did not recall discussing with Roger Stone the release of emails stolen by Russian intelligence officials during the 2016 campaign. Gates painted a picture of a campaign that was not only informed about the releases of stolen … Continue Reading

November 12, 2019

Senators Wyden and Markey Joined by Former Portland Trail Blazer Enes Kanter to Introduce Legislation Denouncing Turkish Human Rights Violations

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden joined today with U.S. Sen. Edward J. Markey and former Portland Trail Blazer Enes Kanter to introduce legislation denouncing the abuses of the Turkish government, including the targeting of journalists, political opponents, dissidents and minorities, including Kurds. By the end of 2018, Turkish counterterrorism forces have arrested or imprisoned more than 80,000 Turkish citizens, closed more than 1,500 nongovernmental organizations on terrorism-related … Continue Reading

November 07, 2019

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Legislation to Boost Economic Development in Malheur County

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., a senior member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, and U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., today introduced legislation to provide Malheur County several economic development opportunities by maintaining and improving rangeland to support local ranchers and protecting the Owyhee River Canyonlands and surrounding lands for recreation and wildlife habitat. The Malheur Community Empowerment for the Owyhee Act is introduced … Continue Reading

November 06, 2019

Merkley, Wyden Announce $15.5 Million Expansion Investment in Medford Roadway

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon’s U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced $15.5 million in federal funding for a critical roadside expansion project along the Foothill Road/North Phoenix Road Corridor in Medford.“Oregon’s drivers, cyclists and pedestrians rely on the quality of our roadways to safely get from point A to point B,” Merkley said. “That’s why BUILD grants and the safety infrastructure improvements they make bring couldn’t be more important. I’m grateful to have … Continue Reading

November 06, 2019

Wyden, Heinrich Call for Open Intelligence Committee Hearing on Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., today called for open hearings in the Senate Intelligence Committee on Section 215 of the Patriot Act before any markup is held. Wyden and Heinrich are senior members of the Senate Intelligence committee. They have consistently worked for common-sense reforms to surveillance programs to ensure Americans have both security and liberty. “We appreciate that the Senate Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing on … Continue Reading

November 06, 2019

Wyden Pushes Trump Administration To Ensure No Human Trafficking, Forced Labor Exist In Government Contract Supply Chains

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., this week urged the Trump administration to do more to ensure the federal government does not do business with contractors that have human trafficking or forced labor in their supply chains of companies. In a letter with Sens. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., to Attorney General William Barr, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia and Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan, the … Continue Reading

November 06, 2019

Wyden Presses FCC to Secure 5G Networks

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to secure next-generation, 5G telephone networks against hackers, scam-artists and foreign spies. In a letter addressed to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, Wyden demanded the administration require all wireless carriers to implement improved cybersecurity measures - including upgrading encryption and authentication features - on 5G telephone networks. Wyden also pushed the FCC to mandate carriers … Continue Reading

November 06, 2019

Wyden Co-Sponsors Bill to Help Low-Income and Rural Tenants

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today announced he is co-sponsoring legislation that would help low-income and rural tenants of multifamily rural housing stay in their affordable housing units. Direct federal home loans under what's known as Section 515 help to develop affordable housing development in rural areas, but the required affordability restrictions are eliminated when those loans mature or are pre-paid. The Rural Housing Preservation Act of 2019 would give housing vouchers to … Continue Reading

November 04, 2019

Merkley, Wyden Announce Key USDA Investment in Electric Infrastructure Improvement

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today announced a nearly $8.5 million electric infrastructure investment in West Oregon Electric Cooperative, Inc., a Vernonia-based co-op which serves communities throughout Columbia, Yamhill, Tillamook, Washington, and Clatsop counties. Merkley serves as the top Democrat on the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee, which oversees funding for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) program that funded … Continue Reading

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