Press Releases

April 26, 2018

Wyden, Merkley, DeFazio, Huffman Urge Continued Chetco Protections

Washington, D.C. - Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Reps. Peter DeFazio and Jared Huffman today strongly urged federal officials to extend interim mineral withdrawal protections for the Chetco River in southwest Oregon. The lawmakers' letter to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue notes that their request for the iconic river is urgent because the current five-year mineral withdrawal for 17 miles of the Chetco will expire on July 25. If the current … Continue Reading

April 24, 2018

Wyden to Forest Service: Use Wildfire Funding Fix to Get Back to Work in the Woods

Washington, D.C. - In a hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee today, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., pressed the interim chief of the U.S. Forest Service to explain how the agency will use a recently passed wildfire funding solution to restart wildfire prevention projects in Oregon that have been shown to reduce the size and severity of devastating wildfires across the West. Last month, Congress passed the bipartisan Wildfire Disaster Funding Act, legislation … Continue Reading

April 24, 2018

Wyden: FAA Must Address Reported Allegiant Air Passenger Safety Concerns

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden today pressed the Federal Aviation Administration to answer questions about Allegiant Air passenger safety after a troubling "60 Minutes" report about the carrier, which has a flight schedule that includes the Eugene and Medford airports. Among the questions Wyden asks in his letter to Acting FAA Administrator Daniel K. Elwell are whether Allegiant's reportedly high number of safety incidents requires any action; and why the FAA never implemented its' … Continue Reading

April 23, 2018

Wyden Pushes for Critical Funding for Women’s Business Centers

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., has joined 18 of his colleagues in sending a letter to Senate appropriators demanding $18 million in funding for the Small Business Administration's (SBA) Women's Business Centers (WBC) program. Already greatly underfunded, the WBCs program would receive an even larger funding cut in the president's Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 budget. The Women's Business Center program was first established in 1988 to provide specialized assistance to women starting a … Continue Reading

April 20, 2018

Wyden Responds to CIA’s Selective Declassification on Haspel’s Record

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., a senior member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, issued the following statement in response to the selective declassification of documents relating to the background of Gina Haspel, who is nominated to serve as director of the Central Intelligence Agency: "The Morell report confirms some extremely troubling facts about Deputy Director Haspel and the destruction of interrogation videotapes. She didn't just draft the cable that authorized the … Continue Reading

April 20, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Call on Administration to Maintain Crucial Funding for Oregon’s Sea Grant Programs

Washington, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley joined 24 of their Senate colleagues in urging the administration to reconsider its plan to eliminate funding for the National Sea Grant program in the president's Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 budget. "As senators from some of the states with Sea Grant programs, we see firsthand how this federal investment is leveraged locally to bring immense returns to coastal communities, fishermen, universities, and students," the senators … Continue Reading

April 20, 2018

Wyden Demands Trump, Officials Reveal Extent of Koch Brothers’ Influence on Administration

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today sent a series of letters to the Trump administration demanding further information about the Koch brothers' increasing influence over the White House and its policymaking. The letters from Wyden and five other senators follow a report sent last December by the Kochs' Seminar Network to wealthy donors detailing policy wins within the Trump Administration directly benefitting Koch businesses. "Americans have a right to know if special interests … Continue Reading

April 20, 2018

Merkley, Wyden, 170 Members of Congress Introduce Resolution Calling for Pruitt’s Resignation

WASHINGTON - Oregon's Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced today that they have joined a group of 170 members of Congress in introducing resolutions in the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives formally calling on Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt to resign. The resolution comes in response to Pruitt's repeated ethics violations, misuse of taxpayer dollars, and actions that fundamentally undermine the mission of the EPA - favoring big polluters … Continue Reading

April 20, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Introduce Robocop Act

Washington, D.C. - Oregon Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley have joined Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) to introduce the ROBOCOP (Repeated Objectionable Bothering of Consumers on Phones) Act, a bill that would require phone companies to offer free effective tools to block robocalls. The legislation comes in advance of a hearing in the U.S. Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee entitled "Abusive Robocalls And How We Can Stop Them." The National Do Not Call Registry has not … Continue Reading

April 19, 2018

Wyden: Without Transparency, Haspel Nomination Hearing Will Make a Mockery of Senate Oversight

Washington, D.C. - Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., a senior member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, issued the following statement on news the committee will hold a hearing May 9 on Gina Haspel's nomination to lead the Central Intelligence Agency: "Unless the CIA declassifies and makes public specific information about Gina Haspel's background, proceeding with this hearing will make a mockery of the Senate's constitutional responsibilities with regard to nominations," Wyden said. "There is … Continue Reading

April 18, 2018

At the Start of the Recreation Season, Wyden, Bishop Announce Progress to Improve Access to Outdoor Recreation Opportunities

Washington, D.C. - As Oregon prepares for the start of the recreation season, U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee Rob Bishop, R-Utah, today announced significant progress on their work to remove barriers to outdoor recreation and boost rural economies across the country. Their bipartisan Recreation Not Red-Tape (RNR) Act, which would promote access to outdoor recreation opportunities and allow more visitors to get outdoors, today unanimously … Continue Reading

April 18, 2018

Wyden, Gardner, Paul, Markey Press DHS on Foreign Cell Phone Surveillance Devices Used in U.S.

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Cory Gardner, R-Colo., Rand Paul, R-Ky., and Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., today called on the Department of Homeland Security to release unclassified documents with new details about threats posed by foreign government use of cellular surveillance devices in Washington D.C. and other U.S. cities. "The American people have a legitimate interest in understanding the extent to which U.S. telephone networks are vulnerable to surveillance and are … Continue Reading

April 17, 2018

Senate Passes Bipartisan “Kids to Parks Day” Resolution

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Rob Portman, R-Ohio, Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., Mazie K. Hirono, D-Hawaii, and Cory Booker, D-N.J., applauded the passage of their bipartisan resolution, which encourages children to get outdoors by designating May 19 National Kids to Parks Day. First celebrated by the National Park Trust in 2011, the eighth annual Kids to Parks Day marks the beginning of a summer-long series of events at state parks countrywide that … Continue Reading

April 12, 2018

Senators Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Legalize Hemp

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Senators Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) introduced today the bipartisan, Hemp Farming Act of 2018, which would legalize and clearly define hemp as an agricultural commodity and remove it from the list of controlled substances.  The legislation will also give states the opportunity to become the primary regulators of hemp, allow hemp researchers to apply for competitive federal grants from … Continue Reading

April 12, 2018

Merkley, Wyden Announce Major Emergency Relief Grants for Oregon

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Oregon's U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley, who serves on the Senate Appropriations Committee, and Ron Wyden, today announced more than $37 million in grant funding to reimburse Oregon for the extensive repairs to infrastructure that was damaged by severe winter weather and record-breaking wildfires. Nearly $11.3 million is related to last year's wildfires-from repairing pavement damage, to removing tree hazards, to addressing rockfalls. "Since the devastating wildfires last … Continue Reading

March 27, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Urge Trump Administration to Drop Proposal to Auction off Bonneville Power Administration Assets

Washington, D.C. - Oregon’s U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and a bipartisan group of their colleagues urged federal officials to oppose Trump’s Fiscal Year 2019 budget scheme that would auction off the transmission assets of the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) and other Power Marketing Administrations (PMAs). “There is a long, bipartisan tradition of opposing similar past proposals, including last year’s proposal that recommended selling off federal PMA transmission … Continue Reading

March 27, 2018

Wyden, Merkley Seek Federal Disaster Help for Coastal Fisheries

Washington, D.C. - Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today urged Trump administration officials to take action on their nine-month-old request seeking disaster aid for West Coast fisheries. The Oregon senators wrote Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross that the Trump administration has failed to answer their June 2017 letter following up on a May 2017 request by Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and California Gov. Jerry Brown for fishery disaster declarations to help coastal communities. At the urging of … Continue Reading

March 23, 2018

Wyden, Paul, Welch, Sensenbrenner Introduce Legislation to Increase Transparency of Intelligence Spending

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Rand Paul, R-Ky., and Reps. Peter Welch, D-Vt., and Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., today rolled out legislation that would require the president to disclose the topline annual budget request to Congress from each of the 16 federal agencies conducting intelligence activities. Currently, spending levels for these federal intelligence agencies and activities is classified and hidden from the public. The Intelligence Budget Transparency Act would … Continue Reading

March 23, 2018

Wyden Wins Passage of Expanded Low-Income Housing Tax Credit

Washington - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden said today that the expanded low-income housing tax credit in the larger government spending bill that passed the Senate will provide much-needed affordable housing help for families in Oregon and nationwide. The 12.5 percent increase in the allocation of low-income housing tax credits for the states and income-test adjustments benefiting the lowest-income renters is expected to generate 35,000 new affordable housing units and 40,000 jobs all across America … Continue Reading

March 22, 2018

Wyden Statement on Voting for Must-Pass Spending Bill that Includes Long-term Wildfire Funding Fix, Lifeline Funding for Rural Communities

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., issued the following statement on voting for the must-pass government spending bill approved tonight by the Senate: "Congress tonight took significant steps toward addressing the infernos that are ravaging Oregon and the West,"Wyden said. "I have fought for years to end 'fire borrowing' and provide a long-term, bipartisan fix to the Forest Service's common-sense defying wildfire budget. I'm proud that my solution with Sen. Crapo will now become … Continue Reading

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