State Updates

State Updates

PublIshed on Feb 23, 2024

The 2024 Legislative Session is underway and moving quickly towards adjournment on March 10th. Nearly 300 bills have been introduced, of which half or less are moving forward after the first round of deadlines last week. As expected, the focus has been on housing affordability, Measure 110 reform and behavioral health access.  

The Chamber is tracking 41 bills, and actively engaging in a dozen plus budget requests. Thus far the Chamber has submitted letters in support and/or signed on to the following bills: 

  • SB 1537: Governor’s Housing Production package 
  • SB 1530: Housing Funding bill – Shelters and Infrastructure 
  • HB 4042: Industrial Site Readiness 
  • HB 4158: Childcare Infrastructure Grant for Small and In-Home Providers 
  • SB 1576: Civil Law omnibus with amendment re: recreational immunity
  • Budget Request for OSU-Cascades Site Mitigation ($24M) 

This session’s top priority for the Chamber is SB 1537 and companion budget bills, including SB 1530. Both have passed the first committee deadline and are pending a hearing in Joint Ways and Means Committee to determine budget allocations.  

SB 1537 initially contained $200 million for a Moderate-Income Revolving Loan Program and $200 million for Infrastructure, among other important housing investments. Both of these line items were significantly impacted by an amendment in the Senate Housing Committee, and the Chamber is advocating for restoration of the initial funding levels.   

Investments in workforce housing development and infrastructure are, in our mind, the most important investments to move the needle in our current housing crisis.  We are urging Chamber members and housing advocates to contact members of the Ways and Means Committee with the following message: 

  • Addressing housing production deficits will require taking action across multiple budget years 
  • State support for programs funding infrastructure, site acquisition, site readiness, and moderate-income financing is critical to unlock and lower the cost of housing production 
  • Establishing ongoing programs enables coordinated planning between local governments and housing developers prior to seeking state assistance 
  • Programs ensure housing production outcomes and accountability and maximizing the impact of limited resources 
  • Adding programs back to SB1537 facilitates establishing programs that are immediately ready to deploy funding appropriated in future legislative sessions 
  • Support the Governor’s request for adding back the programs with $200 million of investment 

Please contact Sara Odendahl, Director of Government Affairs, with questions about outreach on SB 1537. 

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