Gov. Brown testifies on ethics reforms

Gov. Kate Brown spoke to support her proposed ethics legislation package.

Share this article!


Testifying in front of the House Committee on Rules, Gov. Kate Brown supported her proposed ethics legislation package.

She called the reforms “measured, thoughtful and needed,” the Statesman Journal reports.

Brown proposed a trio of bills, two of which are under consideration.

The summary for House Bill 2020:

Alters definition of “public official.” Prohibits Governor, First Partner, Secretary of State, State Treasurer, Attorney General and Commissioner of Bureau of Labor and Industries from receiving money or other consideration for speaking engagement or presentation.

(SOURCE: Oregon State Legislature)

Brown said in the SJ:

“I don’t anticipate that this hammer will be used in many cases,” Brown said. “By and large, most public officials are doing good work and are not trying to run afoul of our ethics laws.”

Senate Bill 9:

Directs Secretary of State to conduct performance audit of state agency public records retention and disclosure practices, including analysis and recommendations on specified criteria.

(SOURCE: Oregon State Legislature)

The committee did not act on the proposed legislation Wednesday.

Brown is also working with the legislature to advance a package of transportation bills that are being held up by Republicans in a protest of the Clean Fuels program.


The group — House Speaker Tina Kotek, D-Portland; Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem; House Minority Leader Mike McLane, R-Powell Butte; and Senate Minority Leader Ted Ferrioli, R-John Day — met with Brown on Monday and Tuesday. So far, they haven’t come close to a compromise, sources said.

The stalemate presents a major challenge for Brown, who is under self-imposed pressure to reach a deal after announcing in her first State of the State speech last month that legislators can’t go home without legislation on transportation and ethics reforms. And this week, 44 Oregon mayors, including Portland’s Charlie Hales, turned up the heat on legislators by calling in a letter for money for road projects. Portland alone has a backlog nearing $1 billion in road repairs.

Legislators said, in the story, that compromise remains unlikely at this juncture.