Morning Roundup

Photo credit: Bend Bulletin

Health officials contest Walden’s take on AHCA, Oregon signs on to new travel ban suit and Portland Mayor supports tolls to fund Oregon

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Rep. Walden says ACA replacement won’t affect Medicaid coverage

Oregon Health Authority officials disagree, the Bend Bulletin reports. If the plan, known as the American Health Care Act, is approved, federal funding for Medicaid would decease dramatically beginning in 2020. Experts say this would reduce Oregon’s budget by several billions and could cancel coverage for more than 1 million enrolled in Oregon’s Medicaid program, the Oregon Health Plan.

Oregon joins travel ban suit, again

With the release of a new travel ban this week, Washington state is renewing its ask to block the executive order. Washington filed the first lawsuit against the original ban, which resulted in a temporary stay. As expected, Oregon signed on to the new suit, OPB reports. New York and Massachusetts are also asking to join the suit. Hawaii also filed its own lawsuit this week. 

Mayor Wheeler says Oregon needs to get behind tolls

Our Hot Topics panel two weeks ago touted tolls as a way to fund transportation projects. The mayor agrees. Wheeler says officials don’t have the freedom to say no to evaluating tolls as a funding source for infrastructure, the Oregonian reports. Since future federal funding is unclear, local governments need to get resourceful and consider alternative financing. Tualatin Mayor Lou Ogden also said he supports tolls to fund infrastructure improvements. 

Terminal 1 sale moves forward

Portland is selling Terminal 1 to Lithia Real Estate Inc. for $12.5 million. A contract for that sale has now been signed two and a half months after the city picked Lithia as its buyer, the Portland Business Journal reports. Lithia, based in Medford and operator of Lithia Motors, has said it will likely consolidate its Portland dealerships onto the site. The plans also include a 250,000-square-foot facility and two flex buildings for a separate developer.

Uber says software used to evade Portland regulators still in use

The software, known as Greyball, blocked suspected inspectors from viewing real Uber drivers. Portland has launched an investigation into Uber’s actions to determine if the software was in use after the city partnered with Uber in 2015. Uber says the software was still in use until Wednesday, when Uber banned drivers from deploying Greyball, Willamette Week reports.

Tiller, Oregon for sale

That’s right, the entire town is available for purchase, the Oregonian reports. Located in Southern Oregon, Tiller has a price tag of $3.85 million. The unincorporated town features 250 acres of land along the South Umpqua River. The listing agent says there’s been interest from Chinese investors as well as groups who want to build a senior care facility.  

Privatizing cities may be a new trend. Check out this interview with CH2M innovation director John Willis, who describes CH2M’s growing business division: managing city operations.

Video Series: Francesca Becker, PDX TSA officer

Check out the third installment of “Oregon at Work,” an OB original video series.