Every dollar makes a difference.
Welcome to my website. Let me take a moment to tell you how honored I am to serve as your State Representative.
During my 32 years as a high school principal and teacher, I taught our students how important it is to respect each other's differences and that we win when we work together to build consensus around solutions that benefit our community. And we can solve any issue with honesty, independence and determination.
I've taken those same lessons to Salem and reached across the aisle to get things done for our communities. As the Co-Speaker of the Oregon House, I have contributed to building consensus and making effective government a hallmark of this past session.
The 2011 Oregon Legislature recently adjourned and, contrary to the expectations of some, the business of the state did not come to a halt. We had many successes, based on constructive collaboration and mutual respect for our legislative institution.
Some of the more notable accomplishments this session include:
- Increasing the K-12 budget from $5.56 billion to $5.738 billion
- Increasing the number of students eligible for Pre-Kindergarten classes
- Establishing a Health Exchange to help individuals and small businesses get better prices on their health care coverage
- Restoration of freight service on the Coos Bay Rail Line is essential for future cargoes moving through the Coos Bay harbor and 900+ corresponding job retention and creation in the south coast region.
- Expanding the Bottle Bill
- Promoting government accountability and efficiency by (1) reforming the way agencies evaluate staffing needs and (2) requiring state agencies to respond to official performance audits
- Passing Cool Schools legislation to create jobs and retrofit schools with energy efficient technology.
- Passing a bi-partisan Legislative and Congressional redistricting plans
- Adjusting tax credits to secure more financial resources for education, health care and public safety
- Helping small businesses through programs like Buy Oregon and Farm to Schools while funding for OregonInC and expansion of the BOOST program.
- Providing an appropriation for the General Fund Food Program within Housing and Community Services to assist the 20 regional food banks in the Oregon Food Bank Network to help fight hunger and poverty.
I'm happy to report that Oregon's economic fortunes are improving – bolstered by one of the nation’s fastest growing job markets, a series of positive revenue forecasts and the implementation legislation passed in 2009 and 2010 that helped to create more and better jobs.
The 2011 Legislative session has certainly put Oregon on the right path, but we still have a long way go.
Your continued support and involvement will go far to advance our efforts in Salem.
Once again, welcome to my website, and please feel free to contact my office.
Co-Speaker Arnie Roblan