What Changed In Oregon Laws With The New Year?

Changed In Oregon Laws: On Jan. 1, Oregon’s new laws took effect. These laws address restitution for crime victims, workers’ compensation, and voter registration.

β€œThese changes will make Oregon more safe, fairer, and more affordable,” Senate Majority Leader Kate Lieber said. β€œBut, the work isn’t done. We look forward to delivering more progress for the people of Oregon in 2023.”

What Changed In Oregon Laws With The New Year?

Fixing Public Safety And The Justice System

  • Crime victims need recompense to move on. HB 4075 simplifies the court procedure for securing restitution and prioritizes compensation to crime victims.
  • Senate Bill 1574: Sexual Assault Survivors’ Medical Forensic Care
    Sexual assault survivors in Oregon seek assistance from SANEs and SAEs. Sometimes hospital exam evidence isn’t included in the SAFE Kit, despite being supposed to be. SB 1574 includes Medical Forensic Examination Forms in the SAFE Kit before law enforcement receives it.

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  • HB 4002: Farmworker overtime
    Both state and federal law compels companies to pay 1.5 times the usual rate for hours worked above 40 per week. Agricultural laborers were exempt from state and federal maximum-hour requirements and did not receive overtime compensation. Intensive manual labor, high heat, and chemical exposure exacerbated this disparity. HB 4002 reduces overtime limitations from 55 hours in 2023 to 40 hours by 2027. Overtime compensation will be 1.5 times the regular rate. HB 4002 gives farm owners $55 million in tax credits and $10 million in grants or loans.
  • Injured Worker Parity Act (H.R. 4138)
    Injured employees often rely on workers’ comp to recoup lost pay. After maximal improvement, worker’s comp benefits expire. The insurance company that paid out these benefits routinely overpays workers whose maximal improvement was decided before the doctor’s final verdict. HB 4138 restricts and extends backdated maximum improvements to safeguard workers.
  • SB 1586: Nondisclosure Agreement Protections
    The WFA was passed in 2019. Under the WFA, private employers must create a documented policy addressing discrimination and sexual assault. The WFA also forbids companies from requiring NDAs. Legislators learned about a loophole that allowed NDAs to be used inappropriately. SB1586 closes the loophole. The law prohibits NDAs for current and former private and governmental workers. The proposal allows NDAs under certain conditions and renders banned NDAs unlawful and unenforceable.
  • Senate Bill 1513: Bakery Worker Overtime Protection
    Oregon law forbids mill or factory employers from making workers work more than 10 hours a day or 55 hours a week. When processing perishable goods, an employer may claim undue hardship. Oregon’s predictive scheduling law compels firms with at least 500 people globally in retail, hospitality, and food service to send workers a written plan two weeks in advance. Manufacturing is excluded. SB 1513 closes loopholes that certain bakers used to coerce unpaid overtime. The measure prevents bakery and tortilla producers from firing an employee who refuses to work overtime without five days’ notice.
  • HB 4113: Ovarian cancer worker compensation
    Oral and male reproductive cancers are assumed to be compensable occupational diseases for non-volunteer firemen with at least five years of service. HB 4113 adds bladder and gynecological malignancies. An employer can overcome the assumption by producing clear and persuasive medical proof that the firefighter’s job didn’t cause or contribute to cancer.

Affordable And Accessible Healthcare

  • Oregon’s SB 526 created Universal Home Visiting. Home Visit programs reduce child abuse and neglect, enhance birth outcomes, improve school preparation, and raise high school graduation rates. SB 1555 outlines the Oregon Health Authority‘s responsibilities to support and reimburse newborn home visiting services.
  • Senate Bill 1538: Dental care for CFAC
    SB 1538 creates a dental program via the Oregon Health Authority for low-income Pacific Islanders in COFA.
  • House Bill 4124: School Assessment Survey and Best Practices
    Oregon schools use standardized examinations to measure student achievement, impediments, and needed adjustments. Standardized tests are useful, but we must know which ones to use and when. House Bill 4124 sets a committee to evaluate state, federal, and school district evaluations. This poll will record who provides these assessments, how much they cost, their purpose, and what data they give schools. This committee will produce suggestions and best practices to ensure compulsory academic tests are used successfully.
  • HB 4031: Oregon School Diversity Goals
    HB 4031 aims to match the number of diverse Department of Education staff with the number of varied pupils in public schools to promote equity and representation.
  • House Bill 4114: School Board Financial Disclosure
    Most Oregon elected officials must report their economic relationships annually to the Oregon Government Ethics Commission (SEI). Before HB 4114, school board members weren’t required to submit the paperwork. HB 4114 requires school board members to submit the SEI to the Ethics Commission yearly.
  • Online Voter Registration Bill (HB4133)
    Since 2010, Oregon allows drivers to register online. Before HB 4133, non-drivers license holders couldn’t register online. This measure simplifies online voter registration for Oregonians without driver’s licenses.

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