Tomorrow, the Oregon legislature will convene in a special session to address various policy issues including policing reforms, COVID-response, and a laundry list of other items which will include some bills that failed during the 2020 short session.
The list of ancillary bills under consideration changes by the hour - we do not yet have a clear sense of what all of those issues will be as discussions about the total slate of bills are happening out of public view.We do know, however, the core grouping of bills that will be considered. You can see them here. We will reiterate that this special session is not focused on the state budget (which is currently $1.8 billion in deficit). There will be a follow-up special session later this summer that will include some painful budget decisions. It is likely that legislators will want to see if any additional revenue materializes - either through federal legislation or increased state revenues - before making those decisions.
The special session tomorrow will pose unique challenges that threaten to derail it altogether. First, the logistics of the session - social distancing, a capitol building closed to the public, and limits on the number of people in closed spaces will test the limits of how the legislature can conduct its business in a timely way. Second, the politics of the session are challenging as there appears to be little agreement on which bills to pass coupled with an ever-expanding list of bills being sought by legislators. In short, there doesn't appear to be a plan.
To follow the session, access this link: https://olis.oregonlegislature.gov/liz/2020S1/2020-06-24