Dedicated funding for public transit. New revenue to sustain the Oregon Health Plan. Public records reforms. Clarity on amending local comprehensive land-use plans. Developed work rules that meshed with demands with wineries. Advocated for creation of a new Cyber Security Center.
Those were just some of the client achievements for the CFM State Affairs team during the 2017 Oregon legislative session.
“This was a session full of challenges,” said CFM’s Dale Penn II. “Our job was to find ways to get past challenges to realize client objectives. In the main, we were successful.”
CFM’s State Affairs team represented 20 clients during the 2017 session on issues ranging from a mandate for physical education in K-12 schools to investing in Oregon’s transportation infrastructure.
“We didn’t have very many idle moments during the session,” recalled CFM’s Tess Milio. “Our client work took us to every hearing room in the Capitol. We were busy.” And the team wouldn’t have it any other way.
Passage of a major transportation package was in doubt until the end of session. “We never gave up hope. We never stopped lobbying or developing new and proactive strategies,” Penn explained. “This was our shot at securing Oregon's first dedicated funding source for transit services while also dealing with bottlenecks that snarl traffic. Our perseverance and advocacy efforts paid off.” CFM’s efforts ensured package contained dedicated funding for public transportation and funding for the Newberg-Dundee Bypass.
A significant part of Oregon’s projected $1.6 billion budget hole was the result of increasing state obligations to pay for Medicaid. Plugging that hole involved careful negotiations and intense lobbying. “This was not a foregone conclusion,” Penn said. “We needed to find creative, politically viable ways to raise the money to sustain health insurance coverage for thousands of Oregonians in an incredibly controversial subject area. We succeeded.”
Access to public records may seem esoteric, but it can be critical to keeping government honest, says CFM’s Zack Reeves. “We represent broadcasters and pushed responsibility for reasonable access to information the public needs to know. Three of the bills we advocated were passed."Public records may seem esoteric, but it can be critical to keeping government honest, says CFM’s Zack Reeves. “We represent broadcasters and pushed responsibility for reasonable access to information the public needs to know. Three of the bills we advocated were passed."
CFM State Affair's Clients
Catholic Community Services
City of Salem
City of Tigard
Columbia River Pilots
Coos/Yaquina Bay Pilot Association
JE Dunn Construction
Oregon Association of Broadcasters
Oregon Land Title Association
Oregon Public Broadcasting
Oregon Solar Energy Industries Association
Oregon Winegrowers’ Association
Portland Arena Management –Trail Blazers
Providence Health & Services
Youth Villages Oregon
Oregon’s land-use laws can seem ponderous, which is why the City of Salem initiated legislation to allow planning commissions to review and approve land-use amendments. “Planning commissions are where the review occurs, the hearings are held and key decisions are made,” Milio said. “It also should be where final action is made.” That view, despite opposition, prevailed.
Contract lobbyists such as CFM work for multiple clients on a wide array of issues – from solid waste to behavioral health to residential energy tax credits.
“Our skill is to match the expertise of our clients with our ability to fold into policy and legislation that can pass,” according to Penn. “We help clients understand what is possible and then make it reality,” adds Milio.
Always with professionalism and integrity.