Economy

VOTE 2022: Gubernatorial candidates differ on policies to address Oregon’s housing crisis

BY: - October 18, 2022

Oregon has been in a housing crisis for years. State economists say the state is short about 111,000 homes needed for current residents. When economists considered future growth, a 2021 analysis suggested the state needs to build more than 580,000 homes by 2040.  Homes that are on the market are out-of-reach for many residents. Oregon’s […]

The student debt relief application is live: Here’s what you need to know

BY: - October 17, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden announced Monday that student loan borrowers can begin to apply for debt relief through a new online application. Biden said the application is easy and fast. It will allow every borrower with an income of $125,000 or less ($250,000 for married couples) to have up to $10,000 in debt forgiven, […]

For offshore wind aspirations to become reality, transmission hurdles must be cleared

BY: - October 17, 2022

President Joe Biden’s administration laid out ambitious additional goals last month to boost offshore wind power generation, one of the American renewable energy industry’s emerging wide open frontiers. The federal announcements come as coastal states across the country are increasingly setting offshore wind energy targets, seeking to capture not just clean energy but the potentially […]

Workers dealing with electric lines

Judge rules two Colstrip bills passed by state lawmakers in 2021 violate the U.S. Constitution

BY: - October 12, 2022

Though legal experts and even the Montana Legislature’s own legal staff warned the Republican-dominated House and Senate that many of the bills lawmakers were drafting and passing didn’t quite meet constitutional muster, the 2021 session produced a flurry of bills, most of which were signed by Gov. Greg Gianforte. In the intervening months, courts across […]

Oregon governor candidates debate education, housing, abortion in Bend

BY: - September 27, 2022

Oregon’s three candidates for governor had another chance to differentiate themselves in their first televised debate in Bend on Tuesday evening. Democrat Tina Kotek, Republican Christine Drazan and nonaffiliated candidate Betsy Johnson answered questions from central Oregon residents before an auditorium of Oregon State University-Cascades students and staff.   The debate was largely muted, with candidates […]

USDA to spend $500 million extending high-speed internet to rural America

BY: - September 26, 2022

The U.S. Department of Agriculture will send more than $500 million in loans and grants to telecommunications providers to bring high-speed internet to rural areas across 20 states, Secretary Tom Vilsack said Wednesday. The department will spend $360 million in grants and $141 million in loans through its ReConnect Program to benefit sparsely populated communities, […]

An ambulance outside Oregon Health & Science University's emergency department.

Lack of staff in hospitals leads to patient deaths, health officials say

BY: - September 23, 2022

People in Oregon are dying as a result of the state’s hospital staffing shortage. Patrick Allen, director of the Oregon Health Authority, told a state legislative committee on Thursday that people in need of intensive care often have to wait for admission because hospitals lack staff. And that, he said, can lead to the worst […]

Oregon needs thousands of construction, government workers to close housing gap

BY: - September 23, 2022

Oregon’s housing shortage is worse today than it was before the start of the Covid pandemic, a state economist told lawmakers Wednesday during a hearing to discuss ways of easing the statewide crunch. The shortage of affordable housing has a big impact: Oregon has one of the highest homeless rates in the U.S., with more […]

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown calls for new tax credit, other semiconductor incentives

BY: - September 22, 2022

Gov. Kate Brown wants the Legislature to act quickly next year to pass a new tax credit and other incentives to expand Oregon’s semiconductor industry. During a state House committee meeting Wednesday, Brown laid out the broad strokes of a plan she worked on with business leaders and U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Oregon, to position […]

White House: Nearly 500,000 Oregonians qualify for student loan forgiveness

BY: - September 20, 2022

Almost 500,000 Oregonians are eligible to have some or all of their student loans forgiven, the White House announced Tuesday. Most of the Oregon recipients – more than 332,100 – could have up to $20,000 forgiven because they received Pell Grants, which are provided to students whose families can’t help them pay for college. The […]

As rural homelessness increases, HUD aims money at helping people without access to shelters

BY: - September 20, 2022

The Department of Housing and Urban Development has opened up millions of dollars in funding for groups serving unhoused people in rural areas — an unprecedented move by the agency, say housing advocates. People living in cars, parks and on the street at night, which the agency labels unsheltered homelessness, has increased across the nation, […]

Oregon’s latest economic forecast predicts a record $3.4 billion kicker to taxpayers

BY: - August 31, 2022

Brisk wage and employment growth in Oregon are generating record state revenues that could send an unprecedented $3.4 billion back to taxpayers in 2024, the state’s latest economic forecast said. At the same time, the state’s Office of Economic Analysis said the chance of a recession is a “coin flip.” “The outlook is essentially a […]