The 2021 legislative session wrapped up on June 26 and given the unprecedented nature of a completely virtual session partnered with the whip lash of heading into session with a deficit and ending with a giant surplus, it was one for the books.
PASSED – Statewide Tobacco Retail Licensure: SB 587, will create a statewide Tobacco Retail Licensing program. We have been working on this for nearly 7 years so it is very exciting to see it finally done. Oregon was one of only a handful of states without this kind of program. Now, all retailers in Oregon that sell tobacco will be required to be licensed, have annual inspections to make sure they aren’t selling to minors, are following other tobacco control laws, and have a way to hold those who fail accountable.
FUNDED Double Up Food Bucks Program: $4million dollars was allocated for the SNAP incentive program, Double Up Food Bucks. This program helps SNAP participants double their dollar to purchase more fruits and vegetables at farmers markets, farm shares and participating markets. This investment is almost triple the allocation we secured in the previous biennium.
PASSED – Online Sales Ban of Electronic Cigarettes: HB 2261 will restrict the sale of electronic cigarettes online where age verification is nearly impossible. Although the federal government made this change last December, this bill codifies the change in Oregon statute and closes even more loopholes that allowed minors to gain access to deadly tobacco products.
PASSED SNAP Navigator Program: HB 2835 supports college students, many of whom are parents, to access food and basic needs assistance by establishing navigators to work with students on college campuses to address basic needs insecurities.
We were also successful in stopping multiple bills this year that would create loopholes in the Indoor Clean Air Act.
We are proud of the progress made this year and we wanted to share this great news with you. Thank you for taking action when we needed your help and messaging your lawmakers in support of these issues.