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Cultural Advocacy Coalition 2012 Regular Session Legislative Report

Cultural Advocacy Coalition
Effective advocacy takes individuals willing to harmonize political communications in concert with a broader community. And so, I want to offer a big thank you to those who attended, and those who presented during Advocacy Day 2012. Thank you for strengthening our coalition with your participation and for helping us remain an effective, unified voice for art, humanities and heritage in Salem. Whether you were able to attend Advocacy Day or not, please take a few minutes to review the Cultural Advocacy Coalition’s legislative report from this recent sessionl. And, please contact us if you have any questions or comments.
Despite tight schedules we had outstanding legislative participation and want to extend our appreciation to legislators who spoke with our full group in the final busy weeks of this session. These legislators clearly articulated the process and the politics of the 2013 Legislative Session and took time out of hectic schedules to spend time with CAC members. This email includes links to their home pages and I would like to encourage you to visit their websites and sign up to receive their legislative updates.
Senate President Pro Tempore, Senator Ginny Burdick
Thank you to Metropolitan Youth Symphony and Cappella Romana for sharing their time and talents, on behalf of Oregon’s arts and culture community, with those serving in Salem. 
We also want to thank: Kendall Clawson, Office of the Governor Executive Appointments Director and Arts and Culture Policy Advisor; Chris D’Arcy, Oregon Arts Commission and Oregon Cultural Trust Executive Director; Kristina McNitt, KLM Consulting; and Vince Porter, Office of Film and Television Executive Director. This group of talented and committed professionals gave presentations that helped us prepare to build or strengthen relationships with policymakers; influence legislative outcomes and tell our compelling stories in a way that offers relevant solutions to the challenges facing policymakers in Salem.
It was an important day with great opportunities to connect directly with legislators and hear from those working in the political trenches on behalf of arts, humanities and heritage. Now that the dust has settled, CAC’s legislative report on the session is below for your review.
2012 Regular Session
Legislative Report
Oregon’s historic, first annual session opened February 1st and adjourned March 5th. The session produced a balanced state budget and policy agreements, including: payment extensions for homeowners with reverse mortgages, more work on health care transformation, further education reforms and a last-minute deal on foreclosure protections.
 
There were many unknowns going into this session, but the good news is that Oregon’s cultural partners weathered the session well and were not specifically targeted, for good or for ill. The Cultural Advocacy Coalition’s top bills of interest are listed below, including one CAC will monitor closely as it is implemented, related to Percent for Art; as well as a bill that creates opportunities for communities around arts education. More details below:
PASSED:
 Education: SB 1581 requires new “achievement compacts” between school districts and the Oregon Education Investment Board (OEIB). SB 1581 requires the OEIB to establish the terms for achievement compacts and that each school district form an “achievement compact advisory committee” to develop and ensure that compacts are implemented. Each advisory committee will “develop plans for achieving district outcomes, measures of progress, goals and targets expressed in an achievement compact, including methods of assessing and reporting progress…” This substantial policy legislation could be a critical opportunity to engage community values around educational outcomes and arts education.
 Percent for Art: CAC tracked about 10 pieces of legislation “relating to education” for the purpose of ensuring no negative changes were made to the Percent for Art Program. HB 4061, which establishes a Special Committee on University Governance, directs a task force to study and report on the interest of some in the higher education community to establish independent boards at state institutions; specifically at the University of Oregon and Portland State University. Recommendations will be available no later than November 2012. This is a task force CAC will actively monitor, to ensure that greater autonomy does not equate to the abrogation of Percent for Art programs in higher education institutions.
 Heritage: SCR 204 commemorates the centennial of woman’s suffrage in Oregon. After five failed statewide ballot measures, and eight years before ratification of the 19thAmendment to the United States Constitution, Abigail Scott Duniway witnessed the culmination of 42 years of advocacy when, on November 5, 1912, Oregon voters amended Section 2, Article II of the Oregon Constitution to read “citizen” rather than “white male citizen” when referring to a right to vote.
 Non Profits: HB 4047 allows nonprofits that do not hold an OLCC license to annually auction or raffle up to four liters of liquor. The bottles must be imported and/or distributed in Oregon through the OLCC, and events are limited to those held annually, lasting no longer than one day. Prior approval required.
FAILED:
 Revenue: HB 4065 would have directed the Oregon State Lottery Commission to establish lottery games to benefit veterans’ education and economic development. The bill received one hearing and died in committee. This lottery bill was of interest as a template to evaluate the viability of exploring modifications to existing lottery programs, as a source of new revenues dedicated to cultural programs.
We are already hard at work preparing for 2013. Look for more information in the coming weeks, on how you can help protect the Oregon Cultural Trust Tax Credit and support new funding for art, culture and heritage.
Cultural Advocacy Coalition

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