1st Oregon News Minute from the AP

Date: 02/12/2013 03:59 AM

OR–1st NewsMinute/351
Here is the latest Oregon news from The Associated Press


SALEM, Ore. (AP) – Gov. John Kitzhaber will watch President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address from first lady Michelle Obama’s box. Kitzhaber spokesman Tim Raphael says the White House extended the invitation yesterday, presumably to highlight Kitzhaber’s health care and education initiatives. The Obama administration has given Oregon $1.9 billion to help enact the governor’s health reforms. Raphael says Kitzhaber is honored by the invitation and called it “gratifying” for Oregon’s efforts.

SALEM, Ore. (AP) – Gov. John Kitzhaber has told a legislative committee hearing in Salem that Oregon must seize the opportunity to nail down financing to build a new Interstate 5 Columbia River bridge between Portland and Vancouver, Wash. Oregon’s governor says that in addition to increasing capacity and improving traffic flow, it’s imperative to replace the bridges because of earthquake concerns. Yesterday’s hearing kicked off legislative consideration of Oregon’s contribution to the project.

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – Supporters of same-sex marriage say they’re aiming at a vote next year to reverse Oregon’s ban on gay marriage, approved in 2004. The state’s leading gay-rights group, Basic Rights Oregon, said yesterday it would form a campaign organization to get a constitutional amendment on the November 2014 ballot. Voters in Oregon approved the ban by a vote of nearly 57 percent to 43 percent. But the group says approval of gay marriage in other states and shifting public opinion has put momentum on its side. The Oregon Family Council tells The Oregonian that it has been preparing to oppose such a measure.

GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) – Authorities in Southern Oregon say they arrested a motorcyclist after twice giving up the chase for safety reasons, and the man told them he did better than 180 mph on Interstate 5. State Police say 23-year-old Jeffrey B. Engebretson was arrested Sunday after his motorcycle slid out on a gravel road. Officers found him in the woods. Police say Engebretson told them he exceeded 140 mph on a county road, 180 mph on the interstate. He faces multiple charges.


Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.