Can Net Neutrality Be Coming To Oregon?; Port Looking For Budget Committee Members; Consumer Scam Warning

Can Net Neutrality Be Coming To Oregon?

A bill in the state House aims to restore net neutrality as a priority in Oregon after the Federal Communications Commission repealed the policy late last year. House Majority Leader Jennifer Williamson says she will add a net neutrality amendment to House Bill 4155, legislation to stop internet service providers from sharing or selling customers’ personal information. But can the state implement net neutrality on its own? Opponents say the federal ruling takes precedence over state laws in this case. Williamson says she’s been careful with the language in this amendment, and that it doesn’t directly regulate internet providers.

“If you contract with the State of Oregon, you have to certify that you follow net-neutral policies, so that the internet is free and open. And it’s our hope that by using the buying power of the state, we can help to ensure that Oregonians will have a free and open internet.”

H-B 4155 is in the House Committee on Rules. Attorneys general in 22 states, including Oregon, are suing to reverse the F-C-C’s decision to end net neutrality. The F-C-C chair has said mandating net neutrality stifles investment and innovation.

Port Looking For Budget Committee Members

The Port of Siuslaw is looking to fill some vacancies on it’s budget committee.  The 5 member board is responsible for reviewing and revising the annual budget alongside board members.  The three year term requires about 20 hours each year for the process and generally meet about 3 times from May through June.  Applications can be picked up from the port office or can be downloaded from the port’s website.  Applicants have until March 30th to respond and must be registered voters in the port district.

Consumer Scam Warning

A consumer warning has been released.  A group called the Caregiver Voices United has been recognized by AARP and the OSPIRG as being a scam group intent on misleading voters on a prescription drug price transparency bill.  HB 4005 requires drug companies to support information when putting a more than 10% increase on pharmaceuticals. Including showing their profits.   AARP Oregon’s Jon Bartholomew says “It’s shameful that prescription drug companies would spend their money trying to trick seniors into opposing a bill that would finally shine the light on why drug prices keep going up year after year,” he says. “We are alerting our members: if you get a call from Caregiver Voices United, don’t be fooled. This is not a real patient advocacy organization.”   AARP says if you get a call, ask questions, request to speak to a manager, and do not give them any personal information.