August 21, 2020
News & Notes
Committees give chairs input to take to WEA Board
   The Government Relations, Land Use & Housing, and Transportation committees met last week with the proponents and opponents of the Metro Get Moving 2020 measure.
   Both sides presented information on why timing is important with this issue.
   Due to the current economic conditions, business groups had asked Metro to delay sending this measure to the ballot, but Metro President Lynn Peterson said this measure will allow for job creation to help the economy.
   She also said the region is competing for federal funding and would lose out to other parts of the country if it is delayed.
   The measure's funding mechanism is a payroll tax.
   According to the opposition's Lori Hardwick, Kevin Looper and Dan Lavey, the bond measure is a tax on jobs and punishes employment.
   During the virtual meeting, committee members posed a number of questions and concerns about the funding mechanism and the timing of the measure.
   One member pointed out that the Metro Council set a maximum rate on the measure, but not "the rate," stressing there needs to be more conversation about the rate and what could work.
   The WEA Board will hold a special meeting on Wednesday, September 2 to discuss the measure and whether to take a position on it.
Forum looks at getting back to school, a much more challenging feat for fall
   WEA members and guests met virtually with the superintendents from the Beaverton, Hillsboro, and Tigard-Tualatin school districts to talk about the challenges they are facing going into a new school year - a year unlike any other.
   Hillsboro Superintendent Mike Scott stressed to the audience that he and the other educators want to get back to a traditional setting for learning.
   He said right now it's not possible to provide in-person instruction given the metrics that need to be met in order to keep students and staff safe.
   Beaverton Superintendent Don Grotting said his school district does have case managers, who are trying to reach out to families to find out their needs.
   He also said childcare is a problem, as some parents have to choose between working or taking care of their young children.
   The school districts also have staff who are challenged with not only teaching through distance learning, but having their children at home too.
   Tigard-Tualatin's Superintendent Dr. Sue Rieke-Smith talked about the need for reliable internet access.
   She said all students in a household and their parents should be able to access the internet at the same time.
   Smith asked for grace and was candid about how educators tend to be planners, but right now decisions are being made within 24 hours.
   The superintendents also talked about bringing their communities together to talk about the role of school resource officers from the local police departments.
   They said the pandemic has exposed differences in economics and social justice, but it has brought forth some community partnerships to fill the gaps too.
   If you missed this program, or would like to watch it again, visit WEA's YouTube Channel.
Governor said new plans may be needed to get students back in the classroom
   Oregon Governor Kate Brown hosted a press conference today where she said the spread of COVID-19 is slowing, but it's not enough to get most Oregon students back to in-person learning.
   She said the infection rate is still too high and at this rate, it'll take 200 days before students will be able to return to the classroom.
   Brown is suggesting two paths that could get the state to its goals.
   The first path would put further restrictions on restaurants and bars, limit travel, and close gyms and other indoor event spaces.
   Her other path, with less economic impact, would ask people to increase their use of face coverings, get workplaces to follow OSHA guidelines, have effective contract tracing, and be able to get those infected to quarantine.
   She said, "We must do better, faster. We must work together, And we must do it now."
   To read more, turn to KGW.
Odds & Ends
  • University of Oregon Economics Professor Tim Duy shared his insight about fiscal stimulus and household savings rates during the pandemic in Bloomberg's Opinion section. Click here to read more.

  • Grants totaling $420,000 are on its way to 145 small Clackamas County businesses. The program, in cooperation with Micro Enterprise Services of Oregon (MESO), is providing individual grants ranging from $2,500 to nearly $10,000 to businesses located throughout Clackamas County, which have been affected by the recent economic conditions.

  • The City of Sherwood will start taking applications for two small business grant programs. Click here for more information.

  • The City of Tigard has some new grant funding available too. Applications are due by Sunday (August 23). To see more, click here.

  • Pamplin Media is looking for some unsung heroes in our community. Do you know someone who is a hero? Nominate them by September 4. Click here to find out more.
Events coming up
Fri. 8/28 Westside Golf Scramble - There are a few spots left. Register today! We're looking for volunteers too! Contact Teresa Dunham for more information.

Wed. 9/2 The WEA Board of Directors will have a special virtual meeting to discuss the Get Moving 2020 Bond Measure.

Wed. 9/9 at 7:30 a.m. there will be a virtual meeting of the Transportation Committee. For more information, contact Pam Treece.

Wed. 9/16 at 12:00 p.m. the Land Use & Housing Committee will meet virtually.

Wed. 9/23 at 7:30 a.m. the WEA Board of Directors will meet virually.

To see more of the WEA calendar, please visit the WEA website.