GO! Bulletin

Oregon's Legislative Session Week 3

It's week three of the legislative session in Oregon! The big news is the recent release of the Governor's Recommended Budget. We will explain what that means and focus on an important bill that will be introduced this week to establish wage standards for Direct Support Professionals.


We have streamlined the GO! Bulletin to focus on updates, bills and topics of importance to the DD Community to get it out to you sooner. Then at the start of each week we will post an updated bill tracking report that outlines upcoming hearings and work sessions for the week on our website and Facebook.

If you are interested in specific bills or legislative topics, this video goes through each step to help you find where bills are in the legislative process and how to sign up for email alerts to get updates directly.

Focus on House Bill 2457: Direct Support Professional Wage Standards

HB 2457 ties average DSP wages to 150% of minimum wage. The bill also includes funding to cover new costs associated with this service. This bill is a priority for the Coalition Oregon DD for two important reasons.


First and foremost, we see the incredible reach of the workforce crisis that leaves people with IDD without the consistent, quality support they need to live their lives. People struggle to keep jobs, maintain personal care, attend medical appointments, and so much more because of the lack of people willing to work for inequitable direct support service wages. People with IDD, their families, their case managers, and the agencies who employ DSPs all deserve the stability that comes with adequate funding.


Second, our legislators and advocacy community deserve a proactive and logical way to build in wage growth for these services. As the economy shifts, it should be no surprise that DSP wages must shift, too, or be left behind. By tying the funding for these wages to minimum wage, we assure that DSP funding will keep current with the rest of society. By locking it in at 150% of (or, one and one-half times) minimum wage, we acknowledge that this is difficult, important, rewarding work that both sustains and affirms lives.

Update on Senate Bill 790

Modifying Abuse Definitions to Include Seclusion & Restraint in Schools

The first hearing for SB 790 was held this past week. This bill expands the definition of abuse to include seclusion and restraint in schools. This hearing included testimony in support of this bill from advocacy organizations, a Community Developmental Disabilities program and parent advocates. If you missed the hearing, it is available to watch through this link. The hearing on SB 790 starts at the 35-minute mark.

Building Oregon's Budget

for the 2023-2025 Biennium

Every two years, Oregon sets budgets for agencies like the Oregon Department of Education, Oregon Department of Human Services (including DD Services) and the Oregon Health Authority. These budgets last for two years. Building the State Budget has three steps:

Last Spring, each state agency submitted an Agency Request Budget to the Department of Administrative Services. These budgets included two main things:

1.      Requests for “current service level” funding. This is what it would cost for the agency to continue to do the same work for the forecasted number of people. The forecast is based on trends of who the agency is serving now and expects to serve in the next two years.

2.      Requests for investments to do additional work are called “Policy Option Packages” or “POPs”. These are investments that go above and beyond current service level.

This week, Governor Kotek released her Governor’s Recommended Budget. This tells us how Governor Kotek would balance the state budget. The Governor’s budget provides the legislature and advocates a starting point as the Legislatively Approved Budget is developed.

The Governor's recommended budget does not have the actual numbers for each item. The actual numbers in the budget will become clearer in the weeks ahead.

For DD Services, the Governor’s Budget included the following:

  • Fully funding the rate model and payment categories for DD Services aligned with new service group levels based on Oregon Needs Assessment results.
  • Case management system technology to improve consistent communication and data reporting between service providers and state agencies.
  • Two positions for cross systems collaboration with Child Welfare to ensure services to parents with I/DD.
  • Funding and positions for the Model Employer Program with a dedicated pool of positions within ODDS to facilitate hiring of people with DD throughout the Department of Human Services.
  • Special Appropriation in the Emergency Fund for Personal Support Workers and Home Care Workers wages.
  • We understand that the Regional Family Network funding and case management funding is included in the Current Service Level.

We will bring you more details about the budget numbers on our priorities as we learn more from legislators. We will need to advocate to ensure that these items are funded appropriately for the next two years in the Legislatively Approved Budget!

DD Coalition Priorities This Session

Fully Fund DD Case Management with Policy Option Package 130 and House Bill 2448

DD Case Management funding has not kept pace with increased workload and complexity of the work over the past several years. Full funding of the DD Workload Model and periodic administrative reviews are needed to ensure case managers who are a vital lifeline to Oregonians with I/DD are adequately compensated for their work. Link 

Establish DSP Wage Standards with Policy Option Package 132 and House Bill 2457

Finally resolve the DSP wage inequities by setting the average wage for Direct Support Professionals to 150% of the Portland Metro minimum wage and cover the cost of Paid Family Leave to stabilize this essential workforce and reduce turnover that places people with I/DD at higher risk. Long-term solution to a long-term issue. Link


Support Regional Family to Family Networks with $1.5M/Biennium.

Regional Family Networks support more than 13,500 families experiencing disability, many who have barriers accessing the formal developmental disability service system. Regional Family Networks work in partnership with thousands of other community-based organizations to reduce inequities for marginalized families.


Support Healthier Oregon - Policy Option Package 105

Provides access to DD Services for everyone who meets disability criteria for DD Services and Medicaid regardless of their immigration status.

Registration Link

Visit the GO Project's You Tube Channel legislative advocacy videos created by our GO! Advocacy Team.

About the Oregon DD Coalition
The Oregon DD Coalition advocates for DD services on behalf of and with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, their families, and support organizations in Oregon.

We influence DD service and community support systems and legislation by communicating with a common, consistent voice – creating better opportunities for Oregonians with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

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