Energy, Environment, and Land Use Update – April 28

This week marks the end of week 13 of the Legislative Session. Below is a review of the week.

BIOMASS

SB 634, which states that energy from a biomass facility can be used to meet the state’s 1.5% investment in renewable energy requirement, passed through the Senate 30-0 and now needs to have a public hearing in the House. There are concerns that the bill will not be scheduled for a hearing. AOC is urging the chair of the House Energy and Environment Committee to provide a public hearing. If this bill is important to you we encourage you to deliver the same message. Please contact Mark Nystrom for more background on the bill.

ONSITE SEPTIC

The technical fix bill for the onsite septic loan program, SB 812, had a public hearing on Monday, April 24th and is scheduled for a work session on May 3rd. Senate Bill 812 makes three useful changes to this program. The first two changes would clarify the program’s focus, ensuring that it does not require small businesses or homeowners to replace systems not required by law or policy. The other proposed change would allow an owner to borrow an amount less than the full system replacement price. Upon implementation it was discovered that the law requires borrowers to borrow the full amount required to replace a failed system. While in some instances borrowers need to loan the full amount, we do not want to require small businesses or homeowners to borrow more than they need. This correction would also help stretch the dollars available to make loans to other customers.

MINING

SB 1036 , which exempts the creation of landfills and public works projects from mining regulations, passed the Senate on a 29-0 vote. AOC has worked closely with the Oregon Refuse and Recycling Association, DOGAMI, 1000 Friends of Oregon and DCLD to ensure that the bill fits a narrow scope of removing material for construction materials. It now heads to the House.

BUILDING CODES

HB 2737, which is intended to deal with the recent movement of tiny houses (under 400 sq ft.) with lofts and ladders, is currently awaiting a floor vote on the House.


Contributed by: Mark Nystrom | AOC Energy, Environment & Land Use Policy Manager

2017-05-03T20:56:25+00:00 April 28th, 2017|Categories: Energy Environment & Land Use|