HOUSE COMMITTEE ON WATER

 

 

March 06, 2003   Hearing Room B

8:30 AM Tapes  33 - 34

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:            Rep. Bob Jenson, Chair

Rep. Jackie Dingfelder, Vice-Chair

Rep. Linda Flores

Rep. Jeff Kruse

Rep. Mike Schaufler

Rep. Carolyn Tomei

 

MEMBER EXCUSED:             Rep. Jeff Kropf, Vice-Chair

 

 

STAFF PRESENT:                  Pete Test, Committee Administrator

Ryan Sherlock, Committee Assistant

 

 

MEASURE/ISSUES HEARD:            HB 2515 – Public Hearing

                                                HB 2210 – Work Session

                                                HB 2376 – Public Hearing

                                                HB 2512 – Public Hearing

                                                HB 2551 – Public Hearing

 

 

These minutes are in compliance with Senate and House Rules.  Only text enclosed in quotation marks reports a speaker’s exact words.  For complete contents, please refer to the tapes.

 

TAPE/#

Speaker

Comments

TAPE 33, A

004

Chair Jenson

Calls meeting to order at 8:38 a.m., and opens a public hearing on HB 2515.

HB 2515 – PUBLIC HEARING

015

Pete Test

Committee Administrator. Offers a description of HB 2515.

025

Geoff Huntington

Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB). Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT A) regarding HB 2515.

085

Rep. Kruse

Comments that the Ways and Means committee will decide if this is an appropriate use of the funds, and discusses the purpose of the bill.

095

Huntington

Discusses the possible mechanisms for funding the bill.

115

Chair Jenson

Expresses his concerns for how projects would be chosen to receive the support as outlined in HB 2515.

120

Huntington

Outlines the ways in which projects would be chosen for support, identifying the main factor being merit based.

135

Rep. Kruse

Comments on the need in every county for watershed funding, and points out that a major problem is the fairness in which the funding is distributed.

205

Rep. Dingfelder

Clarifies that currently the money from OWEB goes straight to the Department of Agriculture and is then distributed.

210

Huntington

Discusses the process in which money is distributed.

225

Rep. Dingfelder

Clarifies that it is the Department of Agriculture which allocates the funds, and if this is the case, that allocation legislation should be directed to the Department of Agriculture.

235

Huntington

Further discusses the allocation process.

245

Rep. Schaufler

Asks whether the funds are allocated to those groups and projects which product the best grants.

255

Huntington

Discusses the way in which funds are allocated, and how the state attempts to distribute funds equitably.

290

Chair Jenson

Thanks Mr. Huntington for his testimony, and calls John McDonald to the witness stand to address Rep. Dingfelder’s earlier question regarding funding.

295

Rep. Dingfelder

Asks about the allocation of funds.

305

John McDonald

Association of Conservation Districts. Explains the way in which funds are distributed to the counties.

320

Chair Jenson

Asks Mr. McDonald to give any other testimony he would like.

330

McDonald

Expresses his concern for the means of allocation, and the problems in the system.

350

Chair Jenson

Presents for the record written testimony (EXHIBIT B), regarding HB 2515, offered by Les Helgeson of the Native Fish Society who was unable to attend the meeting.

360

Rep. Kruse

Observes the need to correctly allocate the federal funds which the state will soon receive.

365

Rep. Dingfelder

Points out that Soil and Water Conservation districts do have the ability to pass local taxes, which the Watershed Council does not relying heavily on the State for funding.

TAPE 34, A

025

Chair Jenson

Responds to Rep. Dingfelder’s comment, indicating the difficulties met by the counties in trying to pass such taxes.

035

Rep. Dingfelder

Clarifies her earlier comments regarding the local tax option.

040

Rep. Kruse

Points out the local tax option is not exercised because the likelihood of it being effective is little to none.

050

Chair Jenson

Closes the public hearing on HB 2515, and opens a work session on HB 2210.

HB 2210 – WORK SESSION

055

Pete Test

Committee Administrator. Offers a description of HB 2210.

070

Rep. Tomei

MOTION:  Moves HB 2210 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation.

075

Rep. Flores

Comments on the alleviation of her concerns regarding the fiscal impact of HB 2210.

080

 

VOTE:  6-0

AYE:            In a roll call vote, all members present vote Aye.

EXCUSED:  1 - Kropf

 

Chair Jenson

The motion CARRIES.

085

Rep. Kruse

MOTION:  Moves HB  2210 be placed on the CONSENT CALENDAR.

 

 

VOTE:  6-0

EXCUSED:  1 - Kropf

 

Chair Jenson

Hearing no objection, declares the motion CARRIED.

095

Chair Jenson

Closes the work session on HB 2210, and opens a public hearing on HB 2376.

HB 2376 – PUBLIC HEARING

100

Pete Test

Committee Administrator. Offers a description of HB 2376, and explains that the purpose of this public hearing is to add four sets of testimony to the public record:

  • The Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (EXHIBIT C)
  • The Oregon Association of Conservation Districts (EXHIBIT D)
  • Northwest Sports Fishing Industry Association (EXHIBIT E)
  • Native Fish Society (EXHIBIT F)

120

Sharon Livingston

Long Creek, Oregon. Offers testimony in support of HB 2376.

145

Chair Jenson

Closes the public hearing on HB 2376, and opens a public hearing on HB 2512.

HB 2512 – PUBLIC HEARING

150

Pete Test

Committee Administrator. Offers a description of HB 2512.

160

Adam Sussman

Oregon Water Resources Department, Legislative Coordinator. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT G) in support of HB 2512, and defers to Mr. Wozniak to present the online information.

245

Rep. Schaufler

Asks what the motivation was for compiling the relevant data.

250

Karl Wozniak

Oregon Water Resources Department, Ground Water Hydrologists. Discusses the use of the compiled data, both internally in the Water Resources Department and externally by the public and other public bodies. Offers a presentation on how the compiled information is provided to the public on the Internet.

TAPE 33, B

020

Committee

Discussion on the impressiveness of the online information as presented by Mr. Wozniak.

030

Chair Jenson

Comments on the fact that the Oregon Water Resources Department has already affectively fulfilled the requirements of HB 2512, therefore negating the current language in the bill.

045

Rep. Schaufler

Comments on the extensiveness of the online availability of information.

050

Chair Jenson

Concurs. Closes the public hearing on HB 2512, and opens a public hearing on HB 2551.

HB 2551 – PUBLIC HEARING

055

Pete Test

Committee Administrator. Offers a description of HB 2551.

065

Kristina McNitt

Oregon Water Resources Congress (OWRC). Introduces the OWRC’S new executive director Anita Winkler, and offers written testimony (EXHIBIT H) in support of HB 2551.

145

Rep. Kruse

Clarifies that with HB 2551 the Department would compile a list of qualified individuals in the private sector, which would then be used to staff these request of the Department.

155

McNitt

Concurs and discusses the options to the department.

170

Rep. Schaufler

Clarifies that those groups which use this program are not given preferential treatment.

180

McNitt

Explains that there should be no preferential treatment as a result of this bill, rather the bill would create parallel processes.

195

Rep. Dingfelder

Expresses her concerns for creating a two tier system, and asks if the processed would be helped if the fees were raised.

200

McNitt

Discusses her groups support for the raise in fees, and expresses her doubt that the two issues are conflicting.

215

Rep. Dingfelder

Asks if this proposed system couldn’t be provided by the private sector.

230

McNitt

Explains that many districts have already done this process through the private sector, but the proposed bill would be a tool for the department.

245

Anita Winkler

Oregon Water Resources Congress. Explains that she is there in support to Ms. McNitt.

250

Rep. Tomei

Asks who would be opposed to HB 2551.

255

McNitt

Indicates that no group that she knows of is opposed to the bill, and points out those other groups which are in support of the bill.

275

Chair Jenson

Asks Mr. Sussman to reflect on the funding of the bill.

280

Adam Sussman

Oregon Water Resources Department, Legislative Coordinator. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT I) in support of HB 2551.

360

Rep. Schaufler

Asks if this will help expedite the process.

370

Sussman

Acknowledges that HB 2551 would streamline the process.

405

Chair Jenson

Asks how the Department will pay for these additional Full Time Positions (FTEs) if they don’t get the raise in fee bill passed.

410

Sussman

Explains that the Department would take the money from the groups wanting the service, and pay the contracted experts with that money.

425

Chair Jenson

Clarifies his question, asking how those extra positions in the Department would be funded.

430

Sussman

Discusses the ways in which these positions could be funded.

TAPE 34, B

010

Chair Jenson

Asks Mr. Sussman to address the topic later, and expresses his concern that those contractors would want to have positions at the Department.

025

Sussman

Points out that HB 2551 would not require any general funds support.

040

Jean Wilkinson

Oregon Farm Bureau. Offers testimony in support of HB 2551.

060

Amanda Rich

Special Districts Association of Oregon. Offers testimony in support of HB 2551.

075

Chair Jenson

Expresses his concerns that HB 2551 should have been classified as an economic development bill at the beginning of the session. Closes the public hearing on HB 2551, and opens a public hearing on HB 2515.

HB 2515 – PUBLIC HEARING

110

Les Helgeson

Native Fish Society. Presents previously offered written testimony (EXHIBIT F) in opposition to HB 2515.

180

Chair Jenson

Closes the public hearing on HB 2515, and adjourns the meeting at 10:30 a.m.

 

 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

 

A – HB 2515, written testimony, Geoff Huntington, 1 p.

B – HB 2515, written testimony, Les Helgeson, 1 p.

C – HB 2376, written testimony, Staff, 5 pp.

D – HB 2376, written testimony, Staff, 4 pp.

E – HB 2376, written testimony, Staff, 2 pp.

F – HB 2376, written testimony, Staff, 1 p.

G – HB 2512, written testimony, Adam Sussman, 3 pp.

H – HB 2551, written testimony, Kristina McNitt, 2 pp.

I – HB 2551, written testimony, Adam Sussman, 3 pp.