Representative Brad Witt and Senator Betsy Johnson have teamed up to deliver $212,500 for the Vernonia School District to support the final fundraising efforts for the relocation and construction of the Vernonia Schools.
Witt (D-Clatskanie) and Johnson (D-Scappoose) worked with House and Senate leadership to win approval of the grant in a unanimous vote of the 20-member Legislative Emergency Board. Funding for the grant will come from the Oregon Office of Emergency Management’s Local Disaster Assistance Loan and Grant Account.
“This grant is an investment in Vernonia’s future,” Witt said. “It will allow this remarkable community to move ahead with the amazing fund-raising effort that literally began before the flood waters in Vernonia receded seven years ago.”
Serious flooding in December 2007 destroyed the Vernonia’s schools. A replacement K-12 school facility, built on higher ground, opened in 2012. The $40 million school project was funded by private donations, local, state and federal funds. A small amount remains to be raised. With the recent help from the Legislature and continuing private philanthropy, the goal of “closing the books” is within sight. Read More
Representative Brad Witt has received the nomination of the Working Families Party (WFP) in his re-election bid for State Representative of Oregon’s House District 31. The WFP is the second party to nominate Witt for a 5th term in the State Legislature, representing Columbia and northern portions of Washington and Multnomah Counties. Witt also received the Democratic Party’s nomination to fill the House District 31 seat earlier this year.
Oregon’s WFP was established in 2006 in an effort to provide political backing for the working families of our state who may feel under-represented or perhaps even alienated by the sharp political divisions that exist between the Republican and Democratic Parties.
The WFP’s priorities include better and higher paying jobs for Oregonians, improved financial security for workers/retirees and their families and a renewed prosperity across Oregon’s rural and urban communities alike.
The WFP has also been a leader in promoting educational and technical training opportunities, affordable housing and sensible foreign trade policies.
Commenting on his latest nomination, Representative Witt said “I am proud and pleased to be the nominee of the Working Families Party of Oregon. Their nomination validates my career-long efforts to support economic and workforce development and the security of our state’s middle class working families.”
On December 12, 2013 family and friends of Jacob Levenseller, as well as school staff and students, gathered at the Vernonia Schools for a ceremony to dedicate the swing set that has been installed at the school in Jacob’s honor.
Jacob, a 2012 graduate of Vernonia High School, died tragically in June of 2012, just days after his graduation. Jacob loved to swing and the new swing set has been installed at the new school to honor his memory.
State Representative Brad Witt dedicated the swingset
A plaque has been installed at the base and was unveiled by the Levenseller family. State Representative Brad Witt was introduced by Superintendent Dr. Ken Cox and spoke as part of the ceremony. “Jacob, for whom the simple pleasure of sitting on a swing during recess meant so much, could be seen so often enjoying that pleasure and being fulfilled by it,” said Witt during his remarks. “As we know, Jacob left us early, tragically and far, far too early. And so in respect and honor to him and his family and his friends, we dedicate these swings today with an eye towards the simple pleasures, the youthful exuberance, and just plain fun that these swings will bring to generations of Vernonians.” Read More
As we all know, Oregon has a history of “firsts”: First with a bottle bill; first with a beach bill; first to fully implement vote-by-mail; first to require real estate licensure, etc. Next week, we will consider another first: HB 3521 directs all designated voter registration agencies to provide the Secretary of State with age, residence and citizenship data, and the digital signature of each person who meets the qualifications set by secretary rule. If this bill passes, we will be the first state in the nation to make voter registration nearly automatic for most of the population, unless individual citizens opt to exclude themselves. Read More
Bill helps stop abuses of H2B visa program which allows foreign workers to get US jobs
Legislation introduced by Rep. Gene Whisnant (R-Sunriver) and Rep. Brad Witt (D-Clatskanie) received a hearing today in the House Business and Labor Committee. HB 3315 will help prevent abuses of the H2B visa program and will provide more jobs for Oregonians.
“I have worked with the Oregon Employment Department on this issue since the major abuses occurred in Oregon in 2009 using the Federal stimulus funds to employ foreign workers and not Oregonians,” Rep. Whisnant said.
Charles Pope reported on the H2B visa abuses in an October 20, 2011 Oregonian article, “Stimulus money for Oregon jobs hired foreign workers.” He reported “at least $7 million in federal stimulus money intended to provide jobs to unemployed Oregonians instead paid wages to 254 foreign workers, federal investigators have concluded.” Read More
Oregon State Representative Brad Witt made an unannounced visit to Vernonia on March 29, 2013 and took time to sit down with Vernonia’s Voice to talk about the current legislative session in Salem and some of the bills he is currently working on.
Witt is a Democratic member of the Oregon House of Representatives from District 31. He has been representing most of Columbia County and parts of Clatsop and Multnomah counties since 2007. Read More