As The State Turns

oregon2008 Legislation: No Impact on Drivers?
In 2008 Oregon legislators passed a law that codified punishments for drivers that choose to operate a motor vehicle without a license or insurance. Starting in 2009 the Oregon state DMV began putting together annual reports on the impact of this law in order to track its effect on the population. So what’s the good news? Well, apparently the law has had no measurable effect on the number of people committing these crimes. Some insiders say that an eventual change might still be seen because licenses are valid for eight years and that current drivers may not renew when their licenses expire. Until more time has passed and an accurate picture can be painted, it is unlikely that any official call will be made on the success or failure of the law.

Oregon’s Drug Screening Effort
Due to an ongoing failure to improve numbers amongst those engaged in drug or alcohol abuse, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) has switched gears changing the care focus from treatment to prevention and intervention. Splitting the state into 16 Coordinated Care Organizations, the OHA will be paying them in a way that rewards the reduction of patient care costs over time. This comes along with a host of new measurements designed to promote and keep better track of immunizations, cancer screenings and other procedures.

While different aspects of this approach have proven themselves in certain capacities elsewhere, so far the results in Oregon have been up and down. This is likely do to with time required to properly train personnel and get a system like this up and running. By taking this road, Oregon has stepped forward into the kind of progressive treatment territory that few other states have even begun to glance at sideways.

Wolf Slaying 101
Is a wolf chasing, biting or otherwise injuring your livestock or working dogs? Don’t have a permit to shoot it? Thanks to a rule from House Bill 3452 becoming permanent, the aforementioned scenario will no longer be a problem for ranchers fighting predators. Colloquially referred to as the “caught in the act” rule, this clause was designed to allow ranchers a loophole in the protection order for endangered wolves. If anyone takes a shot, however, they better be prepared to report the incident, keep the scene and carcass intact, and show proof that they had already been using nonlethal deterrents in addition to having removed any unnatural attractants. The list of required evidence goes on, which seems to strike a balance between protecting the wolves and keeping them at bay.

At the end of 2012 there were at least 46 wolves in Oregon. Experts say that wolf attacks on ranch animals are a rare occurrence.

by Johnny Beaver

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