Our first official Lobby Day at the Oregon State Capitol went off without a hitch, and wildly exceeded expectations. Our delegation of 20 members did an incredible job communicating our concerns and focusing legislators' attention on our policy priorities - all while forging personal connections.
I can't emphasize enough the importance of establishing relationships with your Representatives and Senators. It goes such a long way in breaking through the noise that barrages them during session.
It was clear from many of our conversations that we were able to measurably move the needle in our favor on our priority issues with key legislators and staff.
In addition to discussing our opposition to the proposed tax increase [HB2204], we also discussed other important issues being explored by the legislature: creating licenses for temporary events and social consumption lounges [SB307], ending employment discrimination for off-hours cannabis use[SB301], and the necessity for adding OLCC commissioners from the cannabis industry to improve representation and accountability [SB1057].
Our staff is working tirelessly with lawmakers at the capitol to help ensure we achieve our legislative priorities. We are very effective at presenting arguments to legislators. But, hearing the real life impacts of these policies directly from local business owners and constituents is much more impactful.
We are proud that ORCA Lobby Day will be a regular event that will continue for all subsequent legislative sessions, and we look forward to having an even greater showing of our members there in the future!