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Devlin, Macpherson earn legislative posts

Local legislators have been notified of the appointments to various House and Senate committees. They include:

Rep. Greg Macpherson

Rep. Greg Macpherson, D-Lake Oswego, was appointed Monday to serve as chair of the Judiciary Committee of the Oregon House of Representatives for the 2007 Legislative Session.

The appointment came as the Speaker-Elect of the Oregon House and President of the Oregon Senate announced committee assignments that take effect when the Session convenes Jan. 8.

In addition, Macpherson was appointed to the Energy and Environment Committee and the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee.

'I think Rep. Macpherson's long career as an attorney makes him an ideal choice to head the Judiciary Committee,' Speaker-Elect Jeff Merkley said. 'I expect Rep. Macpherson to be a key player in the discussion of land-use legislation, particularly how we address the questions surrounding the implementation of Measure 37.'

Macpherson said that he looked forward to working on that issue.

'The state has been hit with a deluge of Measure 37 claims in recent weeks, including some huge ones in sensitive natural areas. We need to focus on how this ballot measure is working in practice and whether it should be modified to accomplish what the voters intended.'

As chair of Judiciary, Macpherson will be heading one of the busiest committees in the Legislature. He stated that he plans to keep lawyers throughout the state apprised of committee developments through his legislative e-mail newsletter.

'It's important that we keep the members of the Bar in the loop, because our work directly affects what they do and the Oregonians they advise and represent.'

Sen. Richard Devlin

State Sen. Richard Devlin, D-Tualatin, was named chair of the Ways and Means Natural Resources Subcommittee last Friday by Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem.

Devlin will also serve as vice-chair of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Education and as a member of the full Ways and Means Committee for the 2007 legislative session.

'I look forward to chairing the Natural Resources Subcommittee as we work to protect Oregon's air and water quality and be responsible stewards of Oregon's natural resources,' said Devlin, whose district includes Lake Oswego, West Linn and portions of Southwest Portland.

He will also continue his work on education issues with an appointment as vice-chair of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Education. Devlin served as chair last session and due to legislative process will serve as vice-chair with a House member serving as chair this session.

'I am excited about continuing my work from the interim and will continue to fight for education funding for our public schools, community colleges and universities,' he said. 'Education will continue to be a top priority for me this upcoming session.'

Devlin noted that building a sustainable budget will be a priority for him as he works on the Natural Resources Subcommittee and the full Ways and Means Committee.

'Making sure budgets are responsible and accountable will be a focus of my work on Ways and Means,' Devlin added.

Senate Majority Leader Kate Brown, D-Portland, praised the placement of Devlin on these committees.

'We are thrilled to have Sen. Devlin taking up the charge on issues as important as education and natural resources,' said Brown. 'He brings a wealth of experience that will serve all of Oregon well in the upcoming legislative session.'