News from Representative Walden


Dear Friend,

Ensuring our veterans are getting the care they deserve at the VA is a priority of mine in Congress. To do this, we must make sure that the VA employees caring for our veterans are doing their jobs with integrity, devotion, and respect. Recently, the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act was signed into law. This bill streamlines the process to remove poor performing VA employees, expands whistleblower protections, and holds those who care for our veterans to a higher standard. I’ve heard from veterans throughout Oregon who have told me first-hand about the need to bring accountability to the VA. This legislation is just one important step towards reaching that goal and providing our veterans with the care they deserve. Learn more here:

I hope you’ll continue reading to learn more about my recent meetings in Oregon, legislation we’re working on in the House of Representatives, and Oregonians I welcomed to our nation’s capital.

Touring The Dalles Dam

Recently, I toured The Dalles Dam and saw first-hand the inner workings of hydropower generation that is so important to our clean power mix in the Pacific Northwest. The Energy and Commerce Committee – which I chair – is working on legislation to better utilize this low carbon, renewable energy source. In Oregon, over 40 percent of our energy is produced from hydropower at relatively low costs to consumers across my district. We have a great opportunity in the Energy and Commerce Committee to promote this renewable energy source to ensure consumers across the country receive affordable and reliable electricity from hydropower, which emits no greenhouse gas emissions. To read more about my recent tour of The Dalles Dam, please click here:

Cultus Lake Campground

Click here or on the image above to learn more about my recent meeting at Cultus Lake

After expressing my deep frustration with the recent closure of Cultus Lake, I was pleased to see the Forest Service went into high gear to find a better way forward. This past weekend, I put together a meeting and a tour of the campground with the Forest Service and campground officials.  While no one disputes the need to protect campers from harm, shutting down the campground for the whole season didn’t make sense from a planning or practical view.

That is why I as soon as I learned of the situation I wrote to Deschutes National Forest Supervisor John Allen to express these concerns. I joined many Oregonians who publicly expressed their concerns about the closure.

Crooked River Roundup

Great to see Commissioner Jerry Brummer and Steve Forrester at the Crooked River Roundup Rodeo this weekend

Meeting Oregonians in Washington, D.C.

 Linda Sindt of Medford made her annual trek to the nation’s capital to advocate on behalf of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.  Linda’s husband died of this terrible cancer and she’s a leading advocate for increased research to put an end to this disease.  I support additional funding for medical research.

The Oregon Home Builders Association members briefed me on the federal issues affecting housing and homebuilding in our part of the country. With a strengthening economy, we’re again seeing higher costs for renters and homebuyers in many parts of our district.  

It was a packed house in my Washington, D.C. office as students with the Oregon Rural Electrical Cooperative Association took time to meet with me after their Capitol tour. They were in Washington to learn more about our political process and the history of our nation’s capital.

Expanding broadband internet access in rural Oregon

Click here or on the image above to view my remarks

During a recent hearing of the Energy and Commerce Committee, I called for action to improve broadband connectivity in rural America. People in the most remote parts of our country, including in rural Oregon and other unserved parts of America, need access to the internet.  

The committee examined the definition of broadband service in America and improving the “mapping” of broadband coverage across the country. During the hearing, I emphasized the importance of ensuring the definition of broadband service meets the needs of consumers and provides a productive level of internet service. I also stressed the need to increase the accuracy of mapping broadband coverage to identify unserved areas of the country that do not have internet access. Learn more here:

Bringing career and technical education into the 21st Century

As the internet and emerging technologies continue to transform our economy, it is critical that our students are prepared for these changes when they enter the workforce. We’re certainly seeing signs of these changes in Oregon, where technology companies are investing in, and benefiting from, all that Oregon has to offer. At times, however, our education and training system lags behind emerging industries and markets, and I hear from students and teachers who are worried about meeting the demands of the new economy. We have not updated the Career and Technical and Education (CTE) Act, for example, in more than a decade. It’s time to bring our education and training programs all the way into the 21st Century.

That’s why I was proud to support the Strengthening CTE for the 21st Century Act (H.R. 2353) as it passed the House this week. This bipartisan bill will help more Americans -- especially young Americans -- enter the workforce with the knowledge and skills they need to compete for good-paying, in-demand jobs in industries critical to the nation’s economy. To learn more about this legislation, please click here:

That’s all for this update. Remember, you can always keep in touch with me via email, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

It is an honor to represent you in the U.S. Congress.

Best regards,

Greg Walden
U.S. Representative
Oregon's Second District

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