Written by Maggie Hatt, Co-Editor in Chief
It’s hard to believe a year has passed since (arguably) one of the biggest elections in modern history. Every year, there are new issues to debate, new candidates to support, and new bills to be passed. This year was no different, despite the fact that politics as we know it seems to have been turned on its head. Here are some major milestones and notable nominations in the 2017 elections, both within Oregon, and across the United States as a whole.
City of Forest Grove: Measure 34-276: Levy Renewal (Passed)
- This measure renews a levy passed in 2002 by voters to provide additional funding to the Forest Grove fire, emergency medical, police, parks, aquatic, and library services. The second renewal occurred in 2012 and is set to expire in July of 2018, but by passing Measure 34-276, the levy has been extended even further.
Portland Community College: Measure 26-196: Bonds to construct job training space, improve classrooms, safety, and technology (Reporting)
- PCC’s bid for securing $185 million in bonds arbitrated by tax collection on properties not subject to the limits of sections 11 and 11b, Article XI of the Oregon Constitution would help accomplish the following: Improve transit and disability access, construct a child care facility at Rock Creek campus, and modernize the Portland Metropolitan Workforce Training Center, among others.
Hillsboro School District: 34-278: Bonds to improve schools and classrooms, address safety, repairs, and overcrowding (Passed)
- The Hillsboro School District moved to place a measure on the November ballot entailing a $408 million capital construction bond that would allow aging school buildings and out-of-date security measures to be updated. The existing property tax rate of $2.24/$1000 assessed value is not to increase.
Utah: John Curtis Wins Congressional Race
- Provo’s mayor, John Curtis, won his campaign for the Third Congressional District, beating out the Democratic candidate Kathie Allen. The election was held to replace Jason Chaffetz, who resigned from Congress on June 30th of this year. Though Allen managed to raise money by capitalizing on Chaffetz’s abdication, Curtis was able to pull out a win in the majorly conservative district.
Virginia: Democrats Take Back The House
- Virginia’s House of Delegates now consists of 48 Democrats and 47 Republicans, the former winning back 14 seats in November 7th’s election. One standout is Danica Roem, the first openly-transgender person to be elected to congress. She beat out incumbent Robert Marshall who had previously served the state for 26 years. Her victory over someone who called himself Virginia’s “chief homophobe” demonstrates the shift occurring away from its previous views.
Maine: The ACA’s Legacy Continued
- Maine has become the first state to legislate the Affordable Care Act further via state referendum. Voters chose to increase access to Medicaid, a program under the ACA, despite the state holding out for some time among other Republican strongholds, who are now trying to get similar measures onto 2018 ballots.