Press Release: Oregon Pandemic Recovery Act Legislative Framework

Dr. Lisa Reynolds.jpg

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Following is a legislative framework for a successful and equitable recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic called the Oregon Pandemic Recovery Act (HB-1). This legislative framework was drafted by Lisa Reynolds, M.D., candidate for Oregon State House of Representatives-District 36.  

Dr. Reynolds, will solicit feedback from voters about what the Oregon State Legislature needs to focus on in the upcoming 2021-2022 legislative session. Dr. Reynolds will also work with state leaders, as well as community and business leaders, to identify the most impactful and cost-effective steps to get Oregonians back on solid ground. The Oregon Pandemic Recovery Act is a bold response to COVID-19’s unprecedented threat to Oregonians’ lives and livelihood. The framework consists of three major components: 

1. A large-scale and ongoing public health response that utilizes universal testing, tracing of all contacts, and isolating the ill and the exposed. Extensive, if not universal, testing, both for the presence of the virus, that is, contagiousness, and presence of antibody, or immunity, is necessary before any significant reopening of the economy. Testing must be followed up with tracing of the contacts of all COVID-19 cases, and isolation for those infected or exposed.

2. The moonshot goal of achieving widespread (“herd”) immunity (80-90%) to COVID-19 through demonstrated antibodies and/or vaccination. This is a prerequisite to full economic and societal opening. True economic reopening requires widespread immunity, either through previous COVID-19 illness or through widespread vaccination.

3. Post-pandemic massive investment to modernize Oregon’s healthcare system, schools, and infrastructure through the sale of Oregon COVID-19 Bonds. 

Any full scale ‘re-opening’ in the near future would risk Oregonians’ lives. Rather, restrictions must be lifted methodically and incrementally. The state needs to start planning for a massive vaccine campaign as soon as the vaccine is available. Oregon should be the first state with demonstrated ‘herd immunity’ so that Oregonians can resume safe interactions with friends, family, and neighbors. 

HB1: The Oregon Pandemic Recovery Act of 2021-2022 Outline 

Intra-Pandemic: Stay Home, Save Lives 

● Goals

○ Primary Goal: Save as many lives as possible 

○ Secondary Goal 

■ Educate and feed children 

■ Protect the vulnerable from economic damage 

● Strategic Initiatives 

○ Test/trace/isolate - build a public health workforce 

○ Tech for schools - provide robust learning for every Oregon student 

○ Table - feed the hungry, allocate unemployment benefits, provide rent relief and continue to ban evictions 

 

Transition: reopening (gradual and partial) 

● Goals

○ Primary Goal: Save as many lives as possible 

○ Secondary Goal: 

■ Safe return to economic life (incremental, methodical) 

■ Safe return to school 

● Strategic Initiatives 

○ Universal testing/tracing/isolation - database 

○ Statewide Alert system for Oregonians for disease hot spots 

○ Build a vaccine fund - and a system to vaccinate all Oregonians 

 

Post-Pandemic (herd immunity; post-vaccine) - a stronger, more equitable Oregon 

● Goals

○ Economic recovery 

○ Prepare Oregon for its greatest decade of economic growth 

○ Improved lives for all Oregonians 

● Strategic Initiatives 

○ Oregon COVID Bonds - to raise and invest $4B/year for 5 years 

■ Basics 

● Modernize public health and healthcare systems 

● 21st-century schools from PreK-post secondary 

● Build Infrastructure - bridges, public transport, bike lanes 

● Build Housing - affordable & supportive housing 

■ Boosts: Climate action 

● Give preference and priority for projects that reduce carbon, increase climate resiliency, and increase economic opportunity equitably. 

The proposed funding would be through COVID-19 Bonds. This approach would allow Oregonians, as well as others around the country and the world, to invest in Oregon. This will allow the state to build a healthcare system that improves the health of every Oregonian, to complete long-neglected infrastructure projects and to modernize our schools. 

Visit Dr. Reynolds’ COVID-19 website: www.oregoncoronavirusupdate.com or her campaign website www.LisaForOregon.com. Also Facebook, Instagram, Twitter (@lisafororegon).

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