The Salem Machine at Work

This past week was hectic for everyone in Salem, as it was the last week to get bills scheduled to be voted on by committees in their original chamber (they must be voted on by committees by April 18).

ORCOPS started the week out by testifying with the Chiefs, Sheriffs, and other law enforcement organizations to support a measure facilitating medical screenings when an officer is exposed to another person’s bodily fluids. Senator Tim Knopp (R – Bend) expressed support for the concept, acknowledging that “peace of mind matters” to law enforcement officers in this situation.

We continue to work with the District Attorneys Association to prevent a damaging bill that would impede officers’ ability to interview minors (HB 3242), and our conversations with Rep Barker (D – Beaverton), whose committee heard the measure, have been fruitful. We’ll learn next week whether the measure is tabled or if there is enough lingering support to pass it in some form.

ORCOPS also had a fruitful meeting on PERS “reform” with Senator Steiner-Hayward (D – Portland/Beaverton), who seemed to indicate support of ORCOPS’ position on protecting and respecting the State’s pension promises. ORCOPS is the only member of the pension-defending PERS Coalition representing local law enforcement officers.

ORCOPS is pleased to report that Senate Bill 712 unanimously passed the Senate Workforce Committee this past week, with some amendments. The bill provides PERS time credit for officers who are injured on duty and receive workers’ compensation benefits, and fixes a serious inequity within Tier-3 PERS (OPSRP) where someone injured on the job and collecting workers comp currently doesn’t receive service credit for the period between the injury and their return to work.

Several other more “housekeeping” measures passed, such as HB 2987, which slightly modifies the crime of giving false information to an officer, and clarifies the language slightly. On these measures, ORCOPS tracks the legislation and works with committee members, but does not need to give testimony.

Lastly, HB 2674, which would fix an oversight in the extension of PERS to OHSU’s police officers, was not scheduled for a hearing, even after OHSU and ORCOPS came to an agreement on the policy. Although the measure was very narrow in scope and effect, the House leadership refused any and all measures that would expand PERS, even so slightly, under fear that it would impede other negotiations. ORCOPS will continue to pursue the measure as an amendment.

Stay safe out there.

Daryl Turner, President
Oregon Coalition of Police and Sheriffs

Maintaining Our Voice in Salem

This past week in Salem saw more behind-the-scenes discussions than public hearings. A big part of ORCOPS’ job in Salem is to go beyond the hearings and maintain relationships and negotiations with other public safety stakeholders.

Most pieces of legislation this session have a deadline coming up soon: they must be scheduled for a “work session” (meaning a committee will move for a vote on the bill) by the end of next week. There are a few exceptions (like the State budget), but most of the measures ORCOPS is watching are subject to this deadline.

On the one hand, we will likely see a lot of bad and unfriendly bills, such as the bill requiring drug testing police officers, miss that deadline and become “dead” bills. On the other hand, several bills ORCOPS is advocating for are also subject to that deadline, particularly bills relating to Brady list protections and citation comparisons.

ORCOPS has been negotiating with other public safety stakeholders as well as Legislative leadership to both move ORCOPS’ agenda as well as block bad legislation. For example, there has been a renewed last-ditch effort by some Democrats to make officers’ grand jury transcripts a matter of public record across the State (this is already practiced in Multnomah County but only at the discretion of the District Attorney), and ORCOPS has been working to prevent that.

Another measure, HB 3242, would require officers to electronically record all conversations with minors suspected of committing a crime. ORCOPS testified last week to the real-world impracticality of that measure, but there is now an effort by the measure’s supporters to find a compromise that would limit the requirement to more specific circumstances. ORCOPS’ lobbyist received an anonymous menacing phone call regarding this measure, which means we’re being effective!

Public pension “reform” discussions are still underway.  As the only representatives of local line officers and deputies on the pension-defending PERS Coalition, ORCOPS has been coordinating meetings with other coalition members.  If any law enforcement officers are interested in coming down to Salem to meet with legislators on this issue, please email info@orcops.orgto coordinate that with our team in Salem.

Lastly, the second (and at this point, last) step in the “End Profiling” effort, HB 2355, was passed out of the House Judiciary Committee on an 8-2 vote. As a part of that workgroup, ORCOPS approved the resulting legislation, which focuses on training and data collection.  The Legislature’s task force on profiling issues that was established in 2015 is scheduled to dissolve this year.

ORCOPS On The Front Lines In Salem

ORCOPS was active in Salem this past week, both pushing good policy forward and defending against bad policy.

The week started with a roundtable discussion organized by Senator Floyd Prozanski (D – Eugene), chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, to help determine the Judiciary agenda for the balance of the 2017 Legislative Session. ORCOPS represented line officers and deputies among a group that included Chiefs and Sheriffs, the Oregon Defense Attorneys Association, and the ACLU. While agreement among this group has been mixed on a wide array of issues, ORCOPS has built relationships based on mutual respect and candidness and works well with these stakeholders, even when strongly disagreeing.

SB 352, which would prohibit consent searches unless a person was specifically informed of their ability to refuse the search, will not be passing in the 2017 session thanks to the stalwart opposition of several law enforcement groups. We do expect the ACLU to develop an alternate proposal for future sessions, so it is important to remain vigilant.

SB 642, a measure pushed by ORCOPS that would prevent local agencies from using peer-to-peer comparisons of citation issuance to evaluate performance, is still under consideration. However, the Chiefs and Sheriffs associations have been given some time to consider what adjustments they would like to see in the measure. Those associations have suggested a simple ban on quotas, but ORCOPS contends that would be functionally meaningless without also banning peer-to-peer comparisons. ORCOPS is the only law enforcement group that has been pushing this measure.

The House Judiciary Committee held hearings on three measures last week that would drastically affect interactions with minors.

  • HB 2718 would prohibit officers from interviewing a minor until the minor had consulted with an attorney. The measure would not allow that requirement to be waived, even by the minor’s parents or guardians.
  • HB 3242 would require all custodial interviews with minors be recorded electronically, but does not provide any funding for equipment, nor does it provide for unanticipated circumstances. ORCOPS-endorsed Rep. Andy Olson (R – Albany), a 29-year veteran with the Oregon State Police, did an excellent job outlining the challenges of this measure, especially in rural areas of the state.
  • HB 3244 would prohibit officers from utilizing “deceit, trickery, or artifice” when conducting interviews. An amendment to that bill would even further prohibit officers from implying or suggesting that cooperation could lead to leniency. The measure is poorly defined, to say the least — no one was able to provide a legal definition of “artifice”.

Opposing the bills was only a panel of ORCOPS (representing line officers and deputies), Sheriff Jason Myers of Marion County (representing both the Chiefs and Sheriffs associations), and Kurt Miller (a DPSST trainer representing the Oregon District Attorneys Association). The panel pointed out that as “best practices” are organically moving in these directions, it would be better to allow local law enforcement agencies to develop these practices on their own rather than impose hard-and-fast statewide mandates. Subsequent discussions with committee members have indicated that these measures are unlikely to move forward.

ORCOPS also made sure to publicly back SB 712, which provides PERS time credit for officers who are injured on duty and receive workers’ compensation benefits. This bill fixes a serious inequity within tier-3 PERS (OPSRP) where someone injured on the job and collecting workers comp currently doesn’t receive time credit for the period between the injury and their return to work. ORCOPS joined with the Oregon State Fire Fighters Council and the Oregon State Police Officers Association to testify in favor of this. State Trooper Nic Cederberg and Fire Fighter Council member Peter St. John provided some riveting testimony that we hope will lead to the quick passage of SB 712. This bill and Rep. Margaret Doherty’s (D – Tigard) HB 2646 are identical, but SB 712 seems to be the one that will go through, with HB 2646 held in reserve in case it becomes necessary.

Finally, as PERS discussions continue, you can use this tool to calculate the hit on your PERS retirement under the so-called PERS “reform” bills circulating through the Legislature.

Stay tuned for more updates in the coming weeks on PERS “reforms” as well as resolution on profiling policies.

Stay safe out there.

Daryl Turner, President
Oregon Coalition of Police and Sheriffs

ORCOPS Legislative Update: Battling PERS Rollbacks And More

This past week in Salem saw ORCOPS step up to defend law enforcement officers as well as public employee pensions.

This session, several measures have been introduced that threaten to roll back existing PERS commitments already made to Oregon’s public employees. The Senate Workforce Committee held hearings on two of those bills this past week, with ORCOPS as the only law enforcement organization testifying in opposition.

In addition, for the third year in a row, the Senate Judiciary Committee held hearings on the ability of law enforcement agencies to utilize polygraphs for pre-employment screening. ORCOPS has opposed these bills year after year, and this session is no exception. This past week, ORCOPS’ testimony and face-to-face meetings with Senators helped to prevent SB 519 moving forward. But, because this is a priority of the committee’s chairman, continued success requires constant vigilance on our part.

Also this week, ORCOPS was the only law enforcement organization to support HB 2337, which increases minimum and maximum workers’ compensation benefits for permanent total disability. The measure passed the House floor and is now headed to the Senate.

ORCOPS has worked with legislators in both chambers to introduce legislation to improve working conditions for Oregon’s law enforcement officers. SB 642 would prevent law enforcement agencies from evaluating performance or disciplining officers based on a peer-to-peer comparison of citations issued. Although the Chiefs and Sheriffs are opposing the measure, ORCOPS has support from House Judiciary Chairman Jeff Barker (D – Beaverton) and Senator Lew Frederick (D – Portland). Although ORCOPS is opposing other bills sponsored by Senator Frederick, this is an opportunity to develop some common ground and establish a constructive dialogue. ORCOPS has also introduced HB 3365, which would prevent an officer from being disciplined solely due to their appearance on a DA’s Brady List. ORCOPS-endorsed Rep. Carla Piluso (D – Gresham) has sponsored this measure, and discussions are ongoing with other stakeholders as we chart a path forward.

Have a great weekend & stay safe.

ORCOPS in the mix as the 2017 Oregon Legislative Session Ramps Up

Before the 2017 Oregon Legislative Session opened on February 1, 2017, ORCOPS was hard at work addressing key issues that affect law enforcement officers in Oregon, such as profiling legislation, attacks on PERS benefits, discussions about grand juries, and “best practices” for body worn cameras. As this long 2017 session has ramped up in the past few weeks, our preparation has paid off, with ORCOPS being the “go-to” resource when legislators inquire about how certain public policy changes may affect the working conditions for Oregon’s law enforcement officers.

Last week was a great example of our diligence paying off. Our lobbyists from Prospect PDX were active during hearings on:

SB 496 and SB 505: Grand Jury Recordings
These bills would require recording of all grand jury proceedings. While the defense attorneys and district attorneys are negotiating methods of protecting sensitive witnesses (some law enforcement protections such as those for confidential informants are already included in the measure), ORCOPS was the first organization to bring to the committee’s attention a provision that would have permitted the public release of proceedings dealing with the conduct of a law enforcement officer. For example, if an officer’s use of deadly force in the line of duty is considered by a grand jury, the recording of the proceeding would be subject to public release after the grand jury issues a not true bill. During office meetings as well as to the full committee, ORCOPS stood fast in opposing a carve-out targeting law enforcement officers. (Even as an other law enforcement organizations offered their qualified support to the public release of such materials.) ORCOPS has been defending against this and similar pieces of legislation since the 2015 Legislative Session. We have been working directly with committee members to secure a set of amendments to the measure that will protect officers’ records from public release.

HB 2355: Profiling Data
This bill is the result of a long process that started with HB 2002 in the 2015 session. Since the very beginning of that process, ORCOPS has been intricately involved in ensuring that Oregon’s anti-profiling measures don’t impede law enforcement officers’ ability to do their jobs. ORCOPS maintains constructive, respectful connections with both sides of the aisle and bargained those relationships into a key position on the policymaking Law Enforcement Profiling Work Group. ORCOPS’s selected member has been the only member of the work group representing line officers and deputies. HB 2355 is the culmination of that group. The measure focuses policy developments on training resources and data collection, and is the result of a consensus-based process led by the Attorney General’s office. ORCOPS not only played a role in guiding that policy, but also maintained a close relationship with the interested legislators and the Attorney General herself before providing a nod of approval for the House Judiciary Committee earlier this month.

Protecting Municipal Budgets
Senate Bill 840 would have placed a cap on certain fees that cities receive from utilities, thereby having a detrimental impact on city budgets. While several utilities spoke in favor of the measure, ORCOPS—alongside a number of city government representatives—was the only law enforcement organization to testify against it.

We are also actively monitoring PERS discussions, including Senate Bills 559, 560, and 913. As the largest law enforcement representative on the PERS Coalition, we are advocating tirelessly to ensure our legislators honor the pension promises made to our members. The most popular of these so-called “reform” items include capping final average salary at $100,000; changing the final average salary calculation from a high three-year to a high-five year period; and redirecting employee contributions to IAP accounts to the general pension plan. From the standpoint of our members, all three are “non-starters,” especially given the sweeping, detrimental effect to existing PERS members and future law enforcement officers. The PERS discussions will ramp up over the next two weeks, and we’ll update you as these so-called “PERS reform” bills make their way through committees. Learn more about the real effects of these proposed changes to PERS at

Finally, we are actively tracking over 90 Senate and House bills, including proposed legislation on officer involved use of deadly force, issues related to workers compensation benefits, crimes against law enforcement officers, and retirement benefits for officers working at one of Oregon’s universities.

As always, we welcome any feedback from our member organizations about any legislation that may impact law enforcement officers in this State.

Stay safe.

Daryl Turner, President
Oregon Coalition of Police and Sheriffs

Legislative Update

The Legislative Session is about half over, and ORCOPS is both making gains and defending ground. The “short” session (in even-numbered years) is limited to a little over a month by the Oregon Constitution. This means that a session that has historically been six months long is now squeezed into a month – although the number of bills that can be introduced is also limited.

This week, we’re seeing bills begin to switch chambers – that is, House bills will begin to be considered by the Senate and vice-versa. And ORCOPS is there to shepherd our bills and to protect against bad concepts.

In this session so far, ORCOPS has focused its efforts on a few offensive and defensive priorities:

Initially, House Bill 4087 was drafted to protect officers and deputies against discipline based solely on Brady list appearances. But despite ORCOPS reaching out to other stakeholders in October, opposition from some groups shortly before session ultimately dealt a mortal blow to HB 4087. Rep. Carla Piluso (D – Gresham), who sponsored the legislation, will continue working with ORCOPS on this issue.

With the core concept of HB 4087 not moving, ORCOPS worked with OSP and other law enforcement stakeholders in crafting an amendment to the bill that allows law enforcement agencies to protect an officer’s personal information in the event that there is a credible threat to the officer or their family. The measure passed the House Floor on Wednesday on a 55-3 vote and now heads to the Senate.

A form of SB 1550 was introduced (but not passed) in 2015, and provided that 1) all grand jury proceedings were to be recorded, and 2) in the event of a law enforcement officer being the target of a grand jury but NOT indicted, the recording could be released to the general public. ORCOPS opposed the bill last session and worked with stakeholders to fix the concept this year. The bill now has added protective order provisions for victims, witnesses, and confidential informants and allows certain hearsay testimony when appropriate, and eliminates the release provisions for law enforcement officers.

For the second session in a row, ORCOPS is fighting a bill (SB 1555) that would allow law enforcement agencies to hook prospective employees up to polygraph machines. One supporter of the bill touted the “cost savings” of simply polygraphing applicants rather than doing a complete background examination. Despite the polygraph not being admissible in court (and despite numerous reports stating that the polygraph is not a reliable employment screening device), the bill passed the Senate earlier this week. ORCOPS is committed to stopping this measure in the House.

ORCOPS is working with the Association of Oregon Counties to support a measure that would allow counties to offer property tax relief to families of fallen officers by exempting up to $250,000 of a family’s assessed home value.

Last session, Multnomah County pushed SB 87, which ORCOPS believed would erode long-standing veterans’ preferences for hiring and promotion decisions by public employers. ORCOPS worked with the Bureau of Labor and Industries in order to block those roll-backs. This session, some Legislators and employers introduced HB 4096, which again seeks to “simplify” the veterans preferences policies. Although the bill is somewhat improved over the last version, it still grants public employers an incredible amount of discretion. Again, ORCOPS was in front of committee registering our opposition and blocking the bill until it is greatly improved.
Daryl Turner
ORCOPS President

In order to track what’s going on in Salem, go to and search for bills by using the links on the right.

2016 Oregon Legislative Session

The 2016 Oregon Legislative Session opens today. This is a short session that runs for just a month, versus the longer sessions in odd years that run for about six months. There will be less activity in this shorter 2016 session, but we’re still hard at work.

ORCOPS is actively working to pass House Bill 4087, which would prohibit discipline based solely on Brady List appearances. We’re communicating with the associations for the Chiefs, Sheriffs, and District Attorneys to get this passed.

We’re also keeping an eye on bad bills. In particular, we’re advocating to protect ORCOPS’ members from policies that roll back veterans preferences or single out public safety officers for unfair treatment in the court system. Our lobbyists will also actively monitor bills that address PERS, DPSST, and polygraph testing, among others.

We’re proud of what we accomplished in the 2015 session, and we’ll continue our hard work through active communication with legislators in this 2016 session. It’s our mission to make this 2016 session a victory for our members.

To stay up to date, follow ORCOPS on Facebook.

Daryl Turner, President

The Last Week of the 2015 Legislative Session

The Legislature is looking to make this the last week of the 2015 Legislative Session.  They will work throughout the Independence Day weekend in an effort to complete their business by Sunday, July 5th.  What that means for us is that our bills are starting to pass as the Legislature tries to finish up its business.  Here are a few of the ORCOPS-supported items moving this past week:

HB 2002, the profiling bill, passed the Legislature earlier last week and is expected to be signed shortly by Governor Brown. ORCOPS was very involved in its crafting, along with other stakeholders, advocates, and lawmakers. On Thursday on the Senate Floor, ORCOPS was specifically thanked for our work on this measure.

HB 2357, to allow officers to carry weapons while off-duty, passed the Legislature unanimously last week after several technical adjustments to address concerns with another part of the bill.

HB 2463, which will facilitate the removal of derelict structures from public waterways, was briefly in limbo when the Senate and House both passed different versions of the bill. ORCOPS attended the “conference committee” hearing (where both House members and Senators try to work out a compromise), and urged legislators to come to a consensus. The House opted to adopt the Senate version and the bill is now on its way to the Governor’s desk.

And HB 2621, which authorizes the City of Portland to operate photo radar on certain high-crash corridors, passed the Senate late last week after a close House vote lastTuesday.

In terms of other bills, SB 822 (providing for recording of grand jury proceedings) is not moving this session. ORCOPS opposed this bill because there is a clause that subjects police officers’ proceedings to special release provisions that the general public is not subject to. We believe this creates a double-standard. However, this concept will probably be re-attempted next year. We have reached out to supporters of the measure in the hopes that the 2016 version will not include that double standard.

It’s been a banner first Legislative Session for ORCOPS, but there’s still a lot of ground to cover.  As the 2015 session winds down we’re already planning for 2016 and beyond!

Daryl Turner, President

Oregon Legislature Wrapping Up

You can tell that the Legislature is getting closer to wrapping up session: they’ve started shutting down committees. On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee and the House Veterans and Emergency Preparedness Committee both wrapped up their business and had their last meetings of the session. Other committees will follow shortly, because with a few exceptions, all bills need to be out of committee by the end of the week.

That means Senate Bill 87, which would have chipped away at veterans’ preferences, is officially dead for this session. (Even though the committee will probably continue to discuss “clarifying” the law and may have a different version introduced in 2016.)

Meanwhile, House Bill 2357, allowing off-duty officers the ability to carry their weapons, is on its way to the Senate floor with a unanimous recommendation from Senate Judiciary. Also heading to the Senate floor is House Bill 2571, which establishes body camera standards – and still includes ORCOPS’ preferred amendments.

House Bill 2704 would allow individuals to record on-duty police officers and was improved earlier this week to prohibit long-range or surreptitious recording. That bill, with those amendments, is heading to the Senate floor for a vote as well.

Two bills supported by ORCOPS are on their way to Governor Brown’s desk to be signed into law: First is House Bill 2208, the public records loophole fix. Once signed, this bill will take effect immediately. Law enforcement can also contact their county to request that their personal information remain exempt from public records requests. Stop by the ORCOPS website to learn more >>> Protect Your Personal Information.

Governor Brown will also sign Senate Bill 943, which provides that a county cannot charge extra fees to a non-resident officer who registers his or her vehicle at a precinct address. However, because the Legislature did not declare an “emergency” with regard to this policy, we can expect it to take effect January 1, 2016.

ORCOPS is still working on several bills that will likely pose a threat right up until the final days. You may recall Senate Bills 822 and 871, both of which contain some acceptable and some unacceptable provisions regarding grand jury processes. These bills are in the Joint Ways & Means Committee, and as such are exempt from most deadlines. However, the Legislature must wrap up ALL business by July 11 – according to the Oregon Constitution. (Although it’s more likely to end a week or so earlier.)

Daryl Turner, President

New Legislation Spearheaded by ORCOPS


Several weeks ago, ORCOPS was made aware of a concerning development regarding the disclosure of officers’ personal information. A local paper submitted a public records request for officer information, including dates of birth and social security information. Ordinarily, this material would be protected from disclosure, but the request was made to the Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST), and there was ambiguity over whether the information was exempt from the request. The Department of Justice ordered (some of) the material released, but DPSST is currently fighting that order in court.

In the meantime, ORCOPS jumped into action in Salem in order to close this loophole. Because the Legislative Session was already in full swing, ORCOPS’ staff and lobbyist worked to identify several bills that could be amended with a simple fix to closing the loophole. We then worked through the State House and Senate Judiciary Committees to amend House Bill 2208.  That bill passed the Legislative process yesterday, along with our amendments. It will become effective once it is signed by Governor Brown.

ORCOPS took action immediately because this loophole would have potentially allowed individuals to obtain officer dates of birth. That information could then be used to obtain an officer’s home address and household information from the voter registration database. Our quick efforts means this loophole was closed in about a month.


Under existing laws, counties of residence shield public safety officers’ home addresses and telephone information from public records requests, but this can only be done at the request of the officer. In addition to our work in Salem, ORCOPS urges officers to use these existing tools to protect their information. Ask your local county Assessor and Clerk to protect your personal information in voter registration and property records.

To find your county contact information, go to >>> ORCOPS: Protect Your Personal Information

Daryl Turner, President