May 10,2007 00:00
Legislation will provide more time for counties to process thousands of claims, ensure protection of land and taxpayer dollars
The Oregon Senate on Wednesday passed House Bill 3546, an extension of the timeline for counties and the state to process claims under Ballot Measure 37. The extension will give public entities an additional 360 days to process claims, many of which were filed within the last five weeks of the filing deadline.
“This extension will allow the counties and state the time they need to address these claims,” said Senator Floyd Prozanski (D-Eugene). “There is an enormous backlog and these counties are desperate for more time to make sure every claim is treated fairly.”
Without an extension on the timeline, state and local government would be exposed to the cost of defending thousands of claims without the opportunity to make sure claims are accurate. This could result in the loss of taxpayer dollars and create undeserving developments. It is estimated that the state would not be able to review and process over 2,000 claims without the extension.
“This bill provides relief for our county partners and allows them to process claims thoroughly,” said Senator Betsy Johnson (D-Scappoose).
Under current Measure 37 law, the claimant’s rights are personal and are lost if the claimant passes away during the review of the claim. House Bill 3546 fixes this problem.
“This legislation will allow heirs of the claimant to step into the shoes of the claimant if she or he passes away before action is taken on the claim,” said Senator Kurt Schrader (D-Canby).
House bill 3546 now moves to the Governor’s desk for his signature.