All Issues and News

Welcome to the OFIR Issues and News page.  All issue and news articles are consolidated here for viewing. 

New immigration bill has more waivers and exceptions per page than Obamacare
The Daily Caller

“The revised [Gang of Eight] 867-page bill contains multiple changes from the first 844-page version, released April 18, but Democrats have not announced any delay to the committee review of the complex bill that begins next week. The bill includes roughly 1.14 waivers or exemptions per page. By comparison, the 2,409-page Obamacare law includes 0.78 waivers and exemptions per page… NumbersUSA has estimated that 33 million extra people would be able to apply to live in the United States because of the immigration bill, under the terms of the original draft.”

The Senate’s “Gang of...

Bill allowing four-year driver's cards passes Oregon House
Statesman Journal

Thousands of Oregonians will be allowed to drive with four-year driver’s cards, instead of regular eight-year licenses, under a bill that won final legislative approval today.

The House voted 38-20 to pass Senate Bill 833, which goes to Gov. John Kitzhaber for his signature at a May Day rally Wednesday on the Capitol steps. The bill would take effect Jan. 1, 2014.

A similar bill two years ago failed to advance in the Legislature.

This time, however, it was backed by Kitzhaber and major business groups such as Associated Oregon Industries, Oregon Business...

Oregon Senate approves ‘driver card’ for immigrants
The Register-Guard

SALEM — After a three-­minute floor discussion that conveyed none of the often-virulent opposition to the policy, the Oregon Senate on Tuesday approved a bill that would create a new short-term driver’s license, or “driver card,” for illegal immigrants.

Senate Bill 833 passed on a 20-7 vote, with six GOP senators joining 14 Democrats in support. The seven “no” votes came from Republicans but — somewhat unusual for such a high-profile issue — none of them took the floor to explain their opposition. Three lawmakers were excused.

The bill now heads directly to the House floor...

Keizer man arrested in DUII crash identified, has ICE hold
StatesmanJournal.com

The man who allegedly caused a power outage for more than 1,000 Pacific Power users after he crashed into a light pole south of Aumsville Saturday night has been identified by the Marion County Sheriff’s Office.

Juan Carlos Bravo-Fernandez, 24, of Keizer, was arrested on DUII charges and criminal mischief. His bail on those charges was set at $15,000 but because he has an ICE hold, he will not be released on bail, said Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Don Thomson.

Bravo-Fernandez is scheduled to appear in Marion County Court at 3 p.m. today.

The Sheriff’s Office received...

Kingpin behind Ice Breaker 2 drug enterprise pleads guilty
gazettetimes.com

A man who investigators described as the kingpin of the county’s second-largest known drug operation has entered a plea of guilty as part of a negotiated agreement with the prosecution.

Rogelio Gonzalez-Martinez, 37, of Lebanon, pleaded guilty in Benton County Circuit Court on Monday to one count of racketeering and to five counts related to dealing methamphetamine. Dismissed in exchange were remaining charges of racketeering and of dealing meth, cocaine and heroin.

His sentencing hearing has not yet been scheduled.

Prosecutors from the Benton County District Attorney...

Debate on immigrant licenses gets personal
StatesmanJournal.com

A two-hour debate Thursday on issuing state driver’s licenses without proof of legal presence got personal for both sides.

Mariana Alvarez Flores, a Salem farm worker and mother of three, told lawmakers in Spanish through a translator she doesn’t like driving without a license but she currently has no other option.

“In my case, I’m unable to take my children safely to their doctor’s appointments, to school and to the babysitter,” she told lawmakers during a public hearing.

By getting a short-term license, under Senate Bill 833, supporters argued it would create safer...

Driver’s license bill likely to prevail
The legislation granting the permits to immigrants has bipartisan support
The Eugene Register Guard

SALEM — At the urging of immigrant rights groups, several significant business associations and Gov. John Kitzhaber, lawmakers appear likely to approve a bipartisan bill this session that would create a new short-term driving license for illegal immigrants.

Proponents believe the concept is grounded in realism, allowing a population that already lives and works in Oregon to drive legally and with insurance, until various immigration-related issues are comprehensively addressed at the federal level.

But that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of Oregonians who have a visceral...

Man gets 3 years for sex crimes
democratherald.com

An Albany man was sentenced to nearly three years in prison for sex crimes on Thursday in Linn County Circuit Court.

Miguel Lopez-Garcia, 36, pleaded no contest to attempted first-degree unlawful sexual penetration and attempted first-degree sexual abuse.

He will face deportation after he serves his sentence.

According to prosecutor Coleen Cerda, the adolescent victim was a family friend and staying at Lopez-Garcia’s house at the time of the crimes, in March 2010.

Cerda said the victim went into Lopez-Garcia’s room to get a treat, and he grabbed her, threw her...

Cops bust two drug mules on the same bus
Working on tips, MADGE officers arrest two men unknown to each other but carrying large amounts of heroin and meth
Mail Tribune

In what police are calling a startling coincidence, two men with no connection to each other were arrested in Jackson County last week on the same northbound bus, both allegedly hauling pounds of heroin and methamphetamine.

Medford Drug and Gang Enforcement officials said the men were not working with each other. They just happened to get on the same bus in California with bags full of drugs, MADGE Lt. Brett Johnson said.

"We have no reason to believe these two were working with each other because the packaging was totally different and so were the drugs," Johnson said. "It'...

69% Favor Use of U.S. Military on Border to Keep Mexican Drug Violence Out
Rasmussen Report

Voters remain more concerned about Mexican drug violence coming to this country than they are about illegal immigration, and most favor use of the U.S. military on the border to prevent it. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 34% of Likely U.S. Voters are more concerned about illegal immigration. Fifty-seven percent (57%) worry more about drug violence. (To see survey question wording, click here.) Those figures are little changed from four years ago.

The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on April 3-4, 2013 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin...

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