Job Creation & Economic Development
I know the only way we can truly stimulate the economy is by getting more Oregonians back to work. That’s why I have been engaged since day one on expanding economic development opportunities that allow businesses to thrive.
- Shaped, promoted, and helped pass the Oregon Investment Act that streamlines how investment dollars are distributed and increases access to capital that will allow businesses to grow.
- Promoted economic development and job creation in rural Oregon, where the economic downturn hit hardest, by selling nearly 20 land parcels to timber companies who will hire.
- Worked with the Oregon Growth Account board to invest more than $7 million in local start-up companies across the state.
- Made $282 million additional lottery revenue available for economic development projects through an innovative restructuring of lottery debt.
- Worked with the Department of State Lands to create jobs by increasing timber harvest on state lands with using sustainable forest practices.
- Changed public funds collateral requirements to make up to $1 billion in additional dollars available for businesses and families through locally owned banks.
- Committed nearly $200,000 as matching funds to boost investments planned at five Willamette Angel conferences around Oregon that connect investors with early state businesses.
Efficient and Responsible Government
I have made it a priority to raise the standard of ethical behavior in the Treasury, because I know a transparent and reliable government contributes to success.
- Increased transparency and civic participation within the State Land Board by holding town hall forums across the state so Oregonians can contribute to the decisions affecting their land and waterways.
- Saved more than $37 million in management costs for the oversight of public investments.
- Reduced Treasury’s electrical costs through “virtual servers.”
- Reformed how the State Treasury accounts for vital travel to monitor public investments, so that the expenses are public record.
- Reviewed the financial assumptions of the Columbia River Crossing Project and made suggestions that strengthened the plan’s safeguards for Oregon taxpayers.
- Joined a multi-state effort to develop a diverse database of potential board members from local communities for service on the boards of large public companies.
Affordable, High-Quality Education
I have had countless conversations with students and families that say college is simply too expensive. That’s why I’m taking steps to revive Oregon’s college savings plan—so every child who wants to can get an education.
- The State Common School Fund has climbed in value by more than 50 percent since market lows of February 2009 to $1 billion through strong management.
- Declared $5 million in earnings from the Oregon Growth Account for the Education Stability Fund.
- Successfully re-launched the College Savings Program, which reached a record $1.44 billion in January 2012.
- Cut fees so families get more financial mileage from their investments in the Oregon 529 College Savings Network.
- Implemented iPhone app for 529 College Savings Program so participants can actively manage and monitor accounts.
Protection of Oregon’s Fiscal Future
At a time when every dollar is precious, I do not take chances with Oregon’s money and your tax dollars. That’s why I have worked to reduce the state budget deficit and oversee careful investments of state pension and school funds.
- Stood strong for working Oregonians by lowering fees for those who receive public benefits on the state-issued U.S. Bank ReliaCard so they will have free and unlimited withdrawals at bank tellers, stores that accept debit cards, and from U.S. Bank ATMs.
- Successfully achieved an upgrade in Oregon’s credit rating from Moody’s and Standard and Poor’s from AA to AA+ through financial discipline and restraint, saving Oregon taxpayers $17 million.
- Restructured lottery-backed debt to save taxpayers money through lower interest rates and also to make more funds available for important targeted investments in economic development.
- Started the process of saving Oregonians tens of millions of dollars over the lives of bonds by refinancing more than $600 million in outstanding Lottery, Oregon Department of Transportation and higher education revenue bonds.
I have stood strong against bad actors on Wall Street to ensure Oregon’s assets are protected from fraud.
- Fought for Oregon’s schools and workers against securities fraud by putting Oregonians at the front of the line to recover millions from the Bank of New York Mellon Corp.
- Called on the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to create more transparency in corporate political activity by implementing new rules to require corporations to regularly report political spending.
- Joined with other institutional investors to use proxy voting to curb uncontrolled CEO pay, bonuses and environmentally damaging corporate practices of oil and coal-ash companies.
- Negotiated lower fees and higher transparency for private equity deals.
- Joined a class-action suit against Countrywide Financial Corp for securities fraud that cost the Oregon Public Employee Retirement Fund $14 million in losses.
- Sued Apollo Inc. and the University of Phoenix for defrauding investors and bilking students.
- Opposed the SEC proposal to limit citizen participation on boards of directors.
I place a high value on education at all ages, whether in elementary school or planning for retirement. Teaching the principles of money management is the best way to ensure Oregonian’s have a stable financial future.
- Joined the local JumpStart Coalition to promote financial literacy for Oregon’s young people.
- Launched www.GuardYourMoney.org to educate Oregonians about financial traps.