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Governor Brown Signs Clean Fuels Bill Into Law

File photo. Oregon Governor Kate Brown signed a clean fuels bill into law Thursday.
Office of the Governor
File photo. Oregon Governor Kate Brown signed a clean fuels bill into law Thursday.

Oregon Governor Kate Brown has made what is perhaps her boldest political statement since she took office in February.

The Democrat signed into law Thursday a hotly debated bill that will make companies that sell fuel in Oregon reduce the carbon content of their products. The measure narrowly won legislative approval.

Environmental groups hailed the governor's signing, but Republicans said the new law will increase the cost of gas in Oregon. The GOP also said the law puts a transportation funding package at risk.

Republicans said they don't want to essentially pass two increases in the price of fuel during one legislative session. It's the second price hike -- the gas tax increase -- that would go to fund roads and bridges in Oregon.

But Republicans said that's now off the table. Democrats can't pass a gas tax increase without at least a little bit of Republican support.

Majority Democrats said they're still committed to finding enough legislative support to fund transportation improvements.

Copyright 2015 Northwest News Network

Chris Lehman covers the Oregon state capitol for JPR as part of the Northwest News Network, a group of 12 Northwest public radio organizations which collaborate on regional news coverage. Chris graduated from Temple University with a journalism degree in 1997. He began his career producing arts features for Red River Public Radio in Shreveport, Louisiana and has been a reporter/announcer for NPR station WNIJ in DeKalb, Illinois. Chris has also reported from overseas, filing stories from Iraq, Burkina Faso, El Salvador, Northern Ireland, Zimbabwe and Uganda.
Chris Lehman
Chris Lehman graduated from Temple University with a journalism degree in 1997. He landed his first job less than a month later, producing arts stories for Red River Public Radio in Shreveport, Louisiana. Three years later he headed north to DeKalb, Illinois, where he worked as a reporter and announcer for NPR–affiliate WNIJ–FM. In 2006 he headed west to become the Salem Correspondent for the Northwest News Network.