Dirk VanderHart covers Oregon politics and government for OPB. Before barging onto the radio in 2018, he spent more than a decade as a newspaper reporter—much of that time reporting on city government for the Portland Mercury. He’s also had stints covering chicanery in Southwest Missouri, the wilds of Ohio in Ohio, and all things Texas on Capitol Hill.
Dirk’s byline has appeared in USA Today, The New York Times, The Houston Chronicle, The Columbus Dispatch, The Oregonian, and more. He’s got a journalism degree from Michigan State University.
Send Dirk the best story ideas.
Senate Bill 1008, which would scale back strict mandatory sentences on juvenile offenders, needed support from two-thirds of senators to pass. It barely made it.
The House speaker said Monday that a plan released by Gov. Kate Brown last week doesn't do enough to protect all public employers in Oregon from ballooning pension payments.
Julia Brim-Edwards was an obvious choice to help new Secretary of State Bev Clarno take office, but her presence also raised questions.
Inclusion coordinator Larry Morgan and liaison to the State Board of Education Kim Sordyl are the latest to depart, the Secretary of State's office now led by Bev Clarno.
Roughly halfway through the 2019 Oregon legislative session, April 9 marked the last day most bills could either be moved out of committee or shelved for another year.
The hearing was the first time the full Senate heard the proposal to change how Oregon handles presidential elections. It passed easily.
The proposal is a major feature of Gov. Kate Brown's plan for funding the state's Medicaid program. It could also lead to a rematch of a 2007 ballot measure.
Sen. Floyd Prozanski is once again proposing making the "Idaho stop" legal in Oregon.
Security in the state Capitol was extra tight this week as lawmakers considered whether to expand the state’s gun control laws.
A swearing-in ceremony marked Bev Clarno's first public appearance since being appointed Oregon secretary of state by Gov. Kate Brown last week.
The first hearing on Senate Bill 1013 drew overwhelming support, but its future is unclear.
Bev Clarno, 83, former speaker of the Oregon House, is Gov. Kate Brown's choice to fill in for late Secretary of State Dennis Richardson.
A package of bills with high-profile support would limit how people who committed crimes as juveniles could be placed in the adult prison system.
After 12 years of debate, Senate President Peter Courtney says he'll allow a vote on the concept.
Under an agreement signed last year, Lore Christopher will work from home and retain a full salary until September. In exchange, she can't sue for age discrimination.
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The Oregon Department of Human Services said nine employees clicked on an email link on Jan. 8, 2019, that may have allowed hackers to access about 2 million emails.
A bill this session would increase lawmaker salaries by 63 percent. Backers say it's the only way to attract diverse candidates.