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Oregon State Senate

NameOregon State Senate
LegislatureOregon Legislative Assembly
Coa PicOregon state seal.png
Term LimitsNone
New SessionFebruary 1, 2011
Session RoomOregonSenateChambersCenter.jpg
House TypeUpper house
Leader1 TypePresident of the Senate
Leader1Peter Courtney
Election1January 13, 2003
Leader2 TypePresident pro Tempore
Leader2Ginny Burdick
Election2January 10, 2011
Leader3 TypeMajority Leader
Leader3Diane Rosenbaum
Election3January 10, 2011
Leader4 TypeMinority Leader
Leader4Ted Ferrioli
Election4January 8, 2007
Term Length4 years
AuthorityArticle IV, Oregon Constitution
Salary$21,612/year + per diem
Political Groups1Democratic Party (16)
Republican Party (14)
Last Election1November 2, 2010
(16 seats)
Next Election1November 6, 2012
(14 seats)
RedistrictingLegislative Control
Meeting PlaceState Senate Chamber
Oregon State Capitol
Salem, Oregon

     Home | Legislature | Oregon State Senate

The Oregon State Senate is the upper house of the state-wide legislature for the U.S. state of Oregon. Along with the lower chamber Oregon House of Representatives it makes up the Oregon Legislative Assembly. There are 30 members of the State Senate, representing 30 districts across the state, each with a population of 114,000. The State Senate meets at the Oregon State Capitol in Salem.

Oregon State Senators serve four year terms without term limits. In 2002, the Oregon Supreme Court struck down the decade-old Oregon Ballot Measure 3, that had restricted State Senators to two terms (eight years) on procedural grounds.

Like certain other upper houses of state and territorial legislatures and the federal U.S. Senate, the State Senate can confirm or reject gubernatorial appointments to state departments, commissions, boards, and other state governmental agencies.

The current Senate President is Peter Courtney of Salem.

Oregon, along with Arizona, Maine, and Wyoming, is one of the four U.S. states to have abolished the Office of the Lieutenant Governor, a position which for most upper houses of state legislatures and indeed for the U.S. Congress (with the Vice President) is the head of the legislative body and holder of the casting vote in the event of a tie. Instead, a separate position of Senate President is in place, removed from the state executive branch. If the chamber is tied, legislators must devise their own methods of resolving the impasse. In 2002, for example, Oregon's state senators entered into a power sharing contract whereby Democratic senators nominated the Senate President while Republican senators chaired key committees.

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