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Regulations are not set in stone. That's why we encourage the public and practitioners to get involved in legislation and rulemaking.
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Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS)
Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) are laws that have been enacted by a vote of the Oregon State Legislature. Statutes state the general intent of the law and who has authority to carry out that law. Any modifications made to a statute also require the approval of the Legislature.
Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR)
Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR) provide a more detailed "blueprint" that clarifies and implements state law. Administrative rules spell out the specifics of the law. Rules are required to be supported by a specific statute or law.
Rule changes do not require legislative approval. For more information on administrative rules, go to the Oregon Secretary of State's Oregon Administrative Rules website.
Significance of laws and rules
Why should the public and practitioners be aware and knowledgeable of state laws and administrative rules?
For the public, laws and rules apprise you of your rights as a consumer.
For practitioners, they provide a great "how-to" guide to help you comply with regulations created to protect the public's health and safety and to ensure the qualifications and standards of regulated professions.
State laws come first, then rules
In Oregon, elected state legislators create, revise or end (sunset) state laws annually in a Legislative Assembly.
When legislators meet, or assemble, at the Oregon Capitol Building in Salem on the second Monday in January of every odd-numbered year and in February of every even-numbered year, they review, discuss, and vote on proposed legislation.
If legislation is adopted by the Legislature and signed by the Governor, it becomes state law.
Once the final gavel of the Legislative Assembly sounds, new and revised laws must go through the rulemaking process to work out the details of how the law will be carried out and enforced administratively.
Public participation in the rulemaking process is important. Your input makes a difference.
- When new or revised administrative rules are proposed, a Notice of Rulemaking/Hearing is distributed to an "interested parties" list and posted to our website at www.oregon.gov/oha/hlo at least 28 days prior to the scheduled hearing.
- Notices alert stakeholders of proposed new rules and rulemaking that amends existing rules or repeals outdated or unnecessary rules.
- A Statement of Need and Fiscal Impact accompanies each rulemaking notice to communicate the need for the rule, the proposed action being considered, documents relied upon in determining the proposed action and the fiscal impact to individuals, small businesses or others that may result from permanent rule adoption.
- A fiscal impact includes any fee increase or decrease, or any additional requirements that may impose a direct or indirect cost to applicants or license holders.
HLO authorized to adopt rules
HLO is authorized to adopt administrative rules. We facilitate administrative rulemaking for all HLO-regulated professions.
A Rules Advisory Committee (RAC) may be appointed to represent the interests of a more diverse cross section of individuals, small businesses or organizations that may be affected by the rule. For additional information or to apply for a position on a RAC, please review the following:
Proposed rules are reviewed by the HLO's legal counsel and may be reviewed by a hearings officer.
How administrative rulemaking works
- If appointed, a Rules Advisory Committee will research and do fact-finding on relevant issues.
- Rulemaking provides an opportunity for members of the public, to submit written comment, and sometimes oral comment or testimony, in support or opposition of proposed rules.
- To facilitate an open, transparent review of the proposed rule, this public input is a public record available to all and, if oral, is provided at public meetings.
- Rules are permanently adopted only after consideration of all opinions, and only if the appropriate board or council, or HLO for rules under its sole authority, approve the proposed rules.