Chris Lehman

Salem Correspondent

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 is a native of rural Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. He was born in the upstairs bedroom of his grandmother's house, and grew up in a 230-year-old log cabin in the woods. Chris traces his interest in journalism to his childhood, when his parents threatened to take away his newspaper if he didn’t do his chores.

Landlords in Oregon have almost unlimited power to kick out tenants at any time. Now, as they grapple with a statewide housing crisis, state lawmakers are considering a measure that would require property owners to give a reason for issuing an eviction.

That would allow a tenant to fight the notice in court. And if landlords don't give a reason, the tenants would have three months to leave -- and landlords would have to help pay for the move.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown traveled to Washington, D.C., this week to lobby against the Republican health care bill designed to replace the Affordable Care Act.

Oregon students would learn more about the history of ethnic and social minorities under a measure being considered by state lawmakers.

Education advocates made their case for increased school funding in front of Oregon lawmakers Thursday. The subcommittee that focuses on education heard testimony from people who want lawmakers to boost K-12 funding from the $7.8 billion proposed in a preliminary budget framework.

Oregon lawmakers are considering a measure that would let state workers keep the frequent flyer miles they earn while traveling on official business. The measure passed the Senate Tuesday.

Supporters of a voter-approved ballot measure on high school education are pressing hard for Oregon lawmakers to fully fund the initiative. But the state's budget shortfall makes that far from certain.

The mortgage interest tax deduction collectively saves Oregonians about a $500 million per year on their state income taxes. But Oregon lawmakers are considering scaling it back.

The measure under consideration would still allow the deduction for many taxpayers but would end it for higher income households.

Oregon lawmakers are considering a measure that would let children age 12 and older in foster care switch case workers. The bill would require the Oregon Department of Human Services to assign the child a new case worker within 15 days of the request.

Oregon lawmakers are once again debating whether testimony in front of grand juries should be recorded. It's not the first time the proposal has surfaced.

Oregon politicians would have to tell the truth on the statements they file in the voters pamphlet under a measure being considered at the state legislature.

Oregon law enforcement agencies would have to track the race and sex of everyone they initiate contact with under a measure being considered at the state Capitol.

The case of the Christian bakers from Gresham, Oregon, who refused to make a wedding cake for two women reached the Oregon Court of Appeals Thursday.

With Oregon’s biggest cities in a housing crunch, lawmakers are considering a measure that would require landlords to give specific reasons for evicting a tenant.

An Oregon court will hear arguments Thursday in a case involving a bakery owner who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple.

Right now people who want to cast a ballot in Oregon have to register at least three weeks in advance. But a state senator wants voters to be able to register right up until one day before an election.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is urging the Trump administration to view marijuana as an economic opportunity. Her comments came as Attorney General Jeff Sessions hinted Tuesday at a federal crackdown on recreational cannabis.

Transgender people in Oregon would have an easier way to change their identity on government documents under a bill being considered by Oregon lawmakers.

Oregon lawmakers are considering a measure that would make it illegal to check your social media feeds while you're behind the wheel. A House panel takes up the bill Monday afternoon.

Oregon's budget gap is a bit smaller than previously anticipated. State economists updated their revenue projections Wednesday for the upcoming two-year spending plan.

Another gun control debate is brewing in the Oregon Legislature.This year's high-profile gun legislation would attempt to close what supporters of the measure call two loopholes.

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