Southern Oregon funds in new federal budget include tribe, SOU, LaClinica & Curry Health


WASHINGTON, D.C. — Funds for several Southern Oregon programs are part of a new fiscal year 2024 federal government budget.

Oregon’s United States Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden today are sharing investments for Oregon families and rural communities in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2024.

President Joe Biden signed that act during the weekend, making it the final 2024 federal government funding package through Sept. 30, 2024.

The Senators said federal funding in the appropriations package supports investments across Oregon in affordable health care, manufacturing and enhanced emergency response coordination and other efforts.

For Southern Oregon, those efforts include Southern Oregon University, the Klamath Tribes, LaClinica in Jackson County and the Curry Health Network Hospital in Gold Beach.

Those groups are part of nearly $36,000,000 in federal funding for 28 community-initiated projects across the state outlined by Senators Merkley and Wyden today as included in the final fiscal year 2024 (FY24) minibus funding package.

They said the funds include $2,000,000 for Curry Health Network’s Chemotherapy Treatment Project for construction of a new chemotherapy clinic co-located at the Curry Health Network Hospital in Gold Beach where, “Chemotherapy is currently not available in Curry County, a coastal region, which spans 1,988 square miles, requiring patients to travel hundreds of miles for treatment.”

They note the funds were secured with support from U.S. Representative Val Hoyle of Oregon, whose 4th U.S. House district includes Curry County.

The Senators said $2 million is also set aside for La Clinica Acute Care Center’s expansion project to improve access to urgent care services for nearly 80,000 low-income, uninsured, and under-insured residents of Jackson County, writing, “This expansion will enable La Clinica to add twelve exam rooms, on-site pharmacy services, an ancillary lab for same-day specimen processing, and in-house imaging capabilities.”

They said $1 million for The Klamath Tribes will create a workforce training program for tribal members to have skills and tools to work in forest restoration, prescribed fire and wildfire management on the Fremont-Winema National Forest — noting, “With half the forest being former Tribal land, the program will help ensure The Klamath Tribes have greater access to care for known sacred sites within the forest.”

$500,000 from the new federal budget is planned for Southern Oregon University’s (SOU) Oregon Chinese Diaspora Project to support its comprehensive statewide inventory of Chinese heritage sites to document an underrepresented population in the settlement and development of Oregon. The project involves archival research, targeted field visits and community outreach, followed by archaeological investigations.

SOU Oregon Chinese Diaspora Project students dig site SOU image 2022

Merkley and Wyden said most of the key funding for Oregon in the legislation will support rural, coastal and underserved communities, “Together, the investments support programs and projects that build on the foundations working families need to thrive: housing, health care, education and good-paying jobs.”

Merkley is the only Oregon member of Congress serving on the Appropriations Committee which oversees federal budgets. He joined the committee in 2013.

Together, Senators Wyden and Merkley shared the following breakdown of Oregon funds included in the new federal budget, much of it applying to statewide services.