Gov. Tina Kotek speaks Jan. 9 during a joint session in the House of Representatives at the Oregon State Capitol.

When lawmakers convened Jan. 17 to kick off the 82nd legislative session, Speaker Dan Rayfield made it clear that he would be joining Gov. Tina Kotek in making housing and homelessness the top priority.

Rayfield called on lawmakers to deliver a package of housing investments in the first 60 days of the session and Kotek proposed an “urgent” $130 million investment to get 1,200 Oregonians experiencing unsheltered homelessness off the streets within a year.

Wednesday, the Oregon House got the plan halfway there, passing the $200 million Affordable Housing and Emergency Homelessness Response Package. It includes the $130 million Kotek requested.

The bills now advance to the Senate and then, if successful there, possibly become the first bills Kotek signs into law as governor.

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