I Demand Fagan Resign!


The secretary of State found herself sitting at a table with Vice President Kamala Harris, whose parents were Oakland-Berkeley Activist who had some contact with the Black Panthers.

In 1987 I graduated from Serenity Lane. My childhood friend, Nancy Hamren was there. She gave Chuck Kesey her grandmother’s recipe for yogurt that made the Kesey Family millions of dollars. She got me on the bus with Ken, and had us meet at other events. Ken Kesey died of alcoholism. I celebrated thirty-six years of sobriety April 7th.. I considered an intervention.

I demand Governor Kotek put me on the board of OLLC. It is an outrage how un-prepared many people – who could have done something miraculous – WERE! And still are! I find more hope at a AA meetings. How about sending all the staff to meetings at the Jesco Club?. Our Governor was just given $200,000,000 dollars by the taxpayers to deal with the homeless – and their addictions! She and I are shocked by how unprepared all but one county – IS! Why is everyone waiting FOR PERMISSION to do the right things – and they got millions of dollars to play with? Look what I have done with $900 a month! Are you all gone insane? There are addicts lined up to get into recovery. Fagan was getting her palm greased with big pot dollars.

Have you tried consulting the Master Augur of Springfield? I demand you all make a list of the professional people that were consulted – and put it on the Governors desk – NOW! Don’t wait for her to demand the list.

Here are the first three steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.

John Presco

1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol — that our lives had become unmanageable.

2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

When I went to see Laura, Alley Valkyries’ attorney, I was in my Augur outfit. I am trying

Fagan Allowed La Mota’s Co-Owner to Edit Language Describing Scope of State Audit

The Audits Division said it was not aware that the secretary of state had asked Rosa Cazares for input on the audit summary.

Shemia Fagan (Brian Brose)

By Sophie Peel

May 04, 2023 at 4:49 pm PDT

Records show Secretary of State Shemia Fagan used language proposed by La Mota co-owner Rosa Cazares to try to shape the scope of her office’s Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission audit, from which Fagan would later recuse herself to take a private consulting gig with Cazares’ weed chain.

Emails obtained by WW last week show that Cazares emailed an edited description of the audit to Fagan on Jan. 29, 2021. The Oregonian reported on the email earlier today—but until now, it has been unclear whether Cazares was proposing the scope of the audit to Fagan, offering edits on a previously written audit title, or something else entirely. WW had asked last week that Fagan’s office provide more context about the exchange.

Fagan’s office says it can locate no email or text sent from Fagan’s official device to which Cazares was replying. But on Thursday afternoon, after WW and The Oregonian submitted questions to Fagan’s office, spokesman Ben Morris said that Fagan likely shared it with Cazares outside of formal channels—meaning Cazares edited previously written language describing the audit’s scope.

“We have no records of the secretary sharing the draft plan outside the agency. However, based on the emails with Rosa Cazares, it appears as though Secretary Fagan did share the draft 2021-22 audit plan with Ms. Cazares for feedback in January 2021,” Morris said. “No agency staff, including [Audits Division] director [Kip] Memmott or the deputy secretary, were aware that the secretary sought input from Ms. Cazares.”

Morris says Fagan subsequently “included an updated summary and title of the OLCC audit in her audit plan” that used Cazares’ suggested edits. In other words, she took Cazares’ suggestions for what the audit should include and sent those instructions to state auditors.

It is another in a series of revelations about the influence Cazares, a major donor to Fagan’s election campaign, wielded over her office. Fagan would later take a contract job moonlighting for La Mota, the embattled dispensary chain. That decision, and its subsequent discovery by WW, would cost Fagan her once-bright political career. On Tuesday, Fagan resigned.

Morris added on Thursday: “Importantly, the summary provided by Ms. Cazares differs substantially from the audit’s final scope determined by the audit team.”

Below is a document, provided by Morris, that shows the evolution of the OLCC audit description language—and how Cazares’ input may have helped shape its final form.

Source: Oregon secretary of state’s office.

Read more about Fagan’s moonlighting here.

Fagan MoonlightingSophie PeelSophie Peel

Sophie Peel covers City Hall and neighborhoods.

Willamette Week’s journalism is funded, in part, by our readers. Your help supports local, independent journalism that informs, educates, and engages our community. Become a WW supporter.

Longtime OLCC Director Steve Marks Is Out

Marks put the agency on a strong footing after the rocky tenure of his predecessor.

A patio cocktail at Red Fox. (Aaron Lee)

By Nigel Jaquiss

February 01, 2023 at 3:57 pm PST

Gov. Tina Kotek has asked for and received the resignation of longtime director of the Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission, Steve Marks, sources tell WW.

Marks informed OLCC staff of his departure today. The move came as a surprise to OLCC staff and to key players in the industries the agency regulates.

Marks took over leadership of the OLCC in October 2013, when its business was strictly the sale and regulation of alcoholic beverages. When voters passed a recreational cannabis measure in 2014, the agency added the licensing and regulation of that product to its portfolio and later changed its name accordingly.

A former longtime aide to Gov. John Kitzhaber, and Kitzhaber’s final chief of staff in his first tenure as governor, Marks brought a wealth of Capitol experience to an agency that wobbled under his predecessor, Steve Pharo.

In the job, Marks won praise from lawmakers and the alcohol and cannabis industries for his steady leadership through the complexities of legalizing cannabis. He also acted with unusual flexibility during the pandemic, pushing to loosen regulations on takeout cocktails, residential delivery and curbside pickup from liquor stores.

Like the Oregon Lottery, the OLCC is tasked with delivering revenue to the state and to local governments. By that measure, the agency has thrived, regularly exceeding forecasts for liquor sales, by far its largest revenue generator.

In fact, liquor sales have grown so much that the agency has purchased some very expensive property in Canby to build a new headquarters and warehouse. The expense of that project caused some heartburn for lawmakers.https://ads.empowerlocal.co/adserve/;ID=181918;size=300×250;setID=523915;type=iframe;click=CLICK_MACRO_PLACEHOLDER

Critics Say the Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission Paid Way Too Much for New Headquarters Property

The expensive building project notwithstanding, Marks’ departure was unexpected, in part because he weathered the initial storm of agency head departures. Kotek signaled before winning election in November she would clean house at the Oregon Health Authority. Lottery director Barry Pack, a close ally of former Gov. Kate Brown’s, also announced his departure soon after the election, as did Andrew Phelps, director of the Oregon Office of Emergency Management. That led Marks’ supporters to think his job was safe. That turned out to be wrong.

One clue something was amiss: The budget Kotek released Jan. 31 included a proposed new 50-cent-per-bottle liquor price increase. That’s something critics, including Oregon Recovers, an advocacy group critical of the OLCC, supports and the liquor industry does not.

Oregon Recovers executive director Mike Marshall says he’s also surprised to hear Marks is out but hopes that is a sign that Kotek will push the OLCC to be more focused on public health than on maximizing alcohol sales.

Updated at 5:50 pm:

OLCC communications director Mark Pettinger confirmed Marks’ departure.

“The governor has indicated that she’d like to select a new executive director,” Pettinger says. “And a transition plan is currently being worked on. Further details will follow.”

Elisabeth Shepard, a spokeswoman for Kotek confirmed that the governor made a change but declined to comment further.Nigel JaquissNigel Jaquiss

News reporter Nigel Jaquiss joined Willamette Week in 1998. He covers politics.

Willamette Week’s journalism is funded, in part, by our readers. Your help supports local, independent journalism that informs, educates, and engages our community. Become a WW supporter.

About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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