Oregon State Capitol (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)
Gov. Kate Brown on Tuesday signed a bill that allows the composting of human bodies.
THE ISSUE: Oregonians want a more earth-friendly way of dying.
THE BILL: House Bill 2574
WHAT IT DOES: Adds “natural organic reduction” as an alternative to cremation and burial for Oregonians after they die. The new method essentially composts the body of the deceased into soil within four to six weeks, according to information provided by state Rep. Pam Marsh, a southern Oregon Democrat who sponsored the bill.
WHY IT WAS PROPOSED: Proponents say there is a growing demand for green burials. Washington State has already approved similar legislation.
HOW THE MARION/POLK DELEGATION VOTED:
The bill passed the Oregon Senate June 3 on a 27-1 vote.
Sen. Brian Boquist, I-Dallas: Yes
Sen. Peter Courtney, D-Salem: Yes
Sen. Fred Girod, R-Lyons: Yes
Sen. Deb Patterson, D-Salem: Yes
Sen. Kim Thatcher, R-Keizer: Yes
The bill passed the Oregon House April 10 on a 44-3 vote.
State Rep. Teresa Alonso León, D-Woodburn: Yes
State Rep. Brian Clem, D-Salem (co-sponsor of the bill): Excused
State Rep. Paul Evans, D-Monmouth: Yes
State Rep. Rick Lewis, R-Silverton: Yes
State Rep. Raquel Moore-Green, R-Salem: No
State Rep. Mike Nearman, R-Independence: Excused
State Rep. Bill Post, R-Keizer: Yes
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT: The bill now goes to the governor for her approval.