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    Pendleton Lawmakers Try To Keep Blue Mountain Hospital Open

     by Christopher David Gray

    Sept. 18, 2013 — The Oregon Health Authority has laid out the timetable to legislators for the closure of the Blue Mountain Recovery Center, even as Pendleton lawmakers strive to keep Eastern Oregon’s mental hospital open.

    “The train’s already left the station,” Rep. Bob Jenson, R-Pendleton, told The Lund Report. “We got to find the sidetrack somehow.”

    Blue Mountain is set to stop taking patients next month and close for good Dec. 31. The hospital has a long track record, opening in 1948.

    Pamela Martin, the director of the Addictions and Mental Health Division, said half of Blue Mountain’s 60 patients will be ready for discharge, but any civilly committed patients who need further treatment will be transferred to two mothballed 26-bed wings in the new Oregon State Hospital in Salem.

    Those hospital wings are scheduled to open in November, with patients transferred over the following month. They were built the same time as the new hospital but have sat empty for lack of funding in the previous budget.

    After Blue Mountain stops taking patients, new civilly committed patients will be sent to either Salem or the Oregon State Hospital in Portland, but there is already a waiting list to get into state psychiatric hospitals. The Legislature has budgeted money for a new hospital in Junction City, near Eugene, but it won’t open until 2015 at the earliest.

    At Wednesday’s meeting of the full Joint Committee on Ways & Means, lawmakers accepted Martin’s report, but talk stirred of potentially keeping the hospital open and staffed until next spring so it could be turned into a geriatric hospital for the Department of Corrections.

    The prison hospital idea was pitched by Rep. Jennifer Williamson, D-Portland, who said it would be wise to keep the facility in place with its skilled workforce because the Department of Corrections needs to increase hospital capacity with an aging population, driven by mandatory prison sentences.

    Her idea was immediately grasped by Jenson and his Pendleton Senate counterpart, Sen. Bill Hansell, as well as Sen. Jackie Winters, R-Salem:

    “It’s a piece of the puzzle that needs to be worked on to come to fruition,” Winters said.

    If the hospital closes, Jenson and Hansell are concerned that the professional staff, particularly the nurses, would be cut to the wind and leave Eastern Oregon. Recruiting newcomers to move to Pendleton could be difficult with the state suffering a nursing shortage. Jenson reminded his colleagues that even the Oregon State Hospital in Salem has had trouble filling all its positions with qualified applicants. “If we lose the workforce, we’re going to have to restart,” said Hansell, who also learned that most workers would prefer to remain in Pendleton, according to the Service Employees International Union.

    In place of Blue Mountain Hospital, three new residential mental health facilities, each with five beds, are being built in Pendleton. One will serve as an acute crisis unit while the other two will act as transitional residential treatment homes, one for adolescents and the other for adults.

    “Every effort will be made to place people from Eastern Oregon in those two facilities,” Martin told legislators.

    Some Blue Mountain employees will find work in the new units, but with only 15 beds and less intensive care, the new residential treatment units will only employ a fraction of the people if the hospital closes. Others could find work in Salem. And some of the staff has already left voluntarily, requiring the state to hire temporary employees.

    “One of the major barriers is the physical quality of the [Pendleton] hospital,” said Martin, who toured the 65-year-old facility after assuming her leadership position in May. “It’s outlived its natural life span.”

    Martin said that it costs about $1 million a month to operate Blue Mountain, but the two new mothballed units in Salem will cost only $700,000 a month to run, she added, comparing them to empty floors of a hotel.

    If Blue Mountain Hospital were renovated, it would cost an estimated $11 million, and it’s uncertain if the hospital has significant asbestos insulation or lead pipes, which would increase costs exponentially.

    Jenson rebuffed the asbestos concern, noting that most of the facilities have undergone substantial renovations in the past 25 years. “If there’s a lot of asbestos in the building for these patients, maybe we have a good class-action lawsuit waiting for us,” Jenson quipped. Before it was razed, the state had been fined by the federal government previously for asbestos in the old Salem state mental hospital.

    Martin expects to report back to legislators with detailed information about the impacts of the closure on Pendleton, as well as the potential for its reuse as a prison hospital. But that could be too late to delay closure of Blue Mountain Hospital. Lawmakers may not be back in Salem until nearly Thanksgiving, just weeks before the last patients are moved across the Cascades.

    Source: The Lund Report

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    Nine Legislators Named 2013 Health Center Heroes by OPCA

    Portland, Ore., Aug. 6, 2013 – The Oregon Primary Care Association (OPCA) is honoring nine policymakers for their outstanding support of community health centers.

     OPCA will award its second annual Health Center Hero Awards to:

    • Five Portland-area legislators:
      • Oregon Senators Laurie Monnes Anderson and Elizabeth Steiner Hayward
      • Oregon Representatives Mitch Greenlick, Alissa Keny-Guyer & Jennifer Williamson
    • Oregon Representatives Peter Buckley, Nancy Nathanson, Val Hoyle & Jim Thompson

     Awards presentations planned to date:

    • Sen. Steiner Hayward and Rep. Greenlick – August 7 from 10 – 11 a.m. atCentral City Concern’s Old Town Recovery Center/Old Town Clinic, 33 NW Broadway, 3rd floor, Portland
    • Sen. Monnes Anderson – August 22 at 9 a.m. at Wallace Medical Concern, 124 NE 181st Ave., Portland
    • Rep. Keny-Guyer – October 1 from 10 – 11 a.m. at Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic’s Rosewood Family Health Center, 8935 S.E. Powell Blvd., Portland

     The remaining awards will be presented at times to be determined over the next two months.

     OPCA is recognizing Sen. Steiner Hayward for her long commitment to primary care.  She focuses on improving access to care for all Oregonians, particularly the uninsured.  Rep. Greenlick provided exceptional oversight of Oregon’s health care transformation process during the 2013 legislative session and remains a champion of the work of community health centers.

     Sen. Monnes Anderson supported key health care legislation during the 2013 session, including the OPCA-sponsored “care continuity” bill, HB 2132.  Reps. Keny-Guyer, Buckley and Thompson earned awards for strongly advocating access to culturally competent care.

     OPCA is recognizing Rep. Williamson for her focus on access to health care for all Oregonians, with an emphasis on Portland’s homeless population. Rep. Nathanson promoted accountability and transparency in health care reform, and Rep. Hoyle showed exceptional leadership in raising the profile of health care and health policy in her caucus.

    About OPCA:

    The Oregon Primary Care Association is a nonprofit membership organization of 31 community health centers operating through more than 200 sites across the state.  OPCA advocates on behalf of health centers at the state and federal levels and provides technical assistance and training to its members.  Our mission is to lead the transformation of primary care to achieve health equity for all.  For more information, see http://www.orpca.org.

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    Williamson called ‘Freshman of the Year’ in Willamette Week Legislator Ratings

    Williamson, 39, a smiley first-termer, has ably replaced Mary Nolan, who resigned her seat for an unsuccessful run for Portland City Council. A former First Amendment lawyer, Williamson spent a couple of sessions in Salem lobbying before running for office. That familiarity with the capitol is worth a lot in a culture proud of its traditions. As a rookie, Williamson chaired theJoint Ways and Means Subcommittee on Public Safety. “You’ve usually got to be here for 10 years to get that kind of assignment,” says an observer. “Freshman of the year,” says one of many admirers.

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    Oregon voters could get say on adding Equal Rights Amendment to state constitution

    SALEM — The Oregon Legislature may give voters the chance to amend the Oregon Constitution to include an Equal Rights Amendment for women.

    House Joint Resolution 35 would refer the issue to voters on the May 2014 ballot. It’s scheduled for a hearing Wednesday in the House Rules Committee. Proponents say it would solidify protections against gender discrimination.

    “When you have your rights expressed in the Constitution, they’re as secure as they can be,” said Leanne Littrell DiLorenzo, the president of VoteERA.org, which requested the legislation.

    Others say the amendment isn’t necessary and that elevating gender equality into the Oregon Constitution might make it appear more important than banning discrimination based on race, sexual orientation and other categories.

    A state Supreme Court ruling already ensures strong gender equality protections, said David Fidanque, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon. A national Equal Rights Amendment is needed because the federal government treats sex discrimination differently than racial and other forms of discrimination, he said, but that’s not the case under state law.

    The ACLU is remaining neutral on the state resolution after opposing two similar proposals introduced earlier this session. Fidanque said he’s not sure the state amendment would do anything new.

    “We have argued that it’s not necessary from the standpoint of the law and the constitution,” he said. “It will provide insurance in case the Oregon Supreme Court ever changes its interpretation” of the constitution.

    The state Constitution has not been amended since its passage in the 1850s to expressly protect the equality of the sexes, argues Littrell DiLorenzo.

    It’s the same state Constitution that “wouldn’t let women vote. Women couldn’t own property, and women couldn’t work the same number of hours (as men),” she said. “What we’re trying to do is to secure equality between the sexes, established in the Constitution.”

    July 6 2013

    Representative Jennifer Williamson,2013.

    The campaign to pass a state amendment coincides with a revived national campaign to pass a federal Equal Rights Amendment. That amendment, approved by Congress in 1972, never went into effect because it fell three states short of the minimum 38 states that needed to ratify it.

    In Oregon, similar legislation introduced earlier this session attracted broad support from Democrats and Republicans.

    “The Oregon Constitution is very protective of individual rights, much more than the federal constitution,” said Rep. Jennifer Williamson, D-Portland, who has a Ms. Poster advocating for women’s rights on her office wall. Williamson supports an Oregon amendment, which she said would be “a safeguard to ensure that Oregon’s higher standard of protection continues.”

    Rep. Julie Parrish, R-West Linn, said an Oregon Equal Rights Amendment is important in light of ongoing equity issues, such as the wage gap for women.

    “There are folks who say we’re already there, but we’re not there,” said Parrish, who sponsored a similar resolution earlier this session. “As a mom, I’ve got three boys, and what I’ve said before is that I want my boys to grow up and understand that women can do anything, and the little girl they sit next to in class could be their wife, their friend, their boss. It’s important to memorialize that.”

    By Yuxing Zheng, The Oregonian

    June 11, 2013 at  7:10 PM,

    updated June 11, 2013 at 11:06 PM

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    Oregon House votes to ease burden on hair and makeup artists

     Rep. Williamson sponsored bill to help Oregon entrepreneurs succeed in Oregon’s growing entertainment industries. Continue Reading

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    Committee assignments in Oregon Legislature don’t rock the boat

    By Christian Gaston, The Oregonian on December 21, 2012 at 5:45 PM, updated December 21, 2012 at 6:00 PM


    Rep. Tina Kotek, D-Portland, incoming house speaker, announced committee appointments for the 2013 Legislative Session. Faith Cathcart/The Oregonian

    Leadership in the Oregon Legislature announced committee appointments in the House and Senate late Friday, with few surprises in either chamber.

    While Democrats will be in a majority in both chambers, a shift from after the 2010 election when the House was tied 30-30, Democratic leadership retained Republicans on influential Ways and Means, Revenue and Rules committees.

    Rep. Tina Kotek, D-Portland, incoming House speaker, said at the end of last week’s special session that she was looking forward to bipartisanship in the coming session, during which Democrats will enjoy a 34-26 majority.

    There are Democratic majorities on all committees in the House, but Republicans still hold some prominent positions.

    Rep. Greg Smith, R-Heppner, will co-chair the Ways and Means subcommittee on General Government and Rep. Bob Jenson, R-Pendleton, will co-chair the subcommittee on Transportation and Economic Development.

    In a press release announcing the committee appointments, Kotek offered a similar sentiment.

    “There are thoughtful, well-respected legislators on both sides of the aisle who have important ideas to offer,” Kotek said. “Committees are designed in a way that will allow us to best tackle the challenges facing the state.”

    While there are a score of freshman legislators in the House and a leadership shift, the makeup of the Senate hasn’t changed much. Senate President Peter Courtney made small tweaks to committee appointments.

    Other highlights from the appointments include:

    • Sen. Bruce Starr, R-Hillsboro, will replace outgoing Sen. Jason Atkinson, R-Central Point, on the senate Rules Committee.
    • Sen. Elizabeth Steiner Hayward, D-Portland, and Sen. Bill Hansell, R-Athena, were appointed to Ways and Means. Steiner Hayward was appointed to fill the vacant senate seat of U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici late last year. Hansell was elected to the Senate in November.
    • Freshman Rep. Jennifer Williamson, D-Portland, will serve on Ways and Means.
    • Freshman Rep. Ben Unger, D-Hillsboro, will co-chair the Natural Resources subcommittee of Ways and Means.
    • The makeup of the Senate Finance and Revenue committee changed significantly following the retirement of Sen. Frank Morse, R-Corvallis, who had worked closely with committee chairwoman Sen. Ginny Burdick, D-Portland, on tax issues. Three new members will join the committee this session: Diane Rosenbaum, D-Portland, Brian Boquist, R-Dallas and Larry George, R-Sherwood.

    The Legislature will convene Jan. 14-16 for organizational meetings, with lawmakers returning to Salem Feb. 4, when the legislative session really gets under way.

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    Single Payer, Other Health Issues, Divide Candidates for House District 36

    Of the two candidates, Sharon Meieran has the support of the healthcare industry, while Jennifer Williamson has a more diverse list of contributors
    By:Amanda Waldroupe

    April 16, 2012—Sometimes it’s difficult to distinguish the policy beliefs of one Portland liberal running for office from another, but when it comes to healthcare, it’s relatively easy to drawn lines in the sand between Sharon Meieran and Jennifer Williamson.

    They’re competing to win the upcoming May 15 Democratic primary for House District 36, which includes parts of downtown and southwest Portland. Rep. Mary Nolan (D-Portland), who currently holds that seat, is running against Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz for Portland City Council.

    Whoever wins the primary is likely to become the new legislator since the district is a reliably safe Democratic seat even though there’s a Republican in the running.

    An emergency room doctor at Portland Adventist Health Center, Meieran was motivated to run for the House seat by “what [she] sees on the front lines everyday,” and is also president of the Oregon College of Emergency Physicians and a member of the Oregon Medical Association’s Legislative Committee.

    On the job, she’s seen people showing up in the emergency room with untreated mental and substance abuse issues, homelessness, and other problems that effect their health, and believes she lends “a unique perspective at a unique time,” given the transformation of Oregon’s healthcare system.

    Williamson, on the other hand, wants to make certain that Oregon continues investing in programs and services that offer opportunities. She’s worked as a lobbyist for Portland State University and more recently for Komen Oregon.

    A fourth generation Oregonian, she and her five siblings were the first in their family to attend college, and attributes that, in part, to financial aid from the state. “The state invested in us,” she said. “Kids and families don’t have that opportunity anymore.

    Where Meieran and Williamson differ most starkly is whether a single payer system—which would provide universal healthcare to every Oregonian — could be successfully implemented.

    “Single payer makes the most sense,” said Williamson because it assures that everyone will have health coverage and save the state money. Creating a single payer system would also generate healthcare jobs and minimize labor disputes.

    Williamson’s heard from teachers who’ve foregone pay increases over the last three years because of rising healthcare costs, yet another reason, she said, for a single payer system.

    If elected, Williamson’s eager to work with Rep. Michael Dembrow (D-Portland) to introduce single payer legislation, and is also planning a trip to Vermont to learn how that state has been able to create a single payer system.

    Nevertheless, she realizes that she’ll face a tough battle winning over her colleagues. “It’s a hard industry {healthcare industry} to come up against. People aren’t ready to take it on.”

    From her perspective, Meieran calls a single payer system “the ideal type” of healthcare system, but doesn’t believe it’s possible to achieve in Oregon. “It’s not practical or feasible…from an economic standpoint, provider standpoint, and every aspects of the delivery system.”

    In two to four years, it might be more realistic to think about such a system. “At some point we can get there,” said Merieran, but didn’t explain what that meant.

    The candidates also differed slightly on the Legislature’s role in coordinated care organizations, which will begin integrating physical and mental healthcare for 650,000 people on the Oregon Health Plan in August and could become the delivery system for the state’s school teachers and public employees.

    “This is the beginning of the process,” said Meieran, who doesn’t believe the Legislature should monitor CCO development, but believes it’s essential to provide preventive services and fund school-based centers.

    From Williamson’s perspective, CCOs “have to be held accountable. This is the system we’re saying we need in the state.”

    She thinks the Legislature should hold hearings and either change the rules or draft new legislation to make certain CCOs live up to their expectations while emphasizing prevention and integrating mental health.

    “I’m really focused on budget issues,” she said. “It goes back to the general proposition that when we invest dollars, we do it in the smartest way possible.”

    The myriad of problems currently faced by the healthcare system is “about healthcare finance,” she said. “It’s a budget issue, and figuring out the best investments for the best outcomes.”

    Merieran Campaign Supported by Healthcare Industry

    It’s obvious from the campaign contributions that Meieran is favored by the healthcare industry. According to ORESTAR, she’s received contributions from dozens of healthcare organizations, including Douglas County Independent Practice Association (DCIPA, which gave $1,500) and Doctors for Healthy Communities ($1,500).

    The political action committees of the Oregon Medical Association, Oregon Healthcare Association and Oregon Hospital Association, also each gave her $2,500. Other notable contributors include Regence Oregon and Chuck Hofmann, whose term on the Oregon Health Policy Board recently ended.

    Williamson, on the other hand, has a more diverse list of contributors, including the Oregon Business Association, Oregon Nurses PAC (which gave $5,000), Oregon AFSCME, the Oregon Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Planned Parenthood and numerous individual lawyers (Williamson has a law degree from the University of Oregon).

    Meieran said her contributions won’t affect her judgment or policy decisions as a legislator. Williamson disagrees. “That idea that it doesn’t matter is wrong,” she said.

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    Oregon Must Have the Courage to Lead on Universal Health Care

    By Jennifer Williamson of Portland, Oregon. Jennifer is an attorney running in the Democratic primary for HD 36 in West Portland. Jennifer is endorsed by Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon and the Oregon Nurses Association. For more information, visit JenniferForOregon.com.

    We hear a lot about rising gas prices, high food prices and, increasingly in Portland, rents that are out of reach. These are critical issues on the minds of my neighbors. But there’s another concern that isn’t getting as much attention as it deserves these days.

    As I’ve knocked on doors over the last four months across House District 36, I continue to hear from voters that they’re worried about rising health care costs. Despite what the national Republican assault on Obamacare would have us believe, the truth is that access to quality care has declined for thousands of Oregonians and health care prices are out of control.

    It’s a story Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum don’t want you to hear. The facts for our citizens are disturbing:

    -Each year, 540 Oregonians die from treatable diseases because they could not afford needed health care.

    -Last year 34,000 Oregonians in 12,000 families endured personal bankruptcies caused by medical crises. Most of these people had health insurance when the medical condition began.

    Every Oregonian deserves health care. But even though Oregonians already spend more than enough to get that health care, too many of us are left out and our families suffer.

    There are health care systems around the world and even in our own country providing better care to more people for less money than we do here in Oregon.

    With the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act now under review by the Supreme Court, it’s more important than ever for Oregon to take the lead for its citizens. It’s time for Oregonians to once again be pioneers. It’s time for Oregon to learn from other countries and other states.

    If we apply successful lessons to a new statewide, publicly-funded health care system, we can ensure every one of our citizens has access to the care we need. The truth is we don’t have to spend more, we just need to spend smarter.

    Oregon is unique. And not everything that works in other systems will work here. But we know we can do better – much, much better.

    It takes courage to change an industry that is consuming nearly 20% of all the money spent in our state, and reform a system that is decades old. It takes courage to create a new health care system that provides for us and our families throughout our lifetimes. But Oregonians are courageous people.

    When I get to Salem, one of my top priorities in the State House will be to work for a publicly funded, publicly accountable universal health care system that will provide quality care for every Oregonian.

    I believe Oregon simply cannot afford to do anything less.

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    Several Executives Leave Komen After Controversy

     March 22, 2012, 08:32 pm ET

    DALLAS (AP) — At least five high-ranking executives with the Susan G. Komen for the Cure breast cancer charity have resigned in the aftermath of the organization’s decision to eliminate its funding for Planned Parenthood.

    The departures include three officials from Komen’s Dallas headquarters, as well as CEOs of affiliate groups in Oregon and New York City. The chairman of the foundation also stepped down from his post, though he will remain on the board. Although some cited personal reasons, the resignations suggest that Komen is still in turmoil, even after reversing course and restoring the money to Planned Parenthood.

    Komen spokeswoman Leslie Aun said she could not speak to individuals’ reasons for leaving but acknowledged the effects of the controversy among supporters.

    “Obviously, we know some folks are upset. We’ve certainly seen that,” Aun said. “We know people have been upset by recent events, but most really do recognize the importance of our work.”

    The resignations began about a month ago. Chris McDonald, executive director and chief executive of the organization’s Oregon and southwest Washington affiliate, announced that she’ll leave at the end of April. She said her decision wasn’t “predicated by any one event,” but that actions by national headquarters affected her thinking.

    “Despite our deep frustration about the distraction that our organization headquarters’ actions caused, I was proud that our affiliate took a strong stand against the politicization of the fight to improve women’s health,” McDonald said in a Feb. 25 statement posted on the organization’s website.

    One board member for McDonald’s affiliate, Portland attorney Jennifer Williamson, rejoined the board after stepping down last month to put pressure on the national organization. She couldn’t walk away from the local Komen work to expand access to women’s health care, she said.

    “As a local affiliate we could push back on them but we couldn’t do anything about it,” said Williamson, who is also on the Planned Parenthood board and is a Democratic candidate for the state Legislature. “I did what I had the ability to do, which was resign from the board. But to support the mission … I rejoined the board.”

    News emerged in late January that Komen had decided to stop giving money to Planned Parenthood for breast-screening services because Planned Parenthood was the focus of a congressional investigation launched at the urging of anti-abortion activists. After a three-day firestorm of criticism, Komen decided to restore the money.

    Some Komen affiliates, including McDonald’s, were among those that publicly opposed the policy change that cut off grants for Planned Parenthood.

    In the days after the reversal, Komen policy chief Karen Handel resigned. She had opposed abortion as a Republican candidate for Georgia governor and had become a target of those angry about the decision to halt funding to Planned Parenthood.

    In Dallas, the three resignations were Katrina McGhee, executive vice president and chief marketing officer; Nancy Macgregor, vice president of global networks; and Joanna Newcomb, director of affiliate strategy and planning.

    McGhee announced in February that she would be leaving May 4 “for personal reasons” and because it was “time to make a change.”

    McGregor will leave in June, and Newcomb departed at the end of February. The Associated Press left messages Thursday for McGhee and Macgregor. Newcomb declined to comment.

    Dr. LaSalle D. Leffall Jr. also will step down from his post as chairman of the foundation’s board of directors as of March 31, but he will remain on the board, Aun said. His decision, which was finalized at a Thursday board meeting, comes as he is “stepping back a bit” from the board due to his responsibilities is his role as provost at Howard University, she said. Leffall did not immediately return messages from the AP.

    Dr. Dara Richardson-Heron, CEO of Komen’s New York City affiliate, said Tuesday that she will leave April 27. Her affiliate was also critical of the Planned Parenthood decision, but she did not cite that in a letter posted on the website, saying only that she wanted to pursue “new career opportunities” and that leaving “was not an easy decision.”

    Vern Calhoun, a spokesman for the New York affiliate, said Richardson-Heron was not speaking to reporters.

    Supporters of the affiliate called, emailed, tweeted and posted updates on Facebook about their concerns during those first days of February. But, Calhoun said, “things have quieted down considerably” since the decision was reversed.

    Nevertheless, the office decided to postpone two spring fundraising events because organizers were not certain of their ability to get donations in the “near term.” In their place, the New York operation planned to hold a free breakfast event for grant recipients, supporters, volunteers and sponsors, Calhoun said.

    Other Komen groups expect to carry on with business as usual.

    The Los Angeles County affiliate will hold its annual race this weekend. Executive Director Mark Pilon said participation numbers are steady.

    “We’re tracking right what we did last year and our corporate sponsorship is up,” said Pilon, who took the job only a month ago.

    Pilon replaced Deb Anthony, who resigned last fall. She told Los Angeles television station KNBC in February that she submitted her resignation notice in December “for a variety of reasons.” She said it was a coincidence that it came around the time Komen was in the spotlight.

    “There are several decisions that Komen has made in the past year that have led me to decide that my skills and talents no longer fit their model,” she said in an email to KCBS television. The AP left a message Thursday seeking comment from Anthony.

    Komen did not publicly announce its decision to halt the grants but conveyed the news to its 100-plus U.S. affiliates. The head of Planned Parenthood has said she was informed of the decision in December.

    Sandra Miniutti, vice president for Charity Navigator, said that the controversy is likely to affect Komen’s ability to raise money. Although Komen is in good financial shape, the charity may have to spend considerably more money to achieve the same amount as in the past.

    Her organization allows people to review charities on its website. Before the controversy erupted, there were fewer than 100 reviews of Komen. But afterward, that number grew to about 700, many of them negative, she said.

    Because of the way the organization “flip-flopped” on its decision, it angered people on both sides of the controversy, she said.

    Aun said the charity’s “donations and our support remain strong.”


    Associated Press writers Jonathan J. Cooper in Portland, Ore., Robert Jablon in Los Angeles, Russ Bynum in Savannah, Ga., and Jim Fitzgerald in New York City contributed to this report.