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Oregon to receive nearly $1 million from crypto firm BlockFi in unregistered securities settlement - 06/30/22

Salem – Oregon will receive nearly $1 million as part of a multi-state settlement with cryptocurrency financial institution BlockFi. 

Following investigations led by a group of state securities regulators and the SEC, the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation (DFR) brought legal action against BlockFi for violations of the Oregon Securities Law. As part of its settlement with securities regulators, BlockFi agreed to pay a total of $100 million, half of which would go to the SEC and the other half to state securities regulators. BlockFi further agreed to stop offering BlockFi Interest Accounts (BIAs) in the U.S., and stop accepting additional deposits from U.S. customers to accounts that were already open.

BlockFi offered and sold securities in Oregon without being properly registered. In addition, BlockFi offered and sold BIAs to the public. Through BIAs, investors lent crypto assets to BlockFi in exchange for the company’s promise to provide a variable monthly interest payment. Investors deposited cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum into accounts. BlockFi promised monthly interest rates of 6.2 percent, compounded each month with the possibility of earning up to 9.5 percent, depending on the type and size of investment. BlockFi told investors that loans were overcollateralized – having more collateral than is needed in order to reduce the risk to the investors – when, in fact, they were not. Approximately 24 percent of institutional digital asset loans made in 2019 were overcollateralized, 16 percent in 2020 and 17 percent through June 30, 2021. As a result, BlockFi materially overstated the degree to which it secured protection from defaults by institutional borrowers through collateral.

“Financial services powered by cryptocurrencies must be held accountable just like any other financial institution,” said DFR Administrator TK Keen. “I am happy with the outcome here and we will continue to monitor businesses that try to take advantage of Oregonians or do business here illegally.”

The settlement, which was finalized between BlockFi and DFR last week, orders BlockFi to stop offering or selling BIAs or any security that is not registered, qualified, or exempt to new investors in Oregon, to stop accepting further investments or funds in the BIAs by current Oregon investors, and to pay $943,396 to DFR. 

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About Oregon DFR: The Division of Financial Regulation is part of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, Oregon’s largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. Visit www.dcbs.oregon.gov and dfr.oregon.gov.​​

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Division of Financial Regulation logo
DCBS audits found RHEA violations with health care insurers (Photo) - 06/21/22

Salem – Oregon insurers failed to fully comply with the Reproductive Health Equity Act (RHEA) in several areas, the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation concluded in a report the division released today. RHEA requires health insurers to cover certain reproductive health, sexual health, and other health care services – including contraception and abortion – without imposing cost sharing.

The report, which summarizes marketwide findings, came after the division discovered variations in coverage on RHEA claims and indications of potential widespread noncompliance with the law – specifically the inappropriate application of cost sharing for some services covered by RHEA. This prompted the division to conduct an audit – called a market conduct examination – on RHEA coverage and the insurers’ application of the law.

Generally, violations included failure to implement claims adjudication processes that identify services covered, failure to pay claims according to the requirements of the law, misinterpretation of cost-share requirements, improper application of medical management during claims adjudication, failure to update claims adjudication systems resulting in improper consumer cost share for RHEA services, and outdated consumer and provider complaint handling practices. Not every violation was found at every insurer. 

Some insurers failed to provide coverage of certain benefits until 2020 or later, including preventive services covered by the Affordable Care Act. Examinations also determined that specified services required to be covered without cost share by RHEA were being violated. Those violations included abortion, anemia screening, contraception, pregnancy screening, sterilization, and sexually transmitted infection screening.

The division is finalizing insurer-level reports for public release. As part of that process, the Insurance Code requires the division to provide an opportunity for insurers to review and comment on findings in a hearing with the division. Once finalized, the individual insurer reports will be published and made available to the public. In the interest of transparency, the division is releasing this anonymized, aggregate report while individual reports are being collated. 

In 2017, the Oregon Legislature passed House Bill 3391 – known as the Reproductive Health Equity Act. Some services required to be covered by RHEA are also required without cost sharing as a preventive service under the Affordable Care Act. Health benefit plans, such as individual, small group, and large group, are subject to RHEA. Other plans, such as those offered by a self-insured employers and Medicare, and plans that provide limited benefits, are not subject to RHEA. The enacted provisions of RHEA were applicable to commercial health insurance plans issued, renewed, modified, or extended on or after Jan. 1, 2019.

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The Division of Financial Regulation is part of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, Oregon’s largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. Visit dfr.oregon.gov and dcbs.oregon.gov.

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Oregon OSHA ofrece nuevos recursos gratuitos para ayudar a empleadores a comprender y cumplir con la regla de protección de trabajadores contra el humo causado por incendios forestales (Photo) - 06/21/22

Salem – Debido a que la regla que aborda las protecciones contra los peligros de exposición potencial al humo causado por incendios forestales entrará en vigencia el 1 de julio, Oregon OSHA impulsa a los empleadores y trabajadores a usar los nuevos recursos desarrollados por la división para ayudar a comprender y cumplir con la regla.

 

Los siguientes recursos gratuitos están disponibles en línea: 

 

  • Curso en línea sobre el humo causado por incendios forestales: Este curso en línea está diseñado para satisfacer requisitos de capacitación que se encuentran en la regla de humo causado por incendios forestales, el curso aborda temas como mediciones de la calidad del aire, posibles efectos y síntomas en la salud, el uso adecuado de las mascarillas respiratorias con filtro y otras medidas de seguridad.

 

 

  • Hoja informativa sobre los requisitos clave para la protección contra humo causado por incendios forestales: Este documento de seis páginas destaca los requisitos generales clave  de la regla, ofreciendo un resumen fácil de leer acerca de lo que los empleadores y los trabajadores deben saber sobre la regla.

 

“Estos nuevos recursos reflejan nuestro compromiso continuo de anticipadamente proveer a los empleadores recursos que les ayuden a cumplir con la regla y a proteger a sus trabajadores de los potenciales peligros de los incendios forestales”, dijo Renee Stapleton, administradora interina de Oregon OSHA.  

Oregon OSHA adoptó las reglas del calorhumo causado por los incendios forestales en Mayo. Ambas reglas abarcan medidas de protección iniciales para trabajadores que dependen de vivienda proporcionada por el empleador, incluida como parte de las operaciones agrícolas. La regla del calor entró en vigencia el 15 de junio. Los Recursos para ayudar a comprender y cumplir con la regla del calor están disponibles, incluyendo el recientemente ofrecido plan para la prevención de enfermedades causadas por el calor y para descansos y aclimatación 

Ambas reglas se propusieron en febrero, luego de un proceso de desarrollo que incluyó sesiones para escuchar a los trabajadores y partes interesadas de la comunidad, aportes y revisión por parte de comités asesores de reglas, aportes de empleadores y partes interesadas del sector laboral. Las reglas se basan en requisitos de emergencia temporales que se adoptaron en el verano del 2021 luego de varios meses de participación de las partes interesadas y la comunidad.

La regla del humo causado por los incendios forestales incluye una variedad de evaluaciones y controles de exposición, capacitación y medidas de comunicación. La regla del calor aborda el acceso a la sombra y al agua fresca, las pausas preventivas para refrescarse y los planes de prevención, información y capacitación.

Tenemos más recursos disponibles:

 

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Oregon OSHA es una división del Departamento de Servicios para Consumidores y Negocios que se encarga de hacer cumplir las leyes de salud y seguridad en el lugar de trabajo. Oregon OSHA trabaja para mejorar la salud y seguridad en el lugar de trabajo para todos los trabajadores de Oregon. Para más información visite osha.oregon.gov.

 

El Departamento de Servicios para Consumidores y Negocios es la agencia más grande del estado en cuanto a regulación de negocios y protección a los trabajadores y consumidores de Oregon. Para más información visite: www.dcbs.oregon.gov.

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Oregon OSHA launches new, free resources to help employers understand and comply with rule protecting workers against wildfire smoke (Photo) - 06/21/22

Salem – As a rule addressing protections for workers against potential exposure to wildfire smoke is set to take effect July 1, Oregon OSHA encourages employers and workers to use new resources developed by the division to help understand and comply with the rule.

The following free resources are now available online:

  • Wildfire smoke online course: Designed to satisfy certain training requirements found in the wildfire smoke rule, the course addresses such topics as air quality measurements, health effects and symptoms, the proper use of filtering facepiece respirators, and other safety measures.
  • Fact sheet about the key requirements of the wildfire smoke rule: This six-page document highlights the rule’s key overall requirements, offering a reader-friendly summary of what employers and workers need to know about the rule. 

“These new tools underscore our ongoing commitment to provide employers with resources in advance to help them comply with the rule and protect their workers from the potential dangers of wildfire smoke,” said Renee Stapleton, acting administrator for Oregon OSHA.  

Oregon OSHA adopted wildfire smoke and heat rules in May. Both rules encompass initial protective measures for workers who rely on employer-provided housing, including as part of farm operations. The heat rule took effect June 15. Resources to help understand and comply with the heat rule are available, including the recently released sample plan for the heat illness prevention plan and sample plans for rest breaks and acclimatization. 

Both rules were proposed in February, following a development process that included worker and community stakeholder listening sessions, input and review by rule advisory committees, and input from employer and labor stakeholders. The rules build on temporary emergency requirements that were adopted in summer 2021 following several months of stakeholder and community engagement.

The wildfire smoke rule addresses an array of exposure assessments and controls, and training and communication measures. The heat rule requires access to shade and cool water, preventive cool-down breaks, and prevention plans and training.

More resources are available:

 

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Oregon OSHA, a division of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, enforces the state's workplace safety and health rules and works to improve workplace safety and health for all Oregon workers. For more information, go to osha.oregon.gov.

The Department of Consumer and Business Services is Oregon's largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. For more information, go to www.oregon.gov/dcbs/.

 

 



 


 

 

Oregon Prescription Drug Affordability Board (PDAB) to hold first meeting June 23 - 06/21/22

Salem – Oregon’s Prescription Drug Affordability Board (PDAB) will hold its inaugural meeting on Thursday, June 23. The meeting, which is open to the public, is from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. via Zoom.

Oregon’s PDAB was created under Senate Bill 844 during the 2021 legislative session with the charge of protecting residents of Oregon, state and local governments, commercial health plans, health care providers, pharmacies licensed in this state, and other stakeholders within the health care system in Oregon from the high costs of prescription drugs. 

The inaugural meeting will include adoption of board polices, the election of a chairperson and vice chairperson, as well as temporary procedural rules relating to rulemaking and records requests. The board will also go into executive session, which is closed to the public, where members will receive legal advice from the Oregon Department of Justice.

“The inaugural meeting is the result of a tremendous amount of work and dedication that went into establishing the PDAB by many advocates and legislators,” said Ralph Magrish, PDAB executive director. “The meeting will lay the foundation for the important work ahead of us in promoting meaningful change for Oregonians in the months and years to come.”

In the coming months, the PDAB will begin studying the entire prescription drug payment and distribution system and policy levers to lower the list price of prescription drugs. The board will make recommendations to the legislature and conduct drug affordability reviews on drug and insulin products that create affordability challenges for the health care system or high out-of-pocket costs for Oregonians.

The PDAB will meet in accordance with all Oregon public meeting and records laws. Registration for the Zoom meeting and meeting materials are available on the PDAB website.          

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The Division of Financial Regulation is part of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, Oregon’s largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. Visit dfr.oregon.gov and dcbs.oregon.gov.  

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Oregon OSHA lanza nuevos recursos gratuitos para ayudar a los empleadores a comprender y cumplir con la regla que protege contra las altas temperaturas en el lugar de trabajo (Photo) - 06/02/22

Salem - Como regla que aborda las protecciones contra los peligros de las altas temperaturas en el lugar de trabajo que entrará en vigencia el 15 de junio, Oregon OSHA alienta a los empleadores y trabajadores a utilizar los nuevos recursos desarrollados por la división para ayudar a comprender y cumplir con la regla.

Los siguientes recursos gratuitos están disponibles en línea ahora. Las versiones en español de las siguientes hojas informativas estarán disponibles muy pronto.

  • Curso en línea de prevención de enfermedades causadas por el calor: Diseñado para satisfacer ciertos requisitos de capacitación que se encuentran en la regla del calor, el curso aborda temas como signos y síntomas comunes de enfermedades relacionadas con el calor, factores de riesgo, cómo se mide el índice de calor y acceso a la sombra, agua potable y otras medidas.
  • Hoja informativa sobre los requisitos clave de la regla del calor: Este documento de cinco páginas destaca los requisitos generales clave de la regla y ofrece un resumen fácil de leer de lo que los empleadores y los trabajadores deben saber sobre la regla. 
  • Hoja informativa sobre las opciones de horario de descanso de la regla de calor para prevenir enfermedades causadas por el calor: Este documento de dos páginas proporciona una descripción general rápida y fácil de usar de la parte de la regla de calor que aborda las opciones de horario de descanso A, B y C.

“Estos nuevos recursos reflejan nuestro compromiso continuo de ayudar a los empleadores a lograr el cumplimiento de la regla del calor a medida que avanzan con sus operaciones”, dijo Renee Stapleton, administradora interina de Oregon OSHA. 

Oregon OSHA adoptó las reglas de calorhumo causado por los incendios forestales en Mayo. Ambas reglas abarcan medidas de protección iniciales para los trabajadores que dependen de una vivienda proporcionada por el empleador, incluso como parte de las operaciones agrícolas. La regla sobre el humo causado por los incendios forestales entrará en vigencia el 1 de julio. Los recursos para ayudar a comprender y cumplir con la regla sobre el humo causado por los incendios forestales estarán disponibles muy pronto.

Ambas reglas se propusieron en Febrero, luego de un proceso de desarrollo que incluyó sesiones para escuchar a los trabajadores y partes interesadas de la comunidad, aportes y revisión por parte de comités asesores de reglas, y aportes de empleadores y partes interesadas laborales. Las reglas se basan en requisitos de emergencia temporales que se adoptaron en el verano del 2021 luego de varios meses de participación de las partes interesadas y la comunidad.

La regla del calor aborda el acceso a la sombra y al agua fresca, las pausas preventivas para refrescarse y los planes de prevención, información y capacitación. La regla del humo causado por los incendios forestales incluye una variedad de evaluaciones y controles de exposición, capacitación y comunicación.

Tenemos más recursos disponibles:

 

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Oregon OSHA, es una división del Departamento de Servicios al Consumidor y Negocios, hace cumplir las normas estatales de seguridad y salud en el lugar de trabajo y trabaja para mejorar la seguridad y la salud en el lugar de trabajo para todos los trabajadores de Oregon. Para obtener más información, vaya a osha.oregon.gov.

El Departamento de Servicios al Consumidor y Negocios es la agencia de protección al consumidor y regulación comercial más grande de Oregon. Para obtener más información, vaya a www.oregon.gov/dcbs/.

 

 



 

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Oregon OSHA launches new, free resources to help employers understand and comply with rule protecting against high heat in the workplace (Photo) - 06/02/22

Salem – As a rule addressing protections against the dangers of high heat in the workplace is set to take effect June 15, Oregon OSHA encourages employers and workers to use new resources developed by the division to help understand and comply with the rule.

The following free resources are now available online. Spanish-language versions of fact sheets are on their way.

  • Heat illness prevention online course: Designed to satisfy certain training requirements found in the heat rule, the course addresses such topics as common signs and symptoms of heat-related illnesses, risk factors, how the heat index is measured, and access to shade, drinking water, and other measures.
  • Fact sheet about the key requirements of the heat rule: This five-page document highlights the rule’s key overall requirements, offering a reader-friendly summary of what employers and workers need to know about the rule. 
  • Fact sheet about the heat rule’s rest break schedule options for preventing heat illness: This two-page document provides a quick, easy-to-use overview of the part of the heat rule that addresses rest break schedule options A, B, and C.

“These new resources reflect our ongoing commitment to helping employers achieve compliance with the heat rule as they move forward with their operations,” said Renee Stapleton, acting administrator for Oregon OSHA. 

Oregon OSHA adopted heat and wildfire smoke rules in May. Both rules encompass initial protective measures for workers who rely on employer-provided housing, including as part of farm operations. The wildfire smoke rule will take effect July 1. Resources to help understand and comply with the wildfire smoke rule are coming.

Both rules were proposed in February, following a development process that included worker and community stakeholder listening sessions, input and review by rule advisory committees, and input from employer and labor stakeholders. The rules build on temporary emergency requirements that were adopted in summer 2021 following several months of stakeholder and community engagement.

The heat rule addresses access to shade and cool water, preventive cool-down breaks, and prevention plans, information, and training. The wildfire smoke rule includes an array of exposure assessments and controls, and training and communication.

More resources are available:

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Oregon OSHA, a division of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, enforces the state's workplace safety and health rules and works to improve workplace safety and health for all Oregon workers. For more information, go to osha.oregon.gov.

The Department of Consumer and Business Services is Oregon's largest business regulatory and consumer protection agency. For more information, go to www.oregon.gov/dcbs/.