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Senate District 20 representative since 2011 cites family concerns as the reason for his resignation

COURTESY PHOTO - Sen. Alan Olsen of Canby has announced that he will resign from office as of Sunday, Jan. 10.

After a decade in office, Sen. Alan Olsen will resign two years prior to the end of his term.

Olsen, R-Canby, has represented Oregon Senate District 20 since 2011. He cited family concerns as the reason for his resignation and will be moving to Indiana to be closer to relatives.

Olsen's district includes Estacada, Eagle Creek, Canby, Boring, Damascus, Gladstone, Aurora and parts of Happy Valley and Oregon City.

His resignation will be effective Sunday, Jan. 10.

"I would have rather gone 12 years. I really wanted to finish (the term)," he said.

In an interview with the Pamplin Media Group, Olsen was critical of the government's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, specifically with providing a vaccine and assisting those facing unemployment.

"The pandemic has caused quite a bit of consternation. I wish I could be there to help solve problems, but being in the minority, they don't allow us to do that," he said.

He added that 2020 had been "a tough time for everyone," but praised citizens in Estacada for helping battle the Riverside and Dowty Road wildfires during the fall.

"I'm glad Estacada was able to stand up and take care of themselves," he said.

Olsen cited passing bills in support of veterans as one of his most meaningful accomplishments while in office.

"I'm proud of the fact that I could help citizens in my district," he said.

In an email to colleagues, Olsen said the state and country "are in dire times."

"A quote from Benjamin Franklin stated that 'Those who would trade a little liberty for a little security deserved neither and would lose both.' Be careful in your decisions as the path you set upon could be very destructive for Oregonians. It is time for you to bring Oregon out of the cellar and back into the light," he wrote.

Per state law, Clackamas County and Marion County commissioners will appoint another Republican to fill Olsen's position. Commissioners must replace a resigning state legislator with another member of the same political party within 30 days of leaving office. During the 2022 election, constituents will elect someone to a four-year term.

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