Erika Bolstad

Erika Bolstad

Erika Bolstad is a Stateline correspondent based in Portland, Oregon, and the author of Windfall, published by Sourcebooks in 2023. Previously, she wrote for E&E News, the McClatchy Washington Bureau and the Miami Herald.

Oil-Friendly States Fight Back Against Sustainable Investment Trend

By: - March 16, 2021

Climate and shareholder activists are leading a growing movement for investors to put their money only in companies with sustainable business practices, a standard that considers how a company is run, the working conditions in its supply chain and its effect on climate change. But lawmakers in some energy-producing states are not only pushing back—they’re […]

Prompted by Pandemic, Some States Buy Hotels for the Homeless

By: - December 4, 2020

PORTLAND, Ore. — It’s a bold goal in a place with a major housing crisis: Get as many as 2,000 unsheltered Oregonians into homes this winter by spending $65 million in state money to buy up to 20 underused hotels. Oregon’s Project Turnkey, modeled after a similar program in California, was born out of the […]

Emboldened Far-Right Groups Challenge Cities, States

By: - October 13, 2020

PORTLAND, Ore. — When wildfires threatened rural Oregon communities last month, another unwelcome phenomenon accompanied them: armed vigilantes blocking entry to outsiders, based on false rumors that protesters had not only started the fires, but also were there to loot the evacuated homes. Throughout the West and beyond, in a summer marked by protests seeking […]

In Slumping Energy States, Plugging Abandoned Wells Could Provide an Economic Boost

By: - September 23, 2020

Read Stateline coverage of the latest state action on coronavirus. WATFORD CITY, N.D. — It’s rare for Tom Brooks to say no to work. Which is why, in the middle of a pandemic and a worldwide slump in oil prices, Brooks mustered up a crew to plug a 42-year-old oil well for the state of […]

COVID-19 Is Crushing Newspapers, Worsening Hunger for Accurate Information

By: - September 8, 2020

Read Stateline coverage of the latest state action on coronavirus. David Erickson got the call directly from the publisher of the Missoulian, the Montana newspaper where he works as a reporter writing about business and housing. You might as well hear it first so you can break the news, the publisher told him earlier in […]

Summertime Visitors Swarm State Parks and Budgets

By: - September 2, 2020

Read Stateline coverage of the latest state action on coronavirus. CORBETT, Ore. — The sounds floating down the beach at Rooster Rock State Park were unmistakable, and after months of social distancing, felt almost illicit. The thump of music. The “woo-hoo!” of a crowd. Was that … a party? It was. Not just any party, […]

Jury Trials Begin Again, Carefully

By: - May 29, 2020

Read Stateline coverage of the latest state action on coronavirus. PORTLAND, Ore. — On a drizzly spring day in mid-May, potential grand jurors lined up 6 feet apart outside the Multnomah County Courthouse. Raincoats and umbrellas dripping, they filed one by one into the courthouse and through a metal detector, all the while maintaining appropriate […]

Mayors to Governors: Toughen Up!

By: - March 30, 2020

Read Stateline coverage of the latest state action on coronavirus. PORTLAND, Ore. — The optics were terrible, even if the weather was perfect. Absent a firm order from Gov. Kate Brown to stay at home, thousands of people with nothing else to do packed Oregon’s beaches, trails and state parks a couple of weekends ago. […]

This State Pays to Help Asylum-Seekers Avoid Deportation

By: - November 14, 2019

PORTLAND, Ore. — One day five years ago, Alexander decided he’d had enough. Fed up with the culture of extortion in his home country of Honduras, Alexander stopped bribing the gang members who accosted him on his way to pay workers at his father’s small ranch. The police told Alexander to change his phone number, […]

Affordable Housing Push Challenges Single-Family Zoning

By: - August 20, 2019

Read more Stateline coverage on affordable housing. BEND, Ore. — Phil Chang has a naturalist’s take on the 600-square-foot rental unit he built on top of his garage last year, after the city made it easier for people to add apartments to single-family homes.  Bend, a fast-growing city of nearly 100,000 in central Oregon, has plenty of […]