Chris M Lehman

News Reporter

Chris Lehman has been reporting on Oregon issues since 2006. He joined the KLCC news department in December, 2018. Chris was born and raised in Pennsylvania, and graduated from Temple University with a degree in journalism. His public broadcasting career includes stops in Louisiana and Illinois. Chris has filed for national programs including “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered.”

Chris has been to all 50 states and every Canadian province. He’s also traveled abroad extensively. He lives in Keizer with his wife, three children, and a handful of backyard chickens. 

Ways to Connect

The federal COVID-19 stimulus payments arriving later this month will not affect eligibility for social safety net programs like Medicaid or food stamps.

Chris Lehman / KLCC

Busses will start rolling again in Salem Tuesday, one week after the city’s public transit agency suspended operations due to the Coronavirus.

Cherriots says it will operate a limited schedule with only 25 percent of the normal service. Nine routes won’t operate at all.

The agency says some seats will be blocked off to help enforce social distancing, and that riders should be taking essential trips only. Bus service was suspended in Salem on March 31 after seven Cherriots employees tested positive for COVID-19.

Oregon State University

Many Oregon State University undergraduate students who return to campus next fall will not face an increase in tuition.

Oregon State University

The Oregon State University Board of Trustees voted Friday to create a campus police force.

Oregon State University

A hospital in Covallis got some help from an unusual source in its fight against COVID-19: The veterinary lab at Oregon State University.

Alachua County (public domain) /

Several law enforcement agencies in Oregon are now delivering prescriptions to people at risk of getting COVID-19. 

Rachael McDonald / KLCC

Passenger traffic is down sharply at the Eugene Airport as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

Chris Lehman / KLCC

The transit system serving Oregon’s capital city has suspended all scheduled services as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

Chris Lehman / KLCC

All U.S. Forest Service developed recreation sites in Oregon and Washington are now closed to the public in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Alachua County (public domain) /

Coronavirus-related complaints are pouring in to the Oregon agency that regulates workplace safety.

Chris Lehman / KLCC

The Oregon Liquor Control Commission says it will continue to allow retailers to refuse empty cans and bottles until at least the end of April.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Many businesses have closed their doors or scaled back their operations due to the coronavirus. But that doesn’t mean insurance policies will cover their losses.

Sen. Ron Wyden press office

Both of Oregon’s US Senators voted in favor of the $2 trillion coronavirus relief package that passed the Senate late Wednesday night.

University of Oregon

Oregon’s seven public universities say they will no longer require potential students to submit standardized test scores with their applications.

As part of Governor Kate Brown’s “Stay Home, Save Lives” executive order, the Oregon DMV is closing most of its field offices.

City of Corvallis

With toilet paper a scarce commodity on store shelves these days, some people are turning to so-called “flushable wipes” instead. But that’s leading to another potential problem.

Tiffany Eckert / KLCC

The numbers for unemployment claims in Oregon are still being tallied, but the initial figures are grim.

Chris Lehman / KLCC

All seven of Oregon’s public universities say they won’t use face-to-face classroom instruction at all during the spring semester due to the ongoing COVID-19 virus outbreak.

Chris Lehman / KLCC

Movie theaters are among the many businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. For one Oregon theater owner, it meant closing the doors for the first time since the theater opened in 1982.

Oregon Department of Justice

Oregon’s Attorney General is asking businesses to relax their usual cancellation policies for events disrupted due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 continue to rise in Oregon, more local cities and counties are declaring states of emergency.

Image by Nenad Maric from Pixabay

State economists say it’s too soon to know how the spread of the COVID-19 virus will impact Oregon’s economy.

Chris Lehman / KLCC

A proposal to dramatically expand an earthquake early warning system in Oregon has been stymied by the turmoil over an unrelated bill at the state capitol. For our latest story in our series on Oregon’s Natural Resources and Resilience funded by the University of Oregon Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics, we took at look at how the political stalemate in Salem will delay the rollout of the ShakeAlert system.

Hal Hermanson / KLCC

Oregon State University is holding a series of public listening sessions to get input on the future of public safety services on its Corvallis campus.

Oregon State University

The ongoing walkout by most Republicans in the Oregon legislature over climate change legislation is putting the fate of many other bills in doubt, including a measure that would fund construction and renovation projects at public universities.


The share of young Oregonians going into traditional blue collar jobs is on the rise. That’s according to a new analysis by a state economist.

Tom Banse / Northwest News Network

The Oregon House voted Friday to advance a measure that would establish building standards for critical infrastructure in tsunami zones.

Oregon DEQ

The City of Salem says its drinking water continues to be safe after a truck crash on Sunday resulted in fuel spilling into the North Santiam River.

Oregon State University

Oregon could soon have a commission that would promote industrial hemp and fund research into the crop.

Tom Banse / Northwest News Network

An Oregon House panel advanced a measure Thursday that would establish building standards for critical infrastructure in tsunami zones.