PORTLAND, Ore. (KGW) — For the first time in decades, Oregonians can legally pump their own gas. Gov. Tina Kotek’s office confirmed late Friday morning that she had signed a bill into law that gives gas stations throughout the state the ability to offer self-service as an option. The bill includes an emergency clause, meaning it took effect immediately upon receiving Kotek’s signature.
Last week, Kotek signaled that she would let the bill go into effect, either by signing it or allowing it to become law without her signature by the Aug. 4 deadline. The governor’s office later confirmed to KGW that her signature would be coming on Friday, but the exact timing wasn’t specified.
The Oregon Legislature passed House Bill 2426 earlier this year, which legalizes self-service gas statewide. The bill’s language gives gas station owners the choice to offer self-service. Gas stations need to have an equal amount of self-service pumps and full-service pumps, so drivers who don’t want to pump their own gas will still have the option to have an attendant help them.
In urban counties, gas stations can’t leave the pumps on overnight without having an attendant present.
Gas stations in rural counties have more flexibility. They don’t need to have an even ratio of self-service to full-service pumps, and also don’t need someone on staff during overnight hours. A 2015 law made overnight self-service legal in rural counties, and that expanded to a 24/7 option in 2017.
Pumping your own gas was banned in Oregon since 1951. Oregon was one of only two states in the U.S. where people can’t pump their own gas. Now that Kotek has signed the bill, New Jersey will become the only state in the country that doesn’t allow drivers to pump their own gas.
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