Michigan voters overwhelmingly rejected Proposal 1, the sales tax increase and road funding measure crafted by Republican Gov. Rick Snyder and legislative leaders. The ballot measure also would have raised more money for education, local governments and to restore a tax credit for the working poor.
The three Republican governors—Scott, Kansas’ Sam Brownback and Texas’ Greg Abbott—want an extension on federal funds that help hospitals that care for uninsured and Medicaid patients. But the federal government wants states to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, arguing it’s more efficient to give people money to help buy health insurance than to pay hospitals for caring for the uninsured retroactively.
The new law will ratchet down the length of time that a family can draw welfare benefits and up the requirements for low-income parents to get job training, do volunteer work or complete high school and vocational education.
In-state students at Arizona State University will pay a one-time $320 surcharge for the next year. Tuition is also going up for new undergraduates at the University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University, but not for current students in guaranteed-tuition plans.
Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock signed a bill that will increase speed limits from 75 mph to 80 mph on interstate highways in Montana, though drivers will face higher fines if caught speeding.
Health insurers would be prohibited from covering abortion in all cases except for medical emergencies in Texas. Ten states now prohibit all health plans from covering abortion, and 15 prohibit abortion coverage on federal marketplace plans.
New York will begin using a standard bar examination given in 15 other states next summer, making it the largest state so far to adopt what amounts to a national credential for lawyers, the state’s chief judge, Jonathan Lippman, announced.
In the clearest sign yet that the “Great California Recovery” is proceeding on pace, Democratic Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins announced that the state's revenue has climbed as much as $8 billion in the last four months.
The Republican Caucus in the Alabama House has proposed raising taxes on cigarettes, large businesses, car titles and car rentals as part of a plan to fix the state budget.
Koch Industries says it has become part of a bipartisan coalition to reform a system that puts too many non-violent people in prison, particularly youthful drug offenders, for too long. The system takes away individual freedom and costs society, says Koch, the Kansas industrial giant known for its conservative and libertarian approach to politics.
Wisconsin’s top railroad official is worried about the growing number of oil trains in the state, saying the situation is increasing safety risks for motorists and pedestrians.
Obesity could soon be defined as a chronic disease, and Nevada officials would be required to compile an annual report about what's being done to fight it in the state.