Federal law allows a state to keep a family on welfare for up to five years. But Arizona started to whittle that down after the Great Recession sent state revenue plunging.
Louisiana's once-booming film industry — dubbed "Hollywood South" — was off by as much as 90 percent this past year, according to the Louisiana Film Entertainment Association. The drop is attributed to the state's decision to wind down its generous incentives last July, scaring off moviemakers.
Prisoner advocates and Texas corrections officials are locked in a years-long battle over whether super-heated conditions in Texas prisons — temperatures in some cells can climb above 100 degrees — constitute cruel and unusual punishment and jeopardize inmates' lives.
Utah health officials are grappling with a rising youth suicide rate that's nearly tripled since 2007 and is now the leading cause of death among 10- to 17-year-olds in Utah.
By November, businesses will have to describe their efforts to ensure women and minorities have equal access to jobs when they apply for California Competes tax credits.
The city of Orlando isn't handing over 911 calls made during the recent mass shooting there although 911 calls are public records under Florida law. Government agencies across the state are increasingly reluctant to turn over public documents.
Illinois' experiment with medical marijuana has earned a boost thanks to Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner's approval of legislation extending the state pilot program for 2 1/2 years and including two more medical conditions.
Republicans said the emergency measure was necessary to fix what they call "defects" in Montana law governing campaign contributions and close a "loophole" that allows for cash from political action committees to flow to candidates without limit.
Lobbying interests have spent nearly $800 million since 2002 trying to influence government officials. The amount spent per year has doubled, and the number of new lobbying clients seeking to be heard has tripled, according to a newspaper analysis of Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board data.
Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s strategy to rejuvenate upstate New York is to lure big companies from out of state, cut business taxes and pour billions in state subsidies into nanotechnology projects from Buffalo to Albany. But it has produced just 408 new jobs in the past two years, even as the state has spent tens of millions of dollars promoting it.
Seven western Washington counties that voted for President Obama, recreational pot and marriage equality grew 67 percent faster than the rest of Washington, and now account for 54 percent of the state’s population.
Children in Virginia will no longer be allowed to marry, even if they are pregnant or have parental consent. Lawmakers moved the state’s minimum marriage age from 13 to 18.
With a failed ballot measure that sought changes to the state’s decades-old corporate farming law in the rear-view mirror, a potentially lengthy federal court battle over its legality has arisen.