What We're Reading: Top State Stories 1/27

  • January 27, 2017

WI: Cost of Wisconsin road projects is double estimates

jsonline.com

The cost of major road projects in Wisconsin doubled between the time they were planned and built, a sweeping audit of the state Department of Transportation has revealed.

ND: North Dakota governor signs off on delay for medical marijuana law

grandforksherald.com

Republican Gov. Doug Burgum has signed a bill that delays parts of North Dakota’s new medical marijuana law in order to give the state Health Department more time to craft rules for the drug.

PA: Potential closures, mergers considered for Pennsylvania state colleges

philly.com

With falling enrollment and stagnant funding, Pennsylvania's state university system is undergoing a strategic review that could result in the merger or closure of some of its 14 campuses.

VA: Bill proposes end to license ban for pot possession in Virginia

wtkr.com

Virginians convicted of marijuana possession would no longer automatically lose their driver’s license for six months under legislation moving through the General Assembly.

CA: California lawmakers want third-gender options on IDs

ap.org

A bill introduced in the state Senate would make California the first state to add a third gender option on state identifying documents like driver's licenses and birth certificates. 

AR: Arkansas bans common second-trimester abortion procedure

arkansasonline.com

Just hours after it was approved by the Arkansas Senate, Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed into law a ban on the procedure, known as dilation and evacuation, which abortion-rights supporters contend is the safest and most common procedure used in second-trimester abortions.

AZ: Minimum-wage hike brings big price tag for Arizona school districts

azcentral.com

Arizona school districts estimate the state's new minimum-wage hike will cost them a combined $11.5 million over the next six months, most of which will pay wages of employees outside the classroom.

ME: Maine governor won’t sign bill to delay retail pot sales, bar possession by minors

pressherald.com

With a new marijuana legalization law set to take effect Monday, House and Senate lawmakers approved a bill delaying retail sales and closing a potential loophole that could allow Mainers under age 21 to possess the drug. But Republican Gov. Paul LePage said they failed to provide money to begin rule-making or to address concerns about the best state agency to oversee marijuana licensing.

AK: Alaska suicide rate is highest in at least 20 years

juneauempire.com 

Alaska recorded 200 suicides in 2015, a rate of 27.1 per 100,000 residents, compared to a national rate of 13.3 per 100,000. The state has the second-highest suicide rate in the country, behind only Wyoming.

CT: Connecticut governor proposes steps to curb opioid problem

courant.com

Democratic Gov. Dannel Malloy's proposal would require opioid prescriptions in Connecticut to be handled electronically, instead of on paper, and allow someone other than the patient to destroy unused medication. People could include a statement in their medical files that they do not want to receive the drugs, and information about the risk of addiction would be required for those who are prescribed opioids.

SC: Proposal to tighten moped laws passes South Carolina Senate

thestate.com

A proposal on the way to the South Carolina House paves the way for police to charge drunken moped drivers with driving under the influence. The bill also would require moped drivers to register with the DMV, follow the same traffic rules as other vehicles, and wear a helmet if they are younger than 21.

GA: Bill would regulate sale of cats, dogs in Georgia

myajc.com

A bill introduced in the Georgia House would require commercial retail stores to vaccinate cats and dogs against diseases and parasites under the supervision of certified veterinarians and standardize return policies for owners.

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