CHILD CARE OVERSIGHT: Half of the states earn a failing grade when it comes to child care center protections and oversight, says a new report from an advocacy group. No state earned an "A" from the National Association of Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies. Garnering the highest overall scores were Oklahoma , Washington, D.C. , Illinois , Massachusetts and Florida . Idaho had the lowest score, followed by Louisiana , California , Nebraska and Kansas . The group wants Congress to beef up the Child Care and Development Block Grant program by requiring background checks for all child care center employees and unannounced inspections.
HOUSING CUTS: Lost in the high-stakes battle over Governor Jerry Brown's proposal to eliminate the state's redevelopment agencies is the fate of affordable housing, reports the San Jose Mercury News . Hundreds of thousands of California 's low- and moderate-income residents have benefited from a program that forces redevelopment agencies to allocate 20 percent of their revenue to affordable housing. Brown's proposed budget doesn't include a plan to fund low-income housing. Meanwhile in Louisiana , Governor Bobby Jindal wants to consolidate several state programs into a single entity that would handle federal and state dollars for housing programs, The Advocate reports.
PROTECTIONS FOR DISABLED: Lawmakers in Albany expressed outrage over a New York Times investigation detailing cases of abuse at state-run group homes for the developmentally disabled, vowing to seek criminal prosecution of workers and to introduce legislation improving oversight. The Times reviewed hundreds of cases in which employees who sexually abused, beat or taunted residents usually did not lose their jobs, and in many cases were moved to other state-run group homes.