Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown ordered a 25 percent mandatory cut in water use in response to California’s devastating drought. The order comes almost four decades after he faced a similar water crisis during his first stint as governor.
The state’s deficit has increased to nearly $173 million for the current fiscal year. Projected deficits for the next two years are even higher at $1.3 billion per year.
Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson has asked legislators to amend the Religious Freedom Restoration Act approved earlier this week so that it more closely resembles the federal version of the law. Hutchinson didn’t rule out using an executive order "to make it clear that Arkansas wants to be a place of tolerance,” but said he prefers a legislative fix.
House and Senate budget negotiators reached agreement to avoid multimillion-dollar cuts to the University of Kansas and Kansas State University, and to freeze tuition at all six state regents universities for the next two years.
A bill that aims to make sure Idaho students know who the vice president is before graduating from high school is headed to Republican Gov. Butch Otter’s desk. The bill, which would take effect in the 2016-17 school year, would require students to have the same knowledge as new U.S. citizens.
The Senate opened debate over hiking Nebraska’s fuel taxes by 6 cents a gallon, with conservative senators clearly split on doing, for them, the unthinkable: raising taxes.
The bill, being introduced by a bipartisan group of Delaware women legislators, would require universities in the state to report incidents of sexual assaults to law enforcement agencies outside of the college.
A House bill would repeal New Hampshire’s controversial abortion clinic buffer zone law adopted a year ago, just before the U.S. Supreme Court ruled a similar Massachusetts law unconstitutional.
For Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo, passing the state budget on time is a serious point of pride, a symbol that he has restored order in the capital. This year, he sacrificed many of his top proposals to clear the way for an almost punctual approval of a $142 billion budget.
Republican Gov. Larry Hogan rejected a request by a Democratic lawmaker to ban state-funded travel to Indiana until that state repeals its newly enacted Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
Democrats complained that the budget would leave unspent more than $19 billion in expected state revenues and rainy-day money. But leading Republicans, who have a large majority, said it’s wise to be cautious about a state economy taking some hits from falling oil prices.
Minnesota’s sex offender program is designed to civilly commit the worst offenders to state security hospitals, where they are to receive treatment for their illnesses. Critics have long complained that the program is unconstitutional.
Terminally ill patients in Nevada would be allowed to try drugs not fully approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration under a bill going to the Assembly floor for debate.