What We’re Reading: Top State Stories 6/14

OH: Ohio joins 37 states in adopting ‘911 Good Samaritan’ law in overdose cases

Republican Gov. John Kasich signed the so-called Good Samaritan law that grants immunity to 911 emergency callers in Ohio and to the person overdosing on heroin, opioids or other drugs from arrest, charges, prosecution, conviction and penalization for a minor drug possession offense.

FL: Want to buy an assault rifle in Florida? No problem

In Florida, buying an assault rifle is no problem as long as you’re 18 and a legal resident of the U.S., aren’t a felon or a domestic abuser, and have no documented mental health or substance abuse issues. There is no waiting period to buy a rifle. There is a three-day waiting period to buy a handgun, and handgun buyers must be 21 or older.

DE: Delaware rolls out health care initiative

With a $34 million federal grant and help from a public-private partnership, Delaware will seek to address a shortage of psychiatrists and dentists, and the high cost of providing health care, over five years.

MO: Missouri governor signs bill giving tuition breaks to military

Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon signed a bill that allows current members of the Missouri National Guard or military reserve members to be eligible for in-state tuition at state colleges and universities.

SC: South Carolina governor vetoes moped bill over helmets, safety vests

Republican Gov. Nikki Haley called the moped bill government overreach. It would require South Carolina drivers under 21 to wear helmets, and require all drivers and passengers to wear reflective vests at night.

NJ: Facing languishing transportation fund, New Jersey considers gas tax hike

With the state’s transportation trust fund expected to run out next month, New Jersey lawmakers are considering a 23-cent-a-gallon increase in the gasoline tax.

MS: Mississippi nixes student loan forgiveness for some students, grads

Some education, nursing and veterinary medicine students and graduates won’t be eligible for loan forgiveness after budget cuts that left the Mississippi Office of Student Financial Aid at the same funding level as last year but with far more applicants now.

MI: Federal government sues Michigan over staffing at women's prison

The U.S. Justice Department filed a gender discrimination lawsuit against the state over staffing issues at Michigan’s only women's prison, where female corrections officers have been subjected to mandatory overtime they say is excessive and harmful.

NY: New York poised to expand access to breast cancer screening

New York is poised to expand access to breast cancer screening by requiring hospitals to expand hours when mammograms are offered and requiring insurance companies to eliminate deductibles and copays for the screening and some other diagnostic tests.

TX: Eighty percent of Texas drivers would see car registration fees spike under DMV plan

The increase would help the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles cover a budget shortfall while boosting road funding. But county tax officials, who’ve long argued that they deserve more money for handling registrations, are fuming that the proposal would actually decrease their compensation.

OR: Oregon developers want to build $100 million homeless facility

A pair of developers hope to build support for a $100 million-plus homeless campus to serve as a "one-stop-shop" for 1,400 people in search of nightly shelter and on-site assistance in Portland. They are seeking $60 million from Oregon businesses and foundations, leaving government to pick up the rest.

WV: Fewer addictive drugs being dispensed in West Virginia

Despite an increase in prescriptions, the number of tightly controlled drugs being dispensed in West Virginia is on pace to drop to its lowest amount in five years. The drop comes after the federal government reclassified some highly addictive drugs, which put new restrictions on their use.

OK: For many Oklahomans, storm shelters are too costly or too far away

Lower costs and reasonable bank loan rates are allowing some Oklahomans to add storm shelters to new and existing homes. But the lack of community shelters in cities and the costs of a safe room at home leave lower-income people out of luck and vulnerable during dangerous storms.

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