What We're Reading: Top State Stories 2/1

OH: Ohio governor proposes that some Medicaid recipients pay monthly fee

Republican Gov. John Kasich is proposing that childless, non-pregnant adults with incomes above the poverty line in Ohio pay approximately $20 a month for their Medicaid insurance coverage. The change, estimated to save the state $100 million a year, requires federal approval.

TX: Texas governor imposes hiring freeze, declares 4 issues ‘emergencies’

In his State of the State speech, Republican Gov. Greg Abbott asked Texas lawmakers to fix the state’s troubled Child Protective Services agency, punish cities that provide sanctuary to undocumented immigrants, reform ethics laws, and support changing the U.S. Constitution to rein in federal power.

AR: Arkansas House OKs bid to revive state’s voter ID law

The Arkansas House approved a plan to reinstate a voter ID law that was struck down more than two years ago, with Republicans counting on a new state Supreme Court makeup to uphold the measure this time.

ME: Maine regulators seek middle ground in residential solar incentives

Maine homeowners who have solar-electric panels will be compensated for the power they produce at a full retail rate for 15 years, but those who wait until 2018 to go solar will see the credit gradually reduced over time.

ND: In reversal, North Dakota House votes to repeal blue law for Sunday opening

Just a day after it rejected a repeal of North Dakota’s Sunday closing law, the House reversed itself, voting to allow businesses to open to the public before noon Sunday.

IN: Indiana House OKs bill to expand needle exchange

A bill that would give counties the ability to create needle exchange programs without the permission of the state passed the Indiana House. Supporters say the change would allow for quicker responses to the spread of HIV and other health concerns.

GA: Georgia House panel backs bill to let hygienists give dental care to poor, elderly

A key Georgia House committee passed legislation that would allow dental hygienists to provide basic treatment in underserved areas, including nursing homes, without a dentist being present.

KS: Bill to keep concealed weapons off Kansas college campuses fails

A bill that would let Kansas colleges, universities and local governments continue to ban concealed weapons in their buildings failed to advance out of a Senate committee. Under current law, concealed weapons will be allowed on campuses starting in July.

CT: Connecticut governor pitches plan to give municipalities relief

Democratic Gov. Dannel Malloy called for relief for Connecticut’s cities and towns from state requirements, including ending the spending cap for many communities and increasing the threshold to pay “prevailing wage” on local construction projects.

WV: West Virginia scales back help filing tax returns

West Virginia State Tax Department employees will no longer prepare state tax returns for walk-in customers because of budgetary and staffing constraints. The agency said free tax preparation is available through nonprofits.

PA: Pennsylvania governor calls for $10 million to equip police with Naloxone

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf will include $10 million in his proposed budget to equip first responders and police officers in Pennsylvania with Naloxone, an emergency treatment for opioid overdoses.

NY: New York pumps up gambling treatment as it expands gambling

Thousands of new slot machines and table games debuting this month as part of New York state’s casino growth spurt are bringing not only more chances to gamble, but also millions of dollars more to help problem gamblers.

MO: Missouri senators reject raises for themselves, statewide officials

The Missouri Senate blocked raises for legislators and statewide elected officials, but not before quashing a coordinated revolt in the ranks.

Drug Coverage Housing for Artists