What We're Reading: Top State Stories 5/12

TX: Texas House moves to require new abortion reporting data

The Texas House passed a measure that would require health facilities that perform abortions to release highly detailed data on complications that arise during and after the procedure — another move by GOP lawmakers to crack down on abortions in Texas.  

AL: Alabama Senate approves bill to “ban the box” on job applications

The Alabama Senate passed a bill that would prohibit state agencies from asking job applicants about their criminal histories until the agency make a conditional job offer.

WI: Wisconsin Assembly approves work requirements for some housing voucher recipients

The Wisconsin Assembly approved a bill that would require some able-bodied adults to work in order to receive housing vouchers, though the measure doesn’t specify what the employment, training, and/or other "self-sufficiency requirements" would be.

NJ: New Jersey governor vetoes proposed ban on child marriage

New Jersey Republican Gov. Chris Christie called the proposal, which would have prohibited children under 18 from marrying in New Jersey, a “severe bar” that would interfere with religious customs. Currently, a judge has to approve marriages of children 15 and younger, while 16- and 17-year-olds can marry with parental approval. 

PA: Pennsylvania lawmakers push for measure banning “lunch shaming” in schools

Lawmakers from Pennsylvania are introducing bills at the state and federal level to ban the practice known as “lunch shaming” — taking away school meals or using other means to single out children with unpaid lunch bills.

CA: California governor unveils budget proposal with rosier outlook

California Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown has unveiled a new $124 billion budget plan that would spend more money than he proposed in January. Higher-than-expected capital gains revenue has shrunk the deficit that was projected then. 

FL: Florida budget includes $650,000 to protect Jewish schools

Following a wave of bomb threats against Jewish institutions across the country, Florida lawmakers have created a line item in the budget to bolster security at Jewish schools. 

KY: Kentucky State Police change requirements to get more applicants

Seeking to broaden its pool of applicants, the Kentucky State Police said people with a high school diploma or GED and three years of work experience can qualify to become a state trooper, and would earn an associate degree in criminal justice while in the academy. Until now, applicants needed 60 hours of college credit or two years of military or law enforcement experience.

LA: Louisiana House votes to raise money for parole officers by charging offenders more

The measure passed by the Louisiana House increases, from $63 to $100, the maximum parole supervision fee that people have to pay monthly after they are released from prison. The extra $37 would be dedicated to "the recruiting and retention of adult probation and parole officers." 

AZ: Arizona Legislature ends session with tax, welfare bills

Arizona lawmakers ended their 2017 session with a tax-break flourish, approving two tax-credit bills worth millions of dollars aimed at spurring business development, and a revision of a controversial cash-aid program for poor families.

KS: Kansas may delay amusement park law passed after fatal ride

Less than three weeks after Republican Gov. Sam Brownback signed tightened rules for Kansas amusement parks, lawmakers who were spurred by the death of a colleague's son are proposing to delay the law's implementation.

Legal Judgments Can Add to Local Government Distress Child Marriage