What We're Reading: Top State Stories 8/16

MD: Confederate monuments taken down in Baltimore overnight

Confederate statues in Baltimore were removed from their bases overnight, as crews using heavy machinery loaded them onto flat-bed trucks and hauled them away, an end to more than a year of indecision surrounding what to do with the memorials.

OR: Oregon governor expands abortion, reproductive coverage

Democratic Gov. Kate Brown signed into law a bill expanding coverage on abortions and other reproductive services to thousands of Oregonians, regardless of income, citizenship status or gender identity. Proponents called it America's most progressive reproductive health policy.

WY: Wyoming miners protest proposal to use federal funds to support Appalachian coal

Republican Gov. Jim Justice of West Virginia has proposed using around $4.5 billion in federal funds every year to pay Eastern power plants to burn coal from Appalachia. Wyoming’s top elected officials, including Republican Gov. Matt Mead and the state’s congressional delegation, argue the idea would use taxpayer money to advantage eastern coal over Western coal.

NY: 1 in 7 New York City elementary students will be homeless, report says

There were 100,000 homeless students in New York City public schools during the 2015-16 school year — a number equal to the population of Albany. If current trends continue, according to a new report, one in every seven New York City public school students will be homeless at some point during elementary school.

MI: Michigan Capitol going green with geothermal

The Michigan Capitol is going “green and clean” with a new geothermal heating and cooling system that officials say will be the largest of its kind at a state government building in the country.

CO: Colorado city says it won’t support white nationalist convention

The city of Colorado Springs won’t support a three-day convention at the Cheyenne Mountain Resort planned by the white nationalist group VDARE. Mayor John Suthers said the city can't limit free speech, nor can it tell private businesses with whom to schedule conferences. But he encouraged local businesses to be attentive to the types of events they accept and the groups that they invite.

ME: Maine governor seeks Trump’s help in effort to raise state’s voting age

Maine Gov. Paul LePage, a Republican, says he will seek flexibility from the Trump administration in an attempt to bring consistency to the age thresholds at which people can drink alcohol, buy tobacco products, vote and serve in the military.

MO: Missouri Board of Education approves plan to improve schools

Missouri will aim to have at least 82 percent of its public school students proficient in English and at least 74 percent of students proficient in math by 2026, as part of its federally mandated plan to improve the worst-performing public schools.

TX: Texas Legislature ends special session without passing property tax measure

The Texas Legislature closed out the special session amid a stalemate on property tax reform, leaving unfinished Republican Gov. Greg Abbott's top priority. Senate Republicans wanted automatic elections for increases of 4 percent or more. The House settled on a 6 percent trigger, and by adjourning early, House leaders told the Senate to take the 6 percent rate or leave it.

SC: State university says it adds $5.5 billion a year to South Carolina’s economy

The University of South Carolina system has a $5.5 billion-a-year impact on the South Carolina economy, supports one in 35 jobs statewide and produces nearly $220 million in taxes for state government, according to a new study.

NV: New insurer to offer health exchange plans in rural Nevada

Missouri-based Centene Corp. will offer a health plan on Nevada’s exchange in 14 rural counties that had lost their only carrier for the coming year. More than 8,000 people previously covered would not have had an option on Nevada’s exchange had Centene not stepped in.

‘Doula’ Programs Immigrant Labor