What We're Reading: Top State Stories 6/6
CA: California has too much solar power. That might be good for ratepayers.
California set two renewable energy records last week: the most solar power ever flowing on the state’s main electric grid, and the most solar power ever taken offline because it wasn’t needed.
NC: North Carolina lawmakers uphold veto of ‘born alive’ abortion bill
The North Carolina House failed to block Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of Senate Bill 359, which would have brought new penalties for medical professionals who allow abortion survivors to die. It was the first time the Republican-majority legislature upheld a veto by Cooper.
AL: Alabama governor reviewing ‘chemical castration’ bill
Republican Gov. Kay Ivey is still reviewing a bill the Alabama legislature passed that would require sex offenders whose victims are children to undergo a “chemical castration treatment” as a condition of parole.
SC: Feds plan to move South Carolina nuclear waste
The U.S. Department of Energy is proposing to ship what has long been considered some of the world’s most deadly nuclear waste from South Carolina to burial grounds in the western United States. Cold War weapons production sites in Washington and Idaho could also benefit from the plan.
FL: Could an armed teacher be arrested like the police officer in Parkland, Florida?
The sponsor of this year’s bill which allowed classroom teachers in Florida to carry guns said it’s possible armed teachers could similarly be on the hook, legally, if they don’t do everything required of them to keep kids safe during a shooting.
NH: New Hampshire House passes increase in minimum wage
The New Hampshire House and Senate have now both passed bills raising the minimum wage, currently at the federal minimum of $7.25 an hour, to $10 in 2021 and $12 in 2022. Differences between the two bills will have to be resolved before a final version gets to Republican Gov. Chris Sununu, who has said he believes minimum wage policies are a federal and not a state issue.
KY: Kentucky education chief wants performance-based pay for teachers
In a forceful call for "structural change," Kentucky’s education commissioner said he wants lawmakers to clear the way for performance-based pay — a controversial education reform strategy that would reward effective teachers with more money.
LA: Louisiana voters to decide on abortion rights in state constitution
When Louisianans go to the polls in November 2020 to vote for president, they will also be faced with a ballot measure asking them to decide whether to enshrine anti-abortion language in the state constitution. The amendment would become relevant if the landmark U.S. Supreme Court abortion decision Roe v. Wade is overturned.
CT: Connecticut Senate approves $43 billion budget; governor expected to sign
The Connecticut Senate approved a two-year, $43 billion budget with Democrats hailing the plan as fiscally prudent and Republicans blasting the package as a bad deal with too many tax increases. Gov. Ned Lamont, a Democrat, is expected to approve it. The budget includes new taxes, a plastic bag ban and debt-free community college.
NJ: New Jersey governor calls for revamping tax credits for companies
Less than a month before New Jersey’s embattled corporate tax incentive program expires, Gov. Phil Murphy, a Democrat, pushed his plan for a complete revamp he said won’t just enrich large companies — as critics have charged — but boost startups and rebuild communities.
CO: Colorado to pursue mandatory electric-vehicle standard
State agencies are concentrating on developing a mandatory standard to boost the number of electric vehicles in Colorado after talks ended with auto manufacturers about a possible voluntary approach. Auto manufacturing trade groups proposed a voluntary approach as state agencies started taking steps to adopt a statewide mandate.
ME: Governor calls for Maine to borrow $239 million to fix roads, conserve land, build workforce
Gov. Janet Mills, a Democrat, rolled out a $239 million bond package that would, among other things, invest in broadband internet and renewable energy, replace aging roads and bridges and rebuild the Land for Maine’s Future program.
TX: Some Texas gun rights groups oppose a state-funded gun storage safety campaign, but not the NRA.
Some gun rights groups want Republican Gov. Greg Abbott to veto a line item in the Texas budget that puts $1 million toward a public safety campaign on gun storage. But one powerful bloc isn't actively opposing the measure: The National Rifle Association.