Stateline

What We're Reading: Top State Stories 10/23

What We're Reading: Top State Stories 10/23

PA: Lavish dinners, sports tickets, and nearly $3.5M other expenses by Pennsylvania lawmakers

spotlightpa.org

A yearlong investigation by the Caucus and Spotlight PA found lawmakers across Pennsylvania are shielding sometimes lavish campaign spending by not reporting the details to the public, making it extremely difficult for voters and donors to assess how the money was spent and if that spending was appropriate.

CA: California governor demands power company give more warnings on blackouts

sacbee.com

A day after Pacific Gas and Electric Co. announced it could cut power to more than 200,000 homes and businesses, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, is demanding the utility limit its shut-offs and give residents more warning ahead of planned blackouts.

WI: Wisconsin Republicans will end legislative session on guns as soon as it begins

jsonline.com

Wisconsin Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said he would likely gavel out of the session called by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers within moments of convening it.

TN: Tennessee has $730M in unused block grant funds for poor working families

tennessean.com

Tennessee receives $190.9 million each year through the federal government’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program. Last year, the conservative Beacon Center of Tennessee found the state spent just $71.1 million of that money, or 37% of the annual block grant amount.

TX: Embattled Texas House speaker won't run for re-election

dallasnews.com

Caught on tape belittling city and county governments, embattled Texas House Speaker Dennis Bonnen announced he would not seek re-election to the Texas House. Bonnen resisted calls from fellow Republicans to resign immediately.

RI: Rhode Island governor files suit to block lawmakers from ruling on marijuana regulations

providencejournal.com

Democratic Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo is asking a Superior Court judge to declare General Assembly control of medical marijuana and hemp regulations unconstitutional. At issue is a provision in this year’s state budget that requires legislative approval of all new cannabis-related regulations written by the Department of Health and the Department of Business Regulation.

IL: Still no end in sight for Chicago teachers strike

chicagotribune.com

The Chicago, Illinois, teachers strike will continue into a fifth school day with little indication of progress. The strike has sent about 25,000 teachers and 7,000 support staff to picket lines and kept about 300,000 students out of class and extracurricular activities. Among the demands from teachers are better salary, affordable housing assistance and smaller class sizes.

AL, LA, MS: Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi HBCUs among worst targets of discriminatory lending

jacksonfreepress.com

Historically black colleges and universities in Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana pay three times more in underwriting fees than do their non-HBCU counterparts, a new study found. HBCUs are among the worst targets of discriminatory lending practices, paying 14% more than non-HBCUs.

SC: South Carolina Republicans remove exceptions for rape, incest from abortion bill

thestate.com

A proposal to outlaw abortions in South Carolina after about six weeks of pregnancy got a first round of approval in the state Senate after Republicans removed protections in the bill for women who become pregnant from rape or incest.

NJ: 1 in 3 New Jersey lawmakers get double paychecks from taxpayers

northjersey.com

Nearly a third of New Jersey state lawmakers also work in other government jobs with payments that not only increase their pensions but also raise ethical questions about whom they serve when they cast votes in the legislature, an investigation found.

NY: New law requires pharmacies to notify patients of drug recalls

timesunion.com

New York pharmacies will now be required to inform patients whenever a Class 1 recall — the recall of a drug that has a high probability of exposing patients to serious health consequences or death — has been issued for a prescription drug they’re taking. The notification must come within three days of the recall and may be delivered by phone or mail.

ME: $100 checks headed for more than 300K Maine households

bangordailynews.com

More than 300,000 Maine homeowners can expect a $100 check early next year under a new state law. The households that can expect the payment qualified for the homestead exemption in 2019. 

AZ: Arizona quietly suspends Medicaid work requirement

apnews.com

Arizona quietly suspended plans to require about 120,000 people to work, volunteer or go to school to receive Medicaid benefits, as courts have taken a dim view of similar mandates in other states.

Farmworkers and E-Verify Opioid Settlements
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