Stateline

What We're Reading: Top State Stories 11/22

What We're Reading: Top State Stories 11/22

PA: In historic move, Pennsylvania legislature passes clergy abuse reforms

inquirer.com

The Pennsylvania legislature gave final approval to legislation that would eliminate the statute of limitations as it relates to crimes of child sexual abuse and give victims more time to sue their abusers.

OK: Oklahoma to appeal judge's final order in opioid case

oklahoman.com

Attorney General Mike Hunter announced that Oklahoma plans to appeal a judge's order directing Johnson & Johnson to pay $465 million to fix the state's deadly opioid crisis. Hunter, a Republican, contends that is not enough money to fully abate the problem.

CA: Trump may withhold tax returns and appear on ballot, California Supreme Court rules

latimes.com

The California Supreme Court ruled that a new law requiring presidential candidates to disclose five years of tax returns to appear on the state’s primary ballot violates the state Constitution, which makes the primary ballot accessible to all “recognized” presidential candidates.

WI: Wisconsin expands program that aims to hire more minority teachers

jsonline.com

Minority Wisconsin teachers will be eligible to receive state-funded loans or have a portion of their college loan debt forgiven under a new law signed by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers, a former state schools superintendent.

TX: Texas governor orders state agencies to reduce licensing regulations, cut fees

texastribune.org

Republican Gov. Greg Abbott has set a Dec. 1 deadline for Texas state agencies to tell his office how they plan to limit regulations, reduce fees and, "where appropriate," remove licensing barriers for people with criminal records.

AZ: Using and selling vaping products could be banned at Arizona public universities

azcentral.com

The Arizona Board of Regents is considering a ban on vaping and the sale of vaping devices on public university campuses and other university-owned properties across the state. Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University and the University of Arizona have adopted separate policies banning e-cigarettes.

NH: Voter residency law opponents seek to block enforcement

apnews.com

Opponents of New Hampshire’s new law requiring voters to be full-fledged residents are in court describing the confusion it has caused. But the state says any confusion is “self-created and sustained.”

CT: Connecticut may need a new agency to handle detention of minors

courant.com

With a federal civil-rights probe beginning in December at a juvenile corrections center in Connecticut, a national consultant recommended the responsibility of detaining minors be transferred from the state Department of Correction and the Judicial Branch to a newly created, free-standing youth authority.

MD: Maryland education panel endorses $4B public school plan

baltimoresun.com

A Maryland commission studying how to improve the state’s education system endorsed a plan that would require $4 billion more to be spent each year on public schools. The increase would expand prekindergarten, improve career and technology training, raise teacher salaries and direct more resources to high-poverty schools.

MO: Missouri, voting rights groups settle address-change lawsuit

apnews.com

Missouri residents could soon find it easier to update their addresses for voter registration under a settlement that voter advocates reached. The state’s Revenue Department pledged to update its website within 60 days to automatically redirect users who change their address to the Secretary of State’s site to do the same for voter registration. 

OH: Ohio regulators reject attempt to charge customers for massive solar projects

cleveland.com

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio rejected a utility’s request to charge customers to pay for two solar-energy projects in Southwest Ohio, one of which would be the largest renewable-energy facility in the state.

NJ: New Jersey launches clearinghouse for school lead tests

northjersey.com

New Jersey launched a centralized database of lead test results for schools. While school districts had been required to post the results online and notify parents of high lead levels, many of the reports were buried on district websites or could not be found at all.

CO: Colorado regulators OK new rules requiring mapping of underground oil, gas lines

denverpost.com

The first major set of tougher regulations for Colorado's oil and gas rules won approval with adoption of changes intended to better map thousands of miles of underground oil and gas lines. There are an estimated 17,300 miles of flow lines in Colorado.

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