The Florida Supreme Court ruled it is fair that convicted felons in Florida must pay off all fines and fees before having their right to vote restored, siding with Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Republican legislature.
There’s been an arrest in a four-year-old unsolved rape thanks to forensic genealogy — the first arrest of its kind in New Mexico. Investigators used new techniques to trace DNA to a genealogy website used by the defendant's distant family members.
Pennsylvania requires anyone working with children — from swim club volunteers to youth soccer coaches to Boy Scout leaders — to undergo background checks. But there's little enforcement and few ways to know who isn't complying with the law.
Minnesota’s new presidential primary system, run and paid for by the state, is expected to be logistically smoother. But for many voters, there’s a big trade-off. The new system also records voters’ party preference and provides that data to the chairs of each major political party.
Colorado lawmakers have introduced a bill to protect people from discrimination based on hair traits historically associated with race. It would apply to public education, employment, housing, public accommodations and advertising. The bill is similar to those passed in other states preventing discrimination against natural hair.
The Washington State Supreme Court has invalidated key portions of a rule imposed by the administration of Gov. Jay Inslee, a Democrat, that caps greenhouse-gas emissions by fuel distributors, natural-gas companies and other industries. The court ruled that the state’s efforts to enforce the state Clean Air Act went beyond what had been authorized by the law.
The West Virginia House approved a bill that would penalize physicians who don’t provide medical care to a baby born after an abortion attempt. Lawmakers passed the bill 93-5 despite questions about what use it would serve, since existing laws protect newborns and the state bans abortions after 20 weeks.
Republican Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said he plans to introduce legislation that would eliminate state income taxes on retirees who make less than $50,000 a year, as well as a reduction of 50% to 100% for retirees who make less than $100,000 a year.
The Wisconsin Assembly has approved a series of bills seeking to move up the timeline for adoptions in the state. Backers of the bills said they would make Wisconsin "an adoption friendly state," while critics say the bills focus too much on ways to terminate parental rights, which would disproportionately affect communities of color and low-income individuals.
New York has become the 10th state to allow adopted adults unrestricted access to their original birth certificates. Previously, adoptees had to get a court order to access their birth records, a rule designed to protect the privacy of parents who relinquished their children.
New Jersey did not benefit as much as it could have when awarding millions of dollars in tax breaks and tended to favor the interests of the companies applying for reductions on their tax bills instead of taxpayers, according to a task force hired by Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy to investigate the state's two expired corporate tax incentive programs.
Republican lawmakers once again are pushing to make Missouri’s Medicaid recipients find jobs if they want to keep their health coverage. But it’s not clear how this latest effort would be squared with a proposal to extend benefits to additional low-income people.