Stateline

What We're Reading: Top State Stories 2/10

What We're Reading: Top State Stories 2/10

NY: New York to restrict, disclose toxic chemicals in kids’ products

apnews.com

New York will require manufacturers to disclose the use of potentially dangerous chemicals in children’s products under a new law that goes into effect March 1. The law also creates a children’s product safety council that will advise state environmental regulators about which chemicals to restrict and how.

LA: Louisiana one of last states to use aging voting machines

theadvocate.com

When voters in Louisiana go to the polls during the 2020 presidential election, they will cast their ballots on aging electronic voting machines that the nation has largely abandoned over concerns that they have no paper record that could serve as a fail-safe if something goes wrong.

NM: New Mexico set to join red-flag law states

abqjournal.com

New Mexico appears on track to become the nation's 18th state with a red-flag gun law, after a divided Senate approved a bill that would allow firearms to be temporarily seized from those deemed dangerous to themselves or others. The bill moves to the House.

VA: Virginia lawmakers pass bill for better oversight of student loan servicers

richmond.com

Virginia legislators hope a proposal backed by both chambers of the General Assembly will protect borrowers from their student loan servicers. The “Borrower’s Bill of Rights,” would require companies that service student loans to be licensed by the State Corporation Commission.

PA: Agency that exposes Pennsylvania's puppy mills set to run out of money

spotlightpa.org

The Pennsylvania bureau tasked with discovering puppy mills and handling dangerous dogs expects to run out of money by this summer, in part because license fees for the state's canines are stuck at pre-2000 levels.

MS: After welfare officials exposed for fraud, Mississippi lawmakers take aim at recipients

mississippitoday.org

Less than 24 hours after officials revealed a state agency leader allegedly allowed subcontractors to steal millions intended for poor Mississippians, lawmakers advanced legislation to heighten scrutiny of public assistance applicants.

MD: Maryland hits pause on voter information network

marylandmatters.org

Maryland elections officials announced they will not require the state’s six largest jurisdictions to use a wireless network to transmit voter information to the state during this year’s elections. The software appeared to malfunction during last week’s special congressional primaries.

TX: Texas prosecutes Pennsylvania chemical company for assault

inquirer.com

In a case that has shocked the U.S. chemical industry, a Pennsylvania chemical company, its CEO and two managers are scheduled for trial on state criminal charges in Texas. The focus is on their alleged roles in the explosions and fires that consumed 175 tons of volatile chemicals at its Crosby, Texas, plant in 2017.

WI: Marsy's Law to remain on April ballot in Wisconsin

jsonline.com

Voters will have their say on whether the Wisconsin Constitution should be amended to provide crime victims more rights, a Dane County judge ruled. He said he would leave in place the question on the April 7 ballot known as Marsy’s Law.

CA: California governor ends long-distance commuting for state officials

sacbee.com

California government stopped paying for officials to commute across the state after The Sacramento Bee reported on a department director’s regular travel between Sacramento and San Diego, Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office said.

AL: Alabama bill would fine smokers in cars carrying children

apnews.com

A proposal before Alabama lawmakers would fine people who smoke in a vehicle when a child is present. The bill would make it illegal to smoke tobacco in a car when a child aged 14 or younger is present. Violators would be fined $100.

ID: Idaho lawmakers seek new approach to ban child marriage

idahostatesman.com

Lawmakers have proposed a bill that sets the minimum age to marry in Idaho at 16 and restricts the age difference if one party is under age 18 to no more than three years. Idaho has the highest rate of child marriage in the U.S.

AZ: Arizona lawmaker proposes bill to fine street racers

azcentral.com

An Arizona Senate bill would impose a $1,000 fine on people convicted of street racing. The money would be deposited into a "drag racing prevention enforcement fund" managed by the Arizona Governor's Office of Highway Safety.

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