Wildfires in Arizona, Nebraska and New Mexico have left at least one person dead and destroyed hundreds of structures. The fires are part of an early and active season across the country, as wildfires also have plagued California, Colorado and Texas.
A 2021 law was supposed to herald the end of the single-family zoning that many point to as a culprit of California’s housing crisis. But four months into the new era, little has changed, and the scant enforcement of the law has come about largely because of pro-housing activists.
Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed into law new guidelines involving race-based discussions in businesses and schools as part of his campaign against critical race theory, which he called “pernicious” ideology.
The Alaska legislature is considering a state takeover of a major federal environmental permitting process. The goal, administration officials have said, is to speed the construction of roads, bridges, mines and drilling projects.
Six years of demanding a repeal of the “tampon tax” in Texas haven’t worked. Activists appear poised to try a new tack—mounting a lawsuit to build pressure on lawmakers.
After drawn-out negotiations, the Tennessee Senate and House passed a state budget that will include $500 million in bonds for a new Nashville stadium for the NFL Titans.
Hundreds of Illinois school districts are awaiting their share of $87 million in funding mistakenly allocated to Chicago Public Schools, which has been asked to reimburse the state for the overpayment.
Arkansas Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson said he was considering calling a special session of the legislature later this year after finance officials said they expected the state’s surplus to hit $1 billion by the end of the year. Hutchinson said he was weighing proposals to use the surplus money to expand broadband access in the state, fund school buildings and cut taxes.
With tax revenues over projections and inflation squeezing spenders at the checkout line, Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, a Republican, worked to build support for a tax package that he said would give nearly $700 million back to taxpayers in the form of new tax breaks and other changes.
A huge influx of federal funding will be put to work on Central Oregon forests to lower the risk of catastrophic fire next door to growing cities. The U.S. Forest Service this month announced a $41.3 million investment in fire treatment on 50,000 acres of public lands in the region, most of it in the Deschutes National Forest.
Mississippi Republican Gov. Tate Reeves vetoed a bill intended to make it easier for some people who lost their voting rights as a result of a Jim Crow-era provision of the state’s 1890 Constitution to regain their right to vote.
Voting was halted briefly during the Michigan Republican endorsement convention, upsetting many members. Races and candidates on the ballot were displayed on large screens, but the order of the races on the screen didn’t match the order on the ballot, spurring confusion.
The U.S. government dropped its appeals of a Hawaii order requiring it to remove fuel from a massive military fuel storage facility that leaked petroleum into the Navy’s water system at Pearl Harbor last year.
The state auditor says Iowa’s Department of Natural Resources is violating laws intended to protect the state’s air and water. The auditor says the department has not cataloged county wetlands or worked to acquire wetlands through the closures of agriculture drainage wells. It also has not developed a compliance panel mandated by the federal Clean Air Act, the auditor says.
The first of three sweeping bills meant to improve services for children’s mental health in Connecticut cleared the Senate with overwhelming bipartisan support. It now heads to the House.
Community and technical colleges in Washington experienced a combined 24% enrollment drop between fall 2019 and fall 2021. Public four-year institutions saw a collective drop in undergraduates of nearly 7% during that time period. Education leaders are still untangling the reasons the pandemic kept students away.