Mississippi is opening up vaccine appointments to everyone, Republican Gov. Tate Reeves tweeted. Mississippi is the second state in the U.S. to open up eligibility to all residents, after Alaska.
Data from Oklahoma State University’s Center for Rural Health shows rural Oklahomans have been dying of COVID-19 at disproportionate rates compared with their urban counterparts, reflecting long-standing health disparities between rural and urban areas.
For the second time in two weeks, transgender youth and their parents flooded committee meetings in the Missouri state legislature hoping to block bills that would ban youth from getting gender reassignment treatments or playing sports on teams that match their gender.
The latest data show that Black residents make up 6% of Minnesota’s population but 3.5% of its vaccine recipients. The recent vaccine expansion to 1.8 million Minnesotans offers a chance to even that out, health officials say.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, a Democrat, opted for a shot manufactured by Johnson & Johnson. The COVID-19 vaccine, which consists of just one dose, has faced some reluctance from the public due to perceptions of less efficacy. Virginia officials, however, welcomed the Johnson & Johnson vaccine as a way to reach herd immunity more quickly.
Under a Colorado bill, students in grades three, five and seven would be tested in literacy, but not in math; and students in grades four, six and eight would be tested in mathematics, but not in literacy. Assessment in science and social studies would be canceled for all grades. The test results wouldn’t be used to evaluate teacher performance.
Thirty percent of the Massachusetts State Police, totaling nearly 850 members in all, have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 at department-run clinics, reflecting a hesitancy that has lingered even among frontline law enforcement.
Calling its lawsuit challenging 2020 election procedures "groundless" and "disingenuous," Maricopa County Superior Court Judge John Hannah has ordered the Arizona Republican Party—and its lawyers—to pay the state thousands of dollars in legal fees.
Under pressure to improve striking disparities in Maryland’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution, Republican Gov. Larry Hogan announced that the state-run mass vaccination sites will set aside thousands of appointments per week for residents of Baltimore, Prince George’s County and other jurisdictions where the clinics are located.
Legislation that would make it illegal to remove or relocate Confederate memorials or monuments from the West Virginia Capitol and other public locations around the state is headed to the floor of the House of Delegates. The House Government Organization Committee approved the bill 19-6, with all Republican members voting in favor and all Democrats opposed.
Under Wisconsin Republican state Sen. Julian Bradley and Rep. Joe Sanfelippo’s bill, any federal COVID-19 recovery money sent to someone incarcerated in the state would have to go toward any restitution the prisoner owes. Bradley called the bill “a common sense proposal.”
In an effort to lower the state’s persistently high suicide rate, Utah lawmakers passed a slate of bills that increase access to mental health services, limit firearm access for people in crisis and boost prevention programs. The legislation comes at a time when many mental health advocates say the pandemic has laid bare the vast amount of need.
A broad legislative proposal that would address child care shortages and prices across Washington state passed its first major hurdle last week. The bill would expand child care access for families and improve support and subsidy rates for providers through a newly created funding account.
Legislation to prohibit mask mandates by government entities in Idaho is headed to the state House. The House State Affairs Committee voted 10-2 along party lines, with both Democratic representatives opposed, to approve the measure that’s a reworked version of previous legislation that banned mask mandates at medical facilities.
A Spotlight PA analysis of legislative records found that Pennsylvania lawmakers requested and received $726,877 from the beginning of March—as the pandemic emerged—through the end of 2020 as reimbursement for lodging and meals while traveling to and from the Capitol or other meetings across the state.
In remarks an Alaska House Republican gave before removing his mask, he described legislative leaders’ enforcement of COVID-19 safety rules as a “thinly veiled power play.” He said that leaders have not always followed these rules and noted that the Senate allows members to stand and take off their masks when they’re speaking, in contradiction of the rules.
A toxic class of chemicals used in some firefighting foams made its way into drinking water in several places throughout Delaware. A Senate bill would require any facilities training with firefighting foam containing a class of toxic chemicals known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, to implement containment and disposal measures to prevent contamination.
A bill to allow health care workers, hospitals and insurance providers to decline to provide services that violate their conscience has passed in both chambers of the Arkansas legislature, though it needs one final Senate approval. The bill would allow providers to opt out of procedures they don't agree with based on their religious or moral beliefs.
The Kentucky Senate added new restrictions to an already controversial teacher pension bill that would reduce benefits for new hires.
Under a one-year deferral program, low-income Illinois residents who owe outstanding fines or fees in Chicago and many suburbs won’t have the money taken out of their state income tax returns this year, officials announced.
Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom lashed out at the effort by critics to remove him from office, calling it a “Republican recall” fueled by backers of former President Donald Trump and warning that it could stymie California’s efforts to respond to the pandemic.