What We're Reading: Top State Stories 6/12
VA: Virginia primary voters signal impatience with establishment politicians
Virginia Democratic voters signaled impatience with establishment politicians in primary elections, sending home one high-profile state senator who had been embraced by top leaders and giving the scare of a lifetime to another.
MT: Montana legislature fails to override sports betting veto
The Montana legislature has failed to override Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock’s veto of a bill that would have allowed sports betting. The bill fell well short of the votes it needed from the House and the Senate.
OR: Oregon prepares for interstate pot commerce
With an eye to making Oregon as big in cannabis as it is in craft brews and pinot noir, the legislature passed a bill that empowers the governor to enter into agreements with other states for the interstate transfer of marijuana.
NY: Landmark deal reached for tenant protections in New York
Newly empowered Democratic leaders in Albany announced a landmark agreement to strengthen New York’s tenant protections. The changes would abolish rules that let building owners deregulate apartments and close a series of loopholes that permit them to raise rents.
AZ: Arizona is a hotbed for the cadaver industry
Approximately 4,000 people — about 7% of the Arizonans who die each year — are whole body donors, which is roughly five times the national average based on 39 reporting states, the Illinois-based Cremation Association of North America says.
OH: Ohio to request federal tornado aid
Ohio’s governor, Republican Mike DeWine, was expected to request aid for tornado victims. The governor said he would ask for help for 10 Ohio counties where Celina is located. DeWine said his administration will ask for direct assistance for individuals who are underinsured or uninsured.
ME: Maine moves toward allowing Canadian prescription drug imports
The Maine Senate unanimously advanced a package of bills aimed at reducing prescription drug prices, including Canadian drug imports, following a first-in-the-nation Vermont law that would need federal approval.
FL: Florida governor signs bill to pursue importing prescription meds
Citing the need to reduce rising health care costs, Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill that would allow Florida to pursue importing prescription drugs from abroad — though components of the bill will require federal approval to take effect.
VT: Vermont governor vetoes gun purchase waiting period bill
Republican Gov. Phil Scott has vetoed legislation that would have made Vermont the 10th state to institute a waiting period for gun sales.
MD: Fentanyl deaths decline in Maryland for first time in years
Fatal overdoses linked to the highly potent synthetic opioid fentanyl dipped in the first three months of 2019 in Maryland, leading to a decline in overall drug and alcohol deaths for the first time in years.
MS: Mississippi foster care children still abused, neglected, report says. Feds may take over.
The court monitor in the long running federal lawsuit against Mississippi over its foster care system released a report saying children in state custody are still abused and neglected. Mississippi's continued failure to meet court-ordered reforms puts the state at risk of a court-appointed receiver taking over the state's child welfare system.
TX: Texas governor signs public breastfeeding bill
Previous Texas law permitted women to breastfeed in public but did not expressly reference women who choose to use a breast pump. The bill signed by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott aims to prevent confusion for businesses and employers by making clear that the same rules apply to breast pumping.
LA: Louisiana governor signs bill to expand Uber, Lyft
New legislation sets up uniform rules to oversee Uber and Lyft in Louisiana. Backers say the oversight is needed to end the patchwork of local regulations in place now, which they say makes it difficult to use ride-hailing services across parish lines.