What We're Reading: Top State Stories 6/29

Top State Stories 6/29

OH: Ohio can use three-drug combination to resume executions, appeals court says

The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said it would allow the state of Ohio to use a certain three-drug mixture to carry out lethal injections, paving the way for the state to resume executing those on death row.

CA: Over 100 Californians took their lives under right-to-die law

One hundred and eleven Californians have died with the aid of doctor-prescribed drugs since the state’s aid-in-dying law took effect last July. They were mostly white and elderly, and 60 percent had cancer.   

TN: Backers of Nashville 'sanctuary' legislation withdraw proposal

After a backlash from more conservative parts of Tennessee, the sponsors of a proposal that would have limited Nashville’s cooperation with federal immigration authorities are withdrawing the proposal.

AR: Arkansas salary panel gives 2 percent raise to state officials

The 2 percent raise will boost the salaries for the Arkansas House speaker and Senate president pro tempore from $45,000 to $45,900 a year and increase the salaries of other senators and representatives from $39,400 to $40,188 a year. Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson's salary will increase from $141,000 to $143,820.

MI: Michiganders can now leave their car running in the driveway

Michigan drivers will be able to leave their vehicles running unattended on private property under legislation signed by Republican Gov. Rick Snyder. The measure, introduced after a Detroit-area man was ticketed $128 for leaving his vehicle unattended in a driveway during the winter, leaves intact a prohibition against running a vehicle unattended on a highway.

NC: North Carolina House overrides budget veto

The North Carolina House overrode Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of the Republican-led budget plan. The $23 billion budget will give teachers an average pay raise of 3.3 percent in the coming year and will raise most other state employees’ pay by a flat $1,000. 

PA: Pennsylvania Senate OKs guns for teachers

Despite opposition from school safety experts and a veto pledge from Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf, the Pennsylvania Senate has signed off on legislation that would allow teachers and other school employees to bring their firearms to the classroom. The bill’s sponsor said the measure could help districts that cannot afford to hire more school police officers.

OR: Oregon lawmakers refuse to fund governor’s clean-air initiative

Oregon lawmakers will not fund Democratic Gov. Kate Brown's signature initiative to cut toxic air pollution statewide, forcing the state's environmental regulator to find another way to pay for the overhaul. Brown was unable to overcome industry opposition to a proposed one-time fee on the state's 2,525 permitted air polluters.

AK: Alaska Legislature may quit for the summer before passing a capital budget

The Alaska Legislature is increasingly likely to take the summer off before taking up its unfinished work of righting the state's unstable finances, according to legislative leaders.

VT: Vermont college savings plan fizzles

Two years ago, the state of Vermont passed a plan to give every baby $250 in a college savings account to encourage all Vermonters to think of themselves as college-bound. The cost was to be borne by private donors, but the private gifts never materialized and the Vermont college fund today holds $25,000 — enough to give about $2.77 to every child born this year.

FL: NOAA considers moving Florida headquarters

The federal agency that oversees hurricane research and manages fisheries along the nation’s southeast coast faces budget cuts and may relocate to another Florida city, a double whammy that could cripple partnerships that have made Miami a leader in the world of marine and atmospheric science.

VA: Virginia launches plan to care for opioid dependent moms, babies

New funding in the Virginia budget is enabling hospitals and other medical providers to work together to provide care to mothers and babies, particularly those born with drug withdraw symptoms.

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