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Editor’s Picks From Around the Web
NE: Nebraska prison investigation puts blame on governor
A bipartisan legislative committee said Republican Gov. Dave Heineman’s failure to declare an overcrowding “emergency” prompted the Department of Correctional Services and administration to deal with crowded conditions “in the shadows,” and at times outside the law.
KY: Kentucky appeals court hears case that threatens libraries
Most of the state’s public library systems could be forced to roll back their tax rates and collectively refund millions of dollars to local taxpayers under a pair of lawsuits alleging that library districts have improperly raised rates without voter approval as required by law.
VA: Virginia governor seeks to reinstate restrictions on handgun sales
Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe asked lawmakers to reinstate a law allowing buyers to purchase only one handgun a month, which had been repealed during his Republican predecessor’s administration.
MD: Maryland budget shortfall swells after latest revenue estimates
A two-year budget shortfall facing Republican Gov.-elect Larry Hogan has swelled to nearly .2 billion after a state panel revised its forecasts for tax collections to reflect still-sluggish growth in Maryland’s economy.
SD: Payday loans could cease in South Dakota
Unusual political allies have joined together to back a campaign in South Dakota to ban payday lending.
TX: Texas battle over immigration appears likely
Members of tea party groups, business leaders and elected officials agree that the upcoming legislative session likely will feature heated debates and emotional fights over immigration-related legislation — possibly within the same party.
LA: Audit: School district failed to account for million in property
The Recovery School District failed to account for more than million in property, mostly computers and laptops, in the current financial year, the legislative auditor said. The district oversees 59 Louisiana public schools the state has taken over for poor performance.
AK: Governor takes ax to Alaska’s capital budget
Independent Gov.-elect Bill Walker submitted to the legislature a proposed million capital budget designed to help the state weather a .5 billion deficit and totaling a fraction of what the state has spent on capital projects in recent years.
WV: After marriage equality victory, lawyers want government to pay them
Now that same-sex couples have won the right to marry in West Virginia, attorneys who argued their case want to be paid. But county officials say they don’t think the government should have to pay because they had no choice but to defend the state’s law.
WI: Plaintiffs in gay marriage case seek more than million in costs
Wisconsin taxpayers may have to pay more than million in legal costs to the same-sex couples and attorneys who successfully sued the state over its constitutional ban against gay marriage.
FL: With gun violence in the spotlight, some push for increased access to firearms
Recent shootings around the country have left many reexamining police departments and policies. But they’ve also led to a renewed focus on personal protection with increased gun sales and a legislative proposal to allow guns on college campuses.
ME: Governor lays out final term agenda
Newly re-elected Maine Gov. Paul LePage says his focus during his final four-year term will be welfare reform, spending reform, lowering energy costs and reducing the size of government. The Republican said a government that is “too big and too expensive” discourages job creation.
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