By: - March 10, 2015 12:00 am

MO: Missouri Supreme Court takes over cases in Ferguson

The Missouri Supreme Court took the “extraordinary action” of reassigning all Ferguson municipal court cases to the circuit court starting next week. The action follows the release last week of a scathing Justice Department report on Ferguson’s police and court practices.

TX: Many along Texas border still live without clean, safe water

Along the Texas-Mexico border, nearly 90,000 people are believed to still live without running water. An untold number more — likely tens of thousands, but no one is sure — often have running water of such poor quality that they cannot know what poisons or diseases it might carry.

ME: Lawmakers oppose adding Keno to Maine’s lottery

Several state lawmakers are trying to keep the Maine State Lottery from adding the gambling game Keno at as many as 300 locations, saying the game would transform convenience stores into mini-casinos.

NV: Bill would exempt independent contractors from minimum wage in Nevada

Business owners say a bill that would exempt them from paying minimum wage to independent contractors would give them flexibility to hire people on contract. Foes say it would encourage scrimping on wages and benefits.

AR: House supports concealed firearms in some Arkansas polling places

The measure would let people with concealed-carry licenses bring their guns on Election Day into places where firearms are otherwise allowed, such as certain churches or stores. Guns would still be barred from polling places at courthouses or schools.

CT: Connecticut lawmakers question extending liquor sales hours

Legislators questioned Democratic Gov. Dannel Malloy’s proposal to make liquor sales more convenient and add $3.3 million to state coffers each year by allowing longer hours at Connecticut package stores and supermarkets.

CA: Bill would impose 10 percent cap on nonresident students at UC campuses

The Assembly bill doesn’t appear to affect nonresident students currently attending University of California campuses, where the nonresident student population exceeds the proposed 10 percent cap per campus. But those campuses would be prohibited from expanding their enrollment of nonresident students. Nonresident students make up an increasingly large amount of the system’s student body.

WV: W.Va. senators back away from repealing Common Core

In the face of opposition from state education officials, senators backed off a mandatory repeal of Common Core education standards in favor of requiring West Virginia’s superintendent of schools to conduct a review of them.

OH: Bill would ban trucks from left lanes on major Ohio highways

Big trucks and other heavy vehicles would be banned from the left lane of most major Ohio highways or face a fine of up to $150 under a bill introduced in the House. Similar legislation to keep them to the two right lanes on three-lane highways failed last year.

KS: Lawmakers debate overhaul of funding for Kansas public schools

Lawmakers began debating a bill that calls for the most sweeping changes since 1992 in the way Kansas funds its public schools. It would replace the current funding formula with block grants for the next two years, while lawmakers devise a new formula.

NC: N.C. House OKs tougher DWI laws

The House voted to toughen two state laws targeting repeat drunken drivers after sponsors pointed to 2013 statistics that showed about a third of traffic fatalities in North Carolina involved drunken drivers.

AL: Report says Alabama’s nursing home residents among least depressed

Residents of Alabama’s nursing homes are less likely to exhibit symptoms of depression that those of all but two other states in the U.S., a recent federal report shows.  Exact reasons are unclear, but the report suggests they enjoy a relatively high quality of life.

RI: Bake sales at the polls?

Cast a ballot, and buy a Rice Krispies treat? Rhode Island voters are a step closer to seeing sugary goodies at the polls after the Senate approved a bill allowing bake sales to occur at polling places on Election Day “as long as conduct does not interfere with the orderly conduct of the scheduled election.”

WA: Mapping the Seattle area’s disappearing middle class

Since 2000, 95 percent of new households in King County, Washington, have been either rich or poor – not middle class. The county executive says the extreme disparity is about “people doing really well, and people making espresso for people who are doing really well.”

Our stories may be republished online or in print under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. We ask that you edit only for style or to shorten, provide proper attribution and link to our web site. Please see our republishing guidelines for use of photos and graphics.

Stateline staff
Stateline staff

Stateline’s team of veteran journalists combines original reporting with a roundup of the latest news from sources around the country.