Editor’s Picks From Around the Web
NV: Nevada’s groundbreaking school choice law ‘a voucher on steroids’
Nevada has become the educational-choice capital of the nation with a new law that allows nearly all parents of K-12 students to opt out of sending their children to public school and use state education dollars for private, religious or home schooling, and dual-enrollment college credits.
US: Democrats wage nationwide fight over state voting rules
Democrats allied with Hillary Rodham Clinton are mounting a nationwide legal battle against a host of state voting measures, including voter identification requirements, time restrictions on early voting and rules that could nullify ballots cast in the wrong precinct.
FL: Florida Senate sends Medicaid plan to House
The Florida Senate voted 33-3 to expand Medicaid coverage to about 800,000 working poor, sending the measure to the House where it likely will be defeated.
CA: California Senate OKs requiring warrants to search smartphones, tablets
The bill would require law enforcement agencies in California to obtain a search warrant or wiretap order before searching a person’s smartphone, laptop or other electronic device, or accessing information stored on remote servers. The measure is supported by tech companies to help clarify what their obligation is in providing information to law enforcement.
AK: Alaska could accumulate employee costs even during government shutdown
Laying off 10,000 Alaska state workers, which could happen if legislative budget negotiators remain stymied, may not provide all the cost savings hoped for. Those workers could still keep collecting government checks — for unemployment benefits.
CO: New law will make Colorado schools liable for violence
Legislation to allow lawsuits against Colorado schools when there are shootings or other violence was signed by Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper. Damages would be limited to ,000 per victim or ,000 per incident when there are serious injuries or deaths from violence and the school is accused of negligence.
MO: Missouri Legislature throws Common Core test out the window
Lawmakers directed the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to sever ties with a test developer that also provided 17 other states with exams aligned with the Common Core.
KS: Kansas House passes budget that doesn’t balance
With state worker furloughs possible starting Sunday, the House approved a .4 billion budget of general fund spending that doesn’t balance. They did it with zero discussion. If the Senate passes the budget without changes, it goes to Republican Gov. Sam Brownback.
PA: Pennsylvania senators to introduce Internet gambling bill
The bill would allow existing Pennsylvania casinos to offer Internet gambling. Players would have to be in the state and have a registered account. New Jersey, Delaware and Nevada allow Internet gambling.
TX: Texas legislators mostly kept hands off local control
Republican Gov. Greg Abbott vowed a push against “unchecked overregulation” and tea party Republicans filed bills to limit local government. But except for a measure that stops cities from banning the drilling practice known as fracking, state lawmakers didn’t do much to rein in the power of local officials.
WI: Bill would allow Wisconsin judges to weigh PTSD in sentencing veterans
Wisconsin lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow judges to consider the care that veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder may need when passing sentences. It’s estimated that 20 percent of recent combat veterans suffer from the condition.
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