Editor’s Picks From Around the Web
SC: South Carolina House votes to remove Confederate flag
If Republican Gov. Nikki Haley signs the bill that was passed early Thursday, the flag could come down Friday at the South Carolina Statehouse grounds, where it has flown for five decades.
US: Credit card giant Chase settles with states over debt collection tactics
Credit card giant Chase has agreed to a million settlement with 47 states, the District of Columbia and the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau over its debt collection practices. As part of the settlement, Chase will stop collection efforts against 528,000 consumers.
CA: Hispanics now outnumber whites in California
The U.S. Census Bureau’s latest estimates make it official: California now has more Hispanic residents than white residents. It’s a sign of the demographic change sweeping the country. By the end of the decade, Hispanics should also outnumber whites in Texas; they already outnumber whites in New Mexico.
NY: New York governor to appoint special prosecutor for killings by police
With pressure mounting from families whose loved ones have died at the hands of a police officer, Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he would issue an executive order naming the state attorney general as a special prosecutor for police-related civilian deaths.
TX: Texas colleges heighten focus on campus sexual assaults
Starting this year, Texas colleges and universities will have to inform students of their sexual assault policies during freshman orientation and review and update those policies every two years. The University of Texas system is spending .7 million to conduct its biggest-ever review of sexual assault on its campuses.
FL: Proposed solar energy amendment has cities feuding
The solar choice amendment, which might appear on the November 2016 ballot, would allow homeowners and businesses to sell up to two megawatts of solar power and prohibit the state from erecting barriers to a rooftop solar market in Florida. But the measure is opposed by the state’s private and municipally-owned utility companies, which pay franchise fees in order to be the exclusive source of electric power in cities across the state.
WI: Democrats sue state election officials over 2011 redistricting
A group of Wisconsin Democrats has sued state election officials over redistricting maps drawn by Republicans four years ago that allowed their party to keep its advantage in the legislature.
LA: Court: Entire Louisiana death row doesn’t need air conditioning
Louisiana does not have to air-condition the entire death row facility at the state penitentiary at Angola, but it does need to provide some relief to three condemned killers with medical conditions, a federal appellate court ruled.
PA: Penn study shows relationship between home renovations and decreased crime in Philadelphia
Two years’ worth of data show that even basic renovations to vacant houses can contribute to a reduction in crime in Philadelphia neighborhoods. A University of Pennsylvania study looks at the rates of violent and nuisance crimes in areas where property owners replaced doors and windows to comply with a city ordinance to combat blight.
NE: Courthouse weddings could become rare in Nebraska
A judicial ethics committee has ruled that Nebraska judges and clerk magistrates cannot refuse to perform a ceremony for a gay couple while continuing to offer those same services to heterosexual couples. The opinion has prompted several clerk magistrates — many of whom have traditionally performed ceremonies at the courthouse — to decline to preside over any future marriage.
MD: Maryland governor points to Rodney King riot in disaster aid appeal
Maryland Republican Gov. Larry Hogan is pointing to precedent — a federal decision to aid Los Angeles after a 1992 riot — as he appeals the Obama administration’s decision to deny million in assistance for Baltimore this year.
KS: Kansas sets up website to report voter fraud
Republican Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who now has the power to prosecute voter fraud, has created a website so Kansans can report any suspected incidents of it.
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