By: - August 25, 2015 12:00 am

CA: California poised to pass nation’s toughest equal pay law

The California Fair Pay Act would make it more difficult for employers to pay men more than women for work that’s substantially similar and would protect women from retaliation if they talk about how much their male counterparts earn.

MO: Major municipal court changes announced in Ferguson, Missouri

The top municipal court judge in Ferguson announced that the Missouri city will erase about 10,000 arrest warrants and change its pre-trial release program. The changes are part of reforms taking place across a number of St. Louis County courts in an effort to meet new court-reform requirements set by state legislation taking effect this week.

WA: NRA sues Seattle over firearms tax, arguing Washington state law is preeminent

The National Rifle Association and two other major gun-rights groups sued Seattle to try to overturn the $25 local tax on firearms and ammunition sales approved earlier this month. The plaintiffs argue that a 35-year-old Washington law gives the state authority over gun legislation.

IL: Illinois governor dumps treatment from anti-heroin measure, citing cost

Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner sought to rewrite a measure aimed at curbing heroin use by eliminating a requirement that the state’s Medicaid health care program for the poor pay for medication and therapy programs to treat addiction. He said Illinois cannot afford the extra cost of the treatment approved by the legislature.

LA: New Orleans’ finances have improved since Katrina but remain vulnerable

Moody’s Investors Service credits a combination of rising sales taxes and spending discipline for New Orleans’ improved condition. However, rising debt service costs and retiree health care and pension obligations threaten the Louisiana city’s long-term fiscal health.

AL: Alabama redistricting battle back in federal court

Three federal judges will hear arguments Tuesday over this question: Did the Alabama Legislature try to reduce the voice of minority voters with a new map for state legislative districts?

AZ: Overtime pay in Arizona prisons soars to nearly $40 million

The Arizona Department of Corrections spent $39.1 million on overtime pay and expenses last fiscal year to compensate for roughly 550 open correctional officer positions at Arizona’s 10 state-run prisons.

SC: Abuse reports, cases spike at South Carolina child-welfare agency

Calls reporting possible child abuse and neglect have increased 25 percent since January at South Carolina’s child-welfare agency, leading to a 41 percent increase in opened cases. The agency’s new director says more caseworkers and better technology are needed.

PA: Pennsylvania commissioner says insurers can’t use ‘price optimization’

Insurance companies operating in Pennsylvania have been told that they cannot use price optimization — raising rates on customers who are less likely to shop around — to set prices for property and casualty policies. Consumer advocates say the practice unfairly targets low-income customers.

ME: Maine group wants referendum on gun sales background checks

The proposed ballot initiative, which is supported by the parents of a slain Portland woman and a parents group formed after the Sandy Hook, Conn., school massacre, would require criminal background checks on gun sales at Maine gun shows and between individuals.

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.