Top State Stories 3/25
GA: Georgia Senate passes anti-abortion ‘heartbeat’ bill
The Georgia Senate approved what would be among the strictest abortion laws in the country on a party-line vote after more than four hours of debate. The measure, which now heads back to the House, would outlaw abortions once a doctor decides a heartbeat in the womb, which is usually at about six weeks into a pregnancy.
MT: Montana estimates GOP Medicaid expansion bill will halve number of people covered; add 84 state jobs
Montana legislators got a glimpse Friday of a state estimate showing the Republican version of a bill to continue Medicaid expansion with added work requirements would result in about half the 96,000 people on the program losing coverage.
MI: Michigan will no longer fund adoption agencies that discriminate against gays
Michigan will no longer financially support adoption and foster care agencies that refuse to work with same-sex couples and LGBTQ individuals because of religious beliefs under the terms of a settlement of a lawsuit negotiated by Democratic Attorney General Dana Nessel.
OH: Ohio cuts funding for Planned Parenthood after court OK
The Ohio Department of Health is ending grants and contracts that send money to Planned Parenthood after a divided federal appeals court upheld a state anti-abortion law that blocks public money for the group.
KY: Kentucky attorney general investigating suspected state Medicaid drug price gouging
Kentucky’s attorney general is launching an investigation into whether industry middlemen, known as pharmacy benefit managers, are overcharging the state’s Medicaid program for prescription drugs and the state employee health plan.
HI: Case exposes flaws in Hawaii’s child-abuser registry, critics say
Unlike many other states, Hawaii keeps people on the list permanently, regardless of the level of abuse. In some cases, the placements are based solely on investigative findings by the Department of Human Services, not court rulings, and some critics say the investigations are biased or not thorough.
DE: Claiming abandoned property keeps taxes low in Delaware; other states cry foul
Nearly two dozen states are trying to convince the U.S. Supreme Court to strip Delaware of its ability to seize, and then cash in on, tens of millions of dollars of official checks that go unclaimed by their recipients. Each year, Delaware seizes corporate assets that have gone unclaimed, which amounts to half a billion dollars annually.
CO: Colorado city plans ‘pay as you throw’ trash fee
Denver is preparing to launch a “pay as you throw” trash collection program, Democratic Mayor Michael Hancock announced at an elections forum. Currently, the Colorado city doesn’t charge residents for the 139,000 tons of trash it collects each year. The new model would charge for trash collection — and the cost would depend on the amount of trash.
NV: Nevada tenants rights bill would limit late fees
A Nevada bill would institute a slew of restrictions for landlords at rental properties, including limits on late fees and restrictions on discriminating against renters who receive government benefits or, for applicants for low-income housing, who have a prior history of not paying rent. It also expands the legal actions a tenant can take against a landlord.
CT: Connecticut governor calls for ethics investigation of wife
Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont, a Democrat, has asked state ethics officials for an opinion on potential conflicts of interest for his wife, a venture capitalist. Annie Lamont’s firm helps provide funding to companies mainly in the areas of health care and financial technology. Even though she is not elected, she is still considered a “public official” under the law.
MA: Massachusetts bills target lead in school water
Legislation in the Massachusetts House and Senate would force schools and child care centers to test every drinking water outlet each year and immediately shut off those that have elevated lead levels. The water outlet could be turned on only after it has produced at least two sets of certified test results showing no elevated lead levels.
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