Florida senators said they were sympathetic to pleas from former felons, but voted along party lines on a bill that would make restitution a requirement of completing someone’s sentence.
California police departments have cracked down on deadly force policies. In Los Angeles, police can’t always shoot at moving vehicles. San Francisco banned choke holds. Stockton officers are required to intervene if their colleagues use excessive force.
Heralded as a boon to undocumented immigrant New Yorkers, the DREAM Act has been on hold for more than two months because of legislative language that would allow foreign nationals attending college on temporary visas to obtain state tuition assistance. The legislation was crafted to benefit so-called Dreamers, undocumented immigrant students who in many cases have lived most of their lives in America.
The Tennessee agency responsible for attracting business to the state has worked behind the scenes to dismantle legislation that could increase transparency and accountability for business grants and tax breaks. The state’s Department of Economic and Community Development officials pushed to strip nearly every significant provision from the House version of a bill designed to better protect public funds and allow taxpayers to see which companies receive tax breaks.
New Jersey environmental regulators have ordered Delaware chemical companies and others responsible for widespread contamination of drinking water systems to spend millions of dollars to assess the extent of the pollution in the state and eventually clean it up.
Colorado House Speaker KC Becker, a Democrat, introduced a bill that seeks to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 2005 levels and empowers the state’s Air Quality Control Commission to establish regulations for public utility companies as well as the oil and gas sector.
North Carolina’s Republican legislature drew new political borders three years ago, allowing Republicans to capture 10 of 13 House seats even though nearly half the votes went to Democrats. The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments over whether such partisanship violates the Constitution.
The North Dakota House passed a bill, now awaiting signature by Republican Gov. Doug Burgum, that sets penalties for organizations that conspire to harm pipelines or other infrastructure after activists tampered with a pipeline’s emergency valve in 2016. Opponents said the bill would stifle free speech.
Prompted by a sharp increase in automobile thefts by juveniles, Connecticut lawmakers are seeking ways to solve the problem, including transferring more juveniles to adult court or providing them with additional services.
The Nebraska Liquor Control Commission announced that stores must destroy any alcohol in containers that came into physical contact with floodwater. Stores are forbidden from selling such products and can only claim losses through their insurance carrier.
A bill introduced in the state House would allow more gas stations in Oregon to offer self-service pumps. Oregon and New Jersey are the only two states in the Union that don’t allow self-service gas stations statewide. Oregon lawmakers started chipping away at that prohibition two years ago, when they legalized self-service in counties with populations under 40,000.
Texas health officials are investigating a case of whooping cough at the state Capitol — an incident that is triggering discussions about vaccine policies in the state. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends whooping cough vaccination for all babies and children, preteens, teens and pregnant women, but there is no vaccine requirement for House members.
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