AL: Alabama House votes for Roe v. Wade challenge
If the Alabama measure passes the Senate and gets signed by Republican Gov. Kay Ivey, it would be one of the most sweeping abortion restrictions in the nation. The measure is meant to challenge Roe v. Wade, the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion.
TX: Texas may finally kill a program that can land poor people in jail for traffic fines
The Texas House unanimously moved to repeal the tough-to-kill Driver Responsibility Program, which critics say traps low-income drivers in a cycle of debt. The program adds additional yearly fees on top of the price of a ticket, from a year for a few traffic tickets to ,000 for driving while intoxicated.
NY: Measles outbreak: Why a bid to end religious exemptions stalled in New York
As New York has emerged as the epicenter of a national outbreak of measles, local lawmakers and health officials struggle to compel some ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities, where most of the cases have been found, to drop their resistance to vaccinations.
FL: Florida lawmakers approved armed teachers bill
The Florida legislature approved letting armed teachers on campus in response to the Parkland shooting. School districts must opt-in to the “Guardian program,” which allows staff to carry guns after screening.
WA: Washington state greenlights delivery robots on sidewalks
Washington state will soon allow autonomous delivery robots on sidewalks. Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee signed a bill into law that establishes new regulations for “personal delivery devices” like the delivery robot Amazon unveiled earlier this year.
OR: Effort to end ‘prison gerrymandering’ would alter Oregon’s political map
A bill would shake up how prisoners are considered on Oregon’s political map. It would ensure inmates aren’t counted as residents of a prison when legislative districts are redrawn in 2021. Instead, they’d be counted as residents of the place they lived before incarceration.
CA: Costs for California’s high-speed rail project may increase by .8 billion
The cost of building a 119-mile section of the California bullet train in the Central Valley is projected to increase by .8 billion, taking the total to .4 billion.
ID: Idaho won’t release seized hemp: legal in U.S., but illegal in the state
A federal judge approved the release of test results on 7,000 pounds of what Idaho State Police said was marijuana. It was industrial hemp. Big Sky Scientific, the company that owns the hemp, sued Idaho State Police asking for the release. While industrial hemp is legal across the county, it’s still illegal in Idaho.
ME: Maine governor proposes climate council to pursue emissions, energy goals
Maine Democratic Gov. Janet Mills unveiled her proposal for a Maine Climate Change Council that would recommend ways to meet ambitious goals on lowering the state’s greenhouse gas emissions and increasing renewable energy generation.
MT: Montana governor signs bill meant to lower some insurance premiums
Montana Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock has signed legislation meant to lower premiums for Montana customers who receive health insurance through the Affordable Care Act’s individual marketplace. The bill creates a reinsurance program for high-cost claims so those costs aren’t included in determining premiums.
TN: Tennessee House approves compromise on school vouchers
Tennessee’s school voucher legislation is now headed to the desk of Gov. Bill Lee, giving the first-term Republican a win three months after taking office. Savings accounts will provide public money for parents who unenroll a student from a school district and allow them to use it for private school.
NV: Nevada city approves marijuana lounges
The Las Vegas City Council voted to allow so-called social use venues where people can consume marijuana, making the city the first in Nevada — and one of the few nationwide — to allow the practice. The draft ordinance was opposed by gaming officials, who said they worried about running afoul of federal law if lounges were located close to casinos.
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