Top State Stories 7/14
AZ: Arizona moves to impose 1800s abortion ban as attorney general asks court to lift injunction
Arizona is one step closer to reviving a law from its territorial days that mandates prison time for abortion providers. Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, a Republican, asked for the lifting of an injunction against the law now that the U.S. Supreme Court has overturned Roe v. Wade.
CA: California’s local governments face violent disruption; officials say they need protection
During the pandemic, local public meetings in California descended into ugly and sometimes violent spectacles. New legislation may provide towns and counties with more guidance and safety.
IN: Indiana attorney general will investigate 10-year-old’s abortion
Indiana GOP Attorney General Todd Rokita said his office planned to investigate whether a state doctor fulfilled reporting requirements after helping a 10-year-old rape victim who crossed state lines from Ohio to have an abortion. State law in Ohio bans abortion after about six weeks with no exceptions for rape or incest; Indiana allows them up to 22 weeks.
TN: Tennessee to launch controversial school voucher program for upcoming school year
Tennessee Republican Gov. Bill Lee announced a school voucher program will begin after a court order lifted an injunction that had blocked its launch. The program allows eligible students to choose public money for their education and apply it to private school tuition.
MI: Michigan governor cites 19th century sexism in effort to overturn state abortion ban
Michigan Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is seeking to convince the state Supreme Court to overturn a 1931 law criminalizing abortion, arguing that sexism was fundamental to the early anti-abortion legislation and its forerunners in the 1800s.
SC: Planned Parenthood files lawsuit to stall South Carolina’s anti-abortion law, citing privacy rights
A collection of abortion rights advocates is suing South Carolina over the state’s newly installed “Fetal Heartbeat Act,” saying it violates residents’ right to privacy.
FL: Florida nursing shortage expected to grow
By 2035, Florida will face a shortage of 60,000 nurses, a sharp increase from the deficit of 17,000 reported in 2019. State hospitals are already understaffed, and a third of all nurses say they’re likely to leave the field by the end of the year.
WA: Washington Supreme Court to hear challenge to new capital gains tax
The Washington Supreme Court will decide the legality of the state’s new capital gains tax in a case with hundreds of millions of dollars of tax revenue on the line and the potential to overturn decades of precedent.
OR: Oregon spent .4M on a digital COVID vaccine card few are using
Oregonians have used the state’s $2.4 million digital COVID-19 vaccine card program only about 50,000 times, far less than people in Washington have used a state app and at more than twice the cost. Oregon released its vaccine card web application in late April with fanfare, but relatively few are opting to use it.
CO: Colorado health insurance prices set to jump next year
Health insurance prices for many Coloradans could rise by as much as 11% next year, the largest jump in five years. The increases are for plans sold in the small group and individual markets where people shop for their own insurance.
UT: Child care employees in Utah to get bonuses amid labor shortage
Utah will be offering a one-time, $2,000 bonus to eligible child care employees across the state. The bonus is expected to benefit 12,000 people.
CT: Report: Thousands fewer Connecticut children in child care
Child care providers across Connecticut are still operating well below capacity more than two years after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic—a threat to the sector’s overall viability and a vexing source of uncertainty for parents trying to return to work and employers looking for help, according to a new state report.
KS: Retired Kansas teachers will have an easier path back to the classroom
Kansas’ new transitional license option, intended for retired educators whose prior teaching credentials have been lapsed for at least six months, streamlines the process and eliminates application fees and professional development requirements needed for typical license renewals.
TX: Texans asked to conserve energy to protect the power grid for the 2nd time in a week
For the second time this week, the state’s power grid operator is asking Texans to turn up their thermostats to 78 degrees and to avoid using large appliances as it expects record-high demand for power amid ongoing scorching temperatures.
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