Top State Stories 10/5
OK: Oklahoman governor approves gender care ban; calls for statewide action
GOP Gov. Kevin Stitt signed legislation that will immediately block Oklahoma Children’s Hospital at OU Health from providing some gender care to LGBTQ youth. Stitt also called on the Oklahoma legislature to enact during the 2023 legislative session a statewide ban on “irreversible gender transition surgeries and hormone therapies on minors.”
FL: Florida to bolster electric system after storm outages
Less than a week after Hurricane Ian knocked out power to large swaths of Florida, state regulators approved utilities’ long-term plans to try to bolster the electric system.
WA: Washington hospitals face more service cuts
Washington hospitals faced another round of record financial losses as health care systems continue to recover from the pandemic, prompting some service cuts in parts of the state.
MI: Michigan judge throws out charges in Flint water scandal
A Michigan judge threw out felony charges against seven people in the Flint water scandal, including two former state health officials blamed for deaths from Legionnaires’ disease.
NC: North Carolina court hears new arguments on maps
Legislative leaders sought to cement their ability to gerrymander districts without courts being able to strike them down, in arguments they made to the North Carolina Supreme Court.
MN: Minnesota nursing schools team up to confront severe shortage
Minnesota nursing schools are banding together to recruit more students and address a shortage that is poised to leave hospitals and clinics severely understaffed throughout the next few years.
DE: Elevated levels of lead found in water at 47 Delaware schools
Elevated lead levels in water were found at nearly 50 Delaware schools, prompting the Delaware Division of Public Health to advise shutting off at least one school’s drinking water supply.
TX: Texas elections officials face conspiracy theorists, 16-hour days ahead of midterms
The scrutiny Texas elections administrators face has grown — even in small Republican-controlled counties that former President Donald Trump carried.
DC: DC Council advances bill to allow noncitizens to vote in local elections
The bill would amend the District of Columbia’s election code and permit all noncitizen residents in Washington, D.C., including green-card holders, temporary residents on visas and immigrants without legal status, to vote in local elections, provided they meet the remaining requirements for voting in the District.
NY: COVID rates rise in New York
COVID-19 levels are rising again in New York, at a time when pandemic-era safety measures have all but disappeared, with masking gone by the wayside, mass vaccination sites closed and some data tracking — such as cases in schools — eliminated.
LA: Louisiana officials use campaign cash to buy sports tickets
Forty-nine Louisiana politicians spent ,600 from their campaign accounts and political action committees on tickets to sporting events in 2020 and 2021, according to a review of state campaign finance records.
NE: Nebraska considers problem-solving courts to solve prison crowding
Grappling with nation-leading prison growth, Nebraska officials are looking at ways to expand the state’s problem-solving courts as a potential solution. Problem-solving courts are intensive supervised treatment programs for high-risk, high-need felony offenders that seek to change their behaviors and reduce recidivism and incarceration rates.
SD: Rural South Dakota faces vet shortage
As populations decline in rural South Dakota, the demand for rural veterinarians to serve livestock has not — a problem that’s plagued the industry for decades.
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