By: - January 9, 2023 12:00 am

US: States target transgender health care in first bills of 2023

After a midterm election and record flow of anti-transgender legislation last year, Republican state lawmakers in 11 states are zeroing in on questions of bodily autonomy with new proposals to limit gender-affirming health care and abortion access.

IL: Illinois House sends Senate bills banning certain semi-automatic weapons, expanding abortion protections

With Democratic Gov. JB Pritzker seated in the front row of the chamber, the Illinois House approved a sweeping ban on high-powered firearms about two hours after voting to shore up the state’s already expansive protections for abortion rights.

FL: Florida governor activates state Guard as migrants flow into Keys

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, activated the state’s National Guard as the Florida Keys manages a major influx of people fleeing Cuba and other Caribbean nations. The order also directs state law enforcement agencies and other state agencies to provide resources.

NM: New Mexico settles over allegations of rape, sex abuse at women’s prisons

The state of New Mexico spent at least ,000 last year to settle allegations of rape and sexual abuse at its women’s prisons. The settlements resolved legal claims filed by seven inmates — each of whom accused correctional officers of sexual misconduct, according to records reviewed by theAlbuquerque Journal.

ME: Maine property owners who discovered .5B lithium deposit are fighting in court to mine it

A couple in Maine hoping to excavate what may be theworld’s richest lithium depositon their property has taken their case to Superior Court in an effort to clarify what is considered a metal under the state’s 2017 mining law, one of the strictest in the nation.

KS:Kansas abuse investigation targets Catholic clergy

The Kansas Bureau of Investigation’s four-year inquiry into alleged child sexual abuse in four Catholic dioceses and a breakaway Catholic sect in the state resulted in referral of 30 cases to county prosecutors targeting 14 clergy members.

OH: Ohio governor signs photo ID requirement, election changes into law

Ohio Republican Gov. Mike DeWine signed a major overhaul of state election laws that will require voters to present a photo ID at the polls. Under the new law, voters must present a photo ID when they cast their ballot in person, although the ID doesn’t need to have their current address on it.

ME: Maine property owners who discovered .5B lithium deposit is fighting in court to mine it

A couple in Maine hoping to excavate what may be theworld’s richest lithium depositon their property has taken their case to Superior Court in an effort to clarify what is considered a metal under the state’s 2017 mining law, one of the strictest in the nation.

WY: Demand for Wyoming coal is collapsing

For 37 years and counting, U.S. power plants have burned more coal from Wyoming than from any other state. Every person in Wyoming has benefited, directly or indirectly, from coal money. But with most of the U.S. electricity sector now building toward a future after coal, Wyoming’s dominance — along with its income — is fading fast.

MT: Montana education agency wants penalty for teachers who don’t warn of sex ed

A teacher who fails to give parents and guardians advance notice of “human sexuality instruction” may be punished if the Montana Office of Public Instruction turns a legislative priority into a signed bill. As proposed by the agency, educators who don’t alert parents within 48 hours of related lessons or events would be subject to a “gross neglect of duty” penalty.

SC: Abortion ruling puts debate back in center stage for 2023 South Carolina legislative session

South Carolina legislative leaders hoped pocketbook issues and public safety would be the guiding themes for the 2023 legislative session. But the state Supreme Court’s decision to toss out the state’s six-week abortion ban likely blew up the priority list.

MI: Michigan asks residents to report wild turkeys

If any turkeys are spotted in the wild this month, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources wants to know about it. The wild turkey resurgence in Michigan is one of the greatest wildlife conservation stories, according to the agency. To assist in their studies, the department is asking the public to report any January sightings.

LA: Education, roads and bridges likely winners amid .5B surplus in Louisiana

For the second straight year, higher education, public school teachers and roads and bridges in Louisiana are poised to be the big winners amid booming state revenue. 

MN: All Minnesota workers could take paid leave under Democratic plan

With Democrats stepping into full control of state government and listing paid leave as a top priority, Minnesota appears likely to join 11 other states with such programs. Employees could qualify for up to 12 weeks of paid leave to care for a family member, such as a newborn or sick parent, as well as 12 weeks of medical leave if they get sick, under the measure lawmakers are considering.

WA: 5 issues to watch as Washington legislature convenes

After two years of debates, committee meetings and votes on Zoom, Washington legislators will return in person to the Capitol. In the 105-day session, legislative leaders and Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee have signaled they’ll tackle thorny issues including homelessness, public safety, drug possession, abortion rights and gun violence.

WI: Wisconsin will ban TikTok on state devices over cybersecurity concerns

Wisconsin will join the growing list of states to ban the use of the popular social media site TikTok on all state-issued devices over cybersecurity concerns. Democratic Gov. Tony Evers said he would issue an executive order by early this week.

TX: Sky-high Texas property tax bills finally went down in 2022

Homeowners in Houston, San Antonio and many other Texas cities found something they don’t normally see in their property taxes last year: a tax cut.More relief could be coming as the state’s Republican political leaders are vowing to make property tax cuts a priority during the next legislative session, which starts Tuesday.

AK: Alaska bans TikTok on state devices

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy, a Republican, banned the use of the social media app TikTok on all state-owned devices. In a memo sent to state commissioners and executive staff, Dunleavy cited national security concerns about the app.

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Stateline staff
Stateline staff

Stateline’s team of veteran journalists combines original reporting with a roundup of the latest news from sources around the country.