Jen Fifield

Jen Fifield reports on rural issues for Stateline, She has covered government in Maryland and Arizona. She has won several regional journalism awards, and was recently a fellow in the Ravitch Fiscal Reporting Program at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. She graduated with honors from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

How Giant Batteries Can Help Reduce Emissions

By: - July 17, 2017

A container of batteries is installed in Minster, Ohio, the first local government to pair energy storage with solar power. Governments are eyeing energy storage as a way to reduce energy costs and carbon emissions. © Courtesy of Minster In Southern California, where an extreme energy shortage has threatened for months to shut off power […]

Arkansas Uses Tobacco Money to Cut Waiting List for Disability Services

By: - July 12, 2017

Beth Munro cares for her daughter, Caroline, who has developmental disabilities. Many states are trying to provide more services to people with disabilities. © The Pew Charitable Trusts Money from a 1999 settlement with tobacco companies has helped more people in Arkansas with developmental disabilities get the care they need. The number of people on […]

Yo Voté: Communities Scramble to Translate Ballots

By: - June 28, 2017

A “vote here” sign translated into Korean, Spanish and Vietnamese hangs near the entrance to a polling place set up in the Willston Community Center in Falls Church, Virginia. A growing number of communities are now required to translate election materials. © The Pew Charitable Trusts FALLS CHURCH, Va. — In this community center turned […]

Maine Bid to Shift Time Zones Fails

By: - June 16, 2017

Arizona resident Ray Harwood is one of a few hobbyists who have been tracking the movement across the country to abolish daylight saving time, or keep it year-round. Bills in Maine and other states have failed to get off the ground this year. © The Pew Charitable Trusts The clock ran out on a Maine […]

Why Child Abuse in Military Families May Be Going Unreported

By: - June 7, 2017

Military families face unique stresses that may put military children at higher risk of maltreatment. Pentagon officials are pushing for state laws to require better reporting of suspected child abuse and neglect. © The Associated Press Advocates for children celebrated last year when President Barack Obama signed a law meant to keep military officials from […]

What Happens When States Go Hunting for Welfare Fraud

By: - May 24, 2017

A patient applies for Medicaid at Montefiore Medical Center in New York. Several states are turning to private contractors to verify people’s eligibility for the program. © The Associated Press By the time Illinois decided to crack down on Medicaid fraud in 2012, state officials knew that many people enrolled in the program probably weren’t […]

Georgia Governor Signs Law to Create Complex Rural Jobs Program

By: - May 10, 2017

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal delivers his State of the State address. Deal, a Republican, became the second governor this year to sign a bill establishing a new tax credit meant to create jobs in rural areas. © The Associated Press Georgia is the second state this year to adopt a highly debated tax credit program […]

Using Cheese, Molasses Brine To Treat Roads With Less Salt

By: - May 1, 2017

Ontayveis Underwood sprinkles salt after clearing snow from a neighbor’s driveway and sidewalk in Saginaw, Michigan. Many states and cities are educating people on how much salt to use. © The Associated Press Herman Felstehausen and some of his neighbors in the Spring Harbor area of Madison, Wisconsin, say the water flowing out of their […]

States Grapple with Changes to Solar Industry

By: - April 26, 2017

Workers install panels on a new solar energy project being built in Florida. Many states passed laws this year to encourage the use of solar power, seeing economic or environmental benefits the industry brings. © The Associated Press As the renewable energy industry grows and becomes less expensive, states are grappling with how to regulate […]

Alabama Considers Mandating Coverage for Autism Treatment

By: - April 24, 2017

At the Autism Academy of South Carolina in Columbia, Kristen Bettencourt helps Brooke Sharpe assemble a Mr. Potato Head. Alabama is one of just five states that do not cover behavior analysis treatment for children with autism. © The Pew Charitable Trusts A bill working its way through the Alabama Legislature would require most private […]

Cities, States Seek to Protect Immigrants’ Data from Federal Officials

By: - April 20, 2017

An immigrant holds personal documents needed to register for a special California driver’s license. Many unauthorized immigrants now worry that any information they provide states and localities could be used to deport them. © The Associated Press In the face of stepped-up deportation efforts, many unauthorized immigrants worry that state and local programs that are […]

Tax Credits for Rural Jobs Cause Trouble for Some States

By: - April 20, 2017

© The Associated Press Part I: In Search of Rural Jobs, States Weigh Strategy With Checkered Past The programs are so complex, and the promises so appealing, that states typically don’t take a close look at them until it’s too late. Part II: How Savvy Financiers Pitch Complex Investment Programs Economists and policy analysts say […]