A girl eats her school lunch.

More states line up to serve free school meals to all kids

BY: - May 26, 2023

During his long career as a high school teacher, New York state Sen. John Mannion often reached into his own pocket to cover the cost of lunches for kids who didn’t have the funds. “I watched kids get to the end of the line and not have enough money on their cards,” the Democrat said […]

A 4-Day Workweek Gains Lawmaker Support in Some States

BY: - March 28, 2023

The Original Oyster House, billed as Pittsburgh’s oldest restaurant, found itself in crisis during the pandemic. Down to seven employees — including owner Jen Grippo and her mother — the staff worked six or seven days a week to keep up with orders. Grippo closed the Oyster House entirely in January 2021, determined to give […]

States Seek to Ease Child Care Crunch

BY: - March 24, 2023

States are spending more money and creating new incentives to ease the severe child care crisis, with most federal pandemic aid set to dry up in September. The child care shortage costs the United States billion in lost earnings, productivity and revenue each year, according to ReadyNation, a consortium of business leaders under the umbrella […]

A Slew of State Proposals Shows the Threat of ‘Forever Chemicals’

BY: - February 14, 2023

In rivers and groundwater, in human bloodstreams and products ranging from cosmetics to food packaging to carpets, researchers are increasingly finding “forever chemicals” that don’t break down naturally and are shown to cause myriad health issues. State lawmakers across the country want to tackle the growing problem. Several states have passed landmark laws in recent […]

More Millennials Are Leaving the Nest to Form Their Own Households

BY: - February 1, 2023

From 2016 to 2021, nearly every state saw a spike in the number of young adults between the ages of 25 and 44 forming new households, a development with far-reaching implications for state populations, economic growth and infrastructure. For many millennials, the economic fallout of the Great Recession a decade and a half ago postponed […]

Lack of Rural Lawyers Leaves Much of America Without Support

BY: - January 24, 2023

While the running joke may be that there are too many lawyers in the world, in many rural places in the United States, there are demonstrably too few. Despite efforts in recent years by a handful of states, universities and legal associations to ease the problem, there remains a glaring lack of lawyers in many […]

Supreme Court Admissions Case Could Upend Environmental Justice Laws

BY: - December 7, 2022

In recent years, more states have crafted environmental justice policies to help communities of color plagued by polluted air and water, poor health outcomes and limited access to green space. But now they fear that work could be upended by a pair of pending U.S. Supreme Court cases examining affirmative action admissions policies at universities. If the court […]

More States Offer Health Coverage to Immigrant Children

BY: - December 6, 2022

A small but growing number of states are extending government health benefits to children regardless of their immigration status. Come January, Connecticut and New Jersey will join the nine states plus Washington, D.C., that already allow children without permanent legal status to enroll in either Medicaid, the public health plan for residents with lower incomes, […]

Don’t Vote for Just One: Ranked Choice Voting Is Gaining Ground

BY: - December 2, 2022

Last month, voters in Nevada, Seattle and at least six other jurisdictions around the country approved measures to change how they elect their leaders. Instead of voting for just one candidate, they instead will rank a slate of candidates. Ranked choice voting has seen steady success in recent years. Nationwide, 62 jurisdictions have adopted the […]

Inflation Is Cutting Into States’ Big Infrastructure Windfall

BY: - November 30, 2022

When Ohio transportation officials got the bids back in spring for the next phase of an expansion of Interstate 75 north of Cincinnati, they had a rude awakening. Inflation had driven up the mega-project’s cost by about million above the million state engineers had estimated. Officials decided to redesign the project, break it up into […]

E-Bikes Gain Momentum as a Climate, Traffic Solution

BY: - October 14, 2022

In the quest to electrify the transportation sector, some state and city leaders see the future arriving not on four wheels, but on two. As electric bicycles, or e-bikes, grow in popularity, enthusiasts increasingly see them as a tool to reduce auto traffic and air pollution, not just as a fun new toy. States, cities […]

Carrots for Carrots: States Promote Buying Local for School Lunches

BY: - September 30, 2022

What’s for lunch? For millions of school students, the answer may be fresh lettuce and tomatoes, apples and carrots grown by nearby farmers, or, in a few states, fresh lamb or haddock, raised or caught locally. Local foods, once rare on school lunch trays, are gradually becoming more available in school cafeterias as states promote […]