California

Some State Progress in Deadly Opioid Crisis | 04-20-2018

Thirteen states have made progress in battling the deadly opioid epidemic while eight states have notably failed to deal with the crisis, according to a report issued this month by the National Safety Council (NSC). It comes on the heels of a report earlier...

States Looking for Cure to High Drug Prices | 03-30-2018

During his State of the Union speech in February, President Donald Trump declared his intention to address what he called “the injustice of high drug prices.” He repeated the promise last month in New Hampshire during a press conference on...

The Rewards and Perils of Redistricting | 03-16-2018

In democracies, voters are supposed to choose their legislative representatives. Increasingly, however, U.S. courts have found that representatives choose their voters through partisan gerrymandering of legislative and congressional districts. With...

Politics in Brief - March 12 2018 | 03-08-2018

MARYLAND SENATE PASSES TAX RETURN MEASURE : The MARYLAND Senate approved a measure last week that would require presidential candidates to release their tax returns as a prerequisite for getting on the Old Line State ballot. That bill, SB 256 , is...

Over Half of States Seeking to Maintain ‘Net Neutrality’ | 03-02-2018

At least 29 states have introduced legislation this year aimed at reinstating the requirement that internet service providers treat all content the same in terms of price and accessibility, which was eliminated last year with the Federal Communications...

Helping the Dreamers: The Clock is Ticking | 02-16-2018

States have a vital stake in federal action to rescue the beleaguered program called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Instituted by President Barack Obama in 2012 by executive order, DACA has protected from deportation nearly 800,000 young...

Job Vacancies Taking Toll at State Agencies | 02-09-2018

Job vacancies at government agencies are up from coast to coast. About 11 percent of the positions in Maryland’s executive branch are currently unfilled, about twice the rate in 2010. Between 15 and 17 percent of the clerk positions at courts that...

State Charitable Giving Programs Model for SALT Cap Workaround | 01-12-2018

In response to the $10,000 cap on the federal deduction for state and local taxes (SALT) included in the federal tax overhaul, lawmakers in high-tax states like California are considering allowing taxpayers to make charitable contributions to state funds...

Govs Cry Foul Over FL Drilling Exemption | 01-12-2018

Coastal states reacted with alarm last week when the Trump administration announced it was expanding oil drilling leases in waters previously protected under the Obama administration. But when U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced that after a...

States With Most to Lose by Elimination of SALT Deduction | 12-15-2017

Taxpayers in nine high-income, high-tax states claimed more than 60 percent of the state and local tax (SALT) deductions on federal tax returns nationwide in 2014, according to the Tax Foundation. Seven of those states, which include California, where...

2018: A Year of Living Dangerously | 12-15-2017

The shadow of President Donald Trump and the Republican tax bill will hover over state governing bodies in 2018, a year of midterm elections that Tim Storey, political analyst for the National Conference of State Legislatures, says will be “a referendum...

Most States Taking Action on Cybersecurity | 12-08-2017

As of Oct. 30 at least 43 states had introduced over 240 bills and resolutions related to cybersecurity this year, according to analysis of LexisNexis State Net data by the National Conference of State Legislatures. Twenty-seven of those states have enacted...

More Familiar Issues Likely to Draw State Lawmakers’ Attention in 2018 | 12-08-2017

As SNCJ ’s Rich Ehisen reported last week, some of the issues likely to receive the most attention from state lawmakers next year are those that are already familiar, such as health care, the opioid epidemic and sexual harassment. Here are several...

Business - November 20 2017 | 11-17-2017

MD Adopts Rule Montgomery County, MARYLAND (D) adopts rules making it the first jurisdiction in the Old Line State to adopt a $15-an-hour minimum wage. The new minimum goes into effect in 2021 for businesses with at least 51 employees, with those between...

States Preparing for Legal Sports Betting | 11-10-2017

Thirteen states have introduced and three have passed legislation this year dealing with the legalization of sports betting, currently prohibited in all but a handful of states by the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) passed by Congress...

Politics In Brief - October 2 2017 | 09-29-2017

DHS CONTACTS STATES ABOUT 2016 ELECTION HACKING The Department of Homeland Security directly notified election officials in 21 states last month that they had been targeted by hackers connected to the Russian government during the 2016 election campaign...

New Strategy For Public Election Financing | 09-01-2017

The hope that public financing of elections might eventually get big private money out of politics ended with the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2010 decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission , eliminating limits on political spending by...

Politics In Brief - September 4 2017 | 09-01-2017

JUSTICE ALITO STAYS TX CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT REDRAW U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito temporarily stayed a lower-court ruling requiring two TEXAS congressional districts to be redrawn because they discriminated against minority voters, “pending...

States Pushing Ahead With Private Sector Pension Plans | 06-02-2017

Undaunted by opposition from Wall Street, Congress and the Trump administration – or by potential litigation down the road – a growing number of states are moving forward with implementing state-run pension plans for millions of private-sector...

Politics In Brief - May 15 2017 | 05-12-2017

Congress Blocks State Retirement Plans Congress voted to eliminate an Obama-administration rule removing regulatory hurdles obstructing states from creating retirement programs for workers who don’t have access to retirement plans through their...

Environment - April 3 2017 | 03-31-2017

California Air Resources Board Approval The CALIFORNIA Air Resources Board approves new rules that will require oil and gas companies above a certain size to implement vapor recovery systems that will allow for methane that would otherwise be lost...

Majority of States Have Expanded Medicaid Under ACA | 12-16-2016

Thirty-one states and the District of Columbia have expanded Medicaid in accordance with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) but left to states discretion by the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius in...

Public Pension Return Rates Lagging In States | 08-19-2016

Investment returns for large public pension plans in the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2015 were significantly lower than the plans’ assumed rates of return, according to money management news source Pensions & Investments . The one-year return...

Most States Allow Transportation Network Companies | 08-12-2016

Thirty-seven states have passed laws regulating transportation network companies (TNCs), according to the R Street Institute and LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking database. The most recent addition to that group is Delaware, where Gov...

Value Of $1 Relative In States | 08-12-2016

The value of a dollar varies by 30 percent between some states, according to the Regional Price Parities (RPPs) - measures of how much the price of goods and services in states and metropolitan areas differs from the national average in a given year ...

Texas et al Win Challenge To Obama Immigration Policy | 07-15-2016

Twenty-five states joined Texas in challenging President Obama’s executive actions on immigration policy in November 2014, expanding temporary relief from deportation for undocumented immigrants. Fifteen states also filed amicus, or “friend...

Little Correlation Between Gun Laws and Worst Mass Shootings | 07-08-2016

Three of the eight states where the deadliest mass shootings since 1984 have occurred - California, Connecticut and New York - are among those with the strictest gun laws, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. None of those shootings took...

Majority of States Have Minimum Wage Higher Than Federal Standard | 05-20-2016

As of last month, 29 states had a minimum wage that was higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Two of those states, California and New York, have also passed laws that will gradually...

Majority of States Looking at Daily Fantasy Sports | 05-13-2016

Thirty-three states have considered legislation related to daily fantasy sports this year, according to LegalSportsReport.com and LexisNexis State Net legislative data. DFS bills have been passed in four states, including Virginia, which enacted two....

Business - May 16 2016 | 05-13-2016

CO Endorses SB 40 The COLORADO Senate endorses SB 40 , a bill that allows non-residents to invest in pot shops starting in 2017 provided at least one controlling owner or investor resides in-state. Current law restricts investors and owners to people...

Governors In Brief - May 16 2016 | 05-13-2016

Cuomo Forms Opioid Task Force Noting that accidental overdose is the leading cause of death in his state, NEW YORK Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) announced he is forming a task force to combat growing heroin and prescription opioid abuse in the Empire State...

Drone Laws Passed In Over Half of States In Last Few Years | 05-05-2016

Since 2013, 27 states have enacted laws addressing unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), or drones, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. The laws generally define what UAS or drones are and specify how they can be used by law enforcement...

Education - May 2 2016 | 04-29-2016

CA Approves AB 1594 The CALIFORNIA Assembly approves AB 1594 , which would bar the use of standard and electronic cigarettes on California State University and community college campuses. It moves to the Senate (SACRAMENTO BEE). MD Gov Signs SB...

Business - April 11 2016 | 04-08-2016

Business In CA CALIFORNIA Gov. Jerry Brown(D) signs SB 3 , which will raise the Golden State minimum wage to $15 by 2022, with so-called “off ramps” for years in which the economy is struggling (LEXISNEXIS STATE NET). Business in NY...

More States Oppose Obama Immigration Policy Than Support | 03-18-2016

Texas and twenty-five other states have filed suit to block President Obama’s executive actions in November shielding undocumented immigrants from deportation for three years, according to the Pew Research Center. Twelve states have filed an amicus...

Few States Focusing On Self-Driving Vehicles | 03-11-2016

Since 2011, when Nevada became the first state to authorize the operation of self-driving cars, five other states -- California, Florida, Michigan, North Dakota and Tennessee -- have enacted legislation, and Arizona’s governor has issued an executive...

Majority of States Have Good Samaritan Laws | 03-04-2016

States have enacted numerous laws to combat the epidemic of opioid-related deaths plaguing much of the United States. Most common are so-called “Good Samaritan” laws that generally give a person civil or criminal immunity for seeking help...

States Still Divesting from Iran | 02-12-2016

Twenty-two states and the District of Columbia have laws on the books prohibiting at least some state pension or retirement funds from investing in companies that do a certain amount of business in Iran. Ten of those states also have laws on the books...

Budgets In Brief - February 1 2016 | 01-29-2016

MD Lawmakers Overturn Hotel Tax Change MARYLAND’s Democrat-controlled General Assembly overturned five of Republican Gov. Larry Hogan’s vetoes from last year, including two measures requiring online hotel booking services like Travelocity...

Environment - December 14 2015 | 12-11-2015

The U.S. House of Representatives approves HR 1321, a bill that would ban the use of microbeads, small bits of plastic found in a variety of personal products like soap and toothpaste. At least eight states, including ILLINOIS, COLORADO, CONNECTICUT,...

Potpourri - December 14 2015 | 12-11-2015

The U.S. Supreme Court declines to hear a challenge to an ILLINOIS city’s ban on semiautomatic, high-capacity assault weapons. The city, Highland Park, is a suburb of Chicago. Seven states — MARYLAND, CALIFORNIA, CONNECTICUT, HAWAII, MASSACHUSETTS...

Governors In Brief - November 23 2015 | 11-20-2015

Brown in Paris CALIFORNIA Gov. Jerry Brown (D) said he is still planning to attend a United Nations climate change summit in Paris next month. The summit is scheduled to go on in spite of the wave of terrorist attacks carried out in the City of Light...

Pre-election voting restricted in many states | 09-18-2015

In most states eligible voters can cast their votes before Election Day, either by going to the polls during designated early voting periods or by voting via absentee ballot. But 30 states have no early voting period, although 13 of those states allow...

Crime & Law Enforcement - August 17 2015 | 08-14-2015

CT Declares Capital Punishment Unconstitutional The CONNECTICUT Supreme Court declares capital punishment to be unconstitutional, effectively barring the death penalty in that state (WASHINGTON POST). MD Use of DNA In Unsolved Crimes The MARYLAND...

Social Policy - June 1 2015 | 05-29-2015

CA Approves AB 2175 The CALIFORNIA Assembly approves AB 2175, a bill that requires so-called “crisis pregnancy centers” to provide women with information about reproductive services available elsewhere, including abortion, and to disclose...

Business - May 18 2015 | 05-15-2015

CA Assembly Approves AB 202 The CALIFORNIA Assembly approves AB 202, legislation that would make cheerleaders for professional sports teams employees of those franchises. It moves to the Senate (SACRAMENTO BEE). Also in CALIFORNIA , the Assembly approves...

Politics In Brief - April 20 2015 | 04-17-2015

MD Passes Major Changes to Open Records Law Both chambers of MARYLAND’s General Assembly overwhelmingly passed legislation making major changes to the state’s open records law, including the creation of a new ombudsman in the Office of...