New York

Politics in Brief - April 23 2018 | 04-20-2018

NY AG SEEKS AUTHORITY TO PROSECUTE PRESIDENTIAL PARDONEES: NEW YORK Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is seeking to change the state’s double jeopardy law to exempt cases involving presidential pardons. The change, if approved by the state’s...

Business - April 16 2018 | 04-13-2018

TN House Rejects SB 1086 The TENNESSEE House rejects SB 1086 , a Senate-endorsed bill that would strip local municipalities of the ability to ban short term rentals like Airbnb and VRBO. The measure is expected to go to a joint conference committee...

Governors In Brief - April 16 2018 | 04-13-2018

BROWN AGREES TO SEND CA TROOPS TO BORDER In a somewhat surprising move, CALIFORNIA Gov. Jerry Brown (D) agreed last week to President Donald Trump’s request to send National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border. But in a letter to Sect. of...

Sports Wagering Getting Play in States This Year | 04-05-2018

Fourteen states have introduced over 40 bills dealing with sports betting this year, according to LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking system . Four states - Illinois, Kansas, Missouri and West Virginia - account for more than half of the...

Budgets in Brief - April 9 2018 | 04-05-2018

HICKENLOOPER SIGNS CO BROADBAND TAX BILLS : Seeking to bolster broadband buildout in the Centennial State, COLORADO Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) signed SB 2 , which allocates $115 million in state funds toward extending high-speed broadband service to...

The Local Front - April 9 2018 | 04-05-2018

WA City Council Votes The SEATTLE City Council votes to expand the areas within the Emerald City where developers can build housing without off-street parking and permit landlords to rent their parking spaces to people who don’t live in the building...

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...

Many States Considering Bans on Pharmacy ‘Gag Clauses’ | 03-30-2018

As of March 22, at least 27 states had introduced bills this year prohibiting pharmaceutical benefit manager (PBM) or health insurer contracts that prevent pharmacists from informing customers about alternatives to medications they’ve been prescribed...

States Consider Taxing Drug Companies to End Opioid Epidemic | 03-30-2018

Last month, President Trump proposed several policies to fight the opioid crisis, including making drug dealers subject to the death penalty . A few states are advocating going after the drug makers instead and imposing a somewhat milder sentence: a tax...

The Local Front - April 2 2018 | 03-30-2018

CA City Council Adopts Ordinance The city of LOS ALAMOS, CALIFORNIA adopts an ordinance exempting itself from the Golden State’s so-called “sanctuary state” law that restricts local law enforcement’s cooperation with federal...

Half of States Use Commissions for Redistricting | 03-16-2018

Commissions, rather than legislatures, have primary responsibility for drawing state legislative and/or congressional districts in 13 states, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. In another 12 states, commissions either assist legislators...

Governors in Brief - March 19 2018 | 03-16-2018

BAKER OUTLINES $300 MILLION CLIMATE CHANGE PLAN : On the heels of several massive winter storms, MASSACHUSETTS Gov. Charlie Baker (R) outlined a plan to borrow $300 million to put toward efforts to combat climate change in communities all along the...

Business - March 19 2018 | 03-16-2018

NY Senate Signs SB 7848 The NEW YORK Senate approves SB 7848 , which would write into law a firm definition of sexual harassment that applies to both government and the private sector, ban secret settlements of harassment cases unless the accuser requested...

More State Cybersecurity Regulation Ahead for Financial Services Industry? | 03-08-2018

Developments in 2017, including the highly publicized Equifax data breach and adoption of cybersecurity requirements for insurance companies, banks and other financial institutions by New York’s Department of Financial Services, have the financial...

States Seek To Chart Their Own Course on Net Neutrality | 03-02-2018

Whether you are reading this in Olympia or Atlanta, Boston or Sacramento, the rules for how this story – or the collection of bytes of data that comprise it - travels from the Capitol Journal to your laptop, tablet or phone, are the same. ...

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...

Cuomo Gets It | 03-02-2018

Speaking of dogs, congrats to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on the addition of a new member of the family. As Newsday reports, the gov last month held a presser to introduce Captain, a 14-week old Siberian and German shepherd mix with a “little Malamute...

Govs Form Multistate Gun Task Force | 03-02-2018

Decrying a lack of federal action, several Northeastern governors have formed a multi-state partnership to address gun violence. The “States for Gun Safety” coalition is the brainchild of New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, who was joined by...

Cuomo Wants NY Social Media Spending Disclosure | 03-02-2018

Citing “a total lack of regulation” on political social media spending, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has thrown his support behind a bill to broaden the Empire State’s definition of political communication to include paid internet...

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...

Governors in Brief - February 19 2018 | 02-16-2018

ABBOTT PITCHES TIGHTER TX TEACHER SCREENING : Responding to a spike in the number of Lone Star State teachers entering into relationships with students, TEXAS Gov. Greg Abbott (R) has proposed creating a “do not hire” list for educators...

Immigration - February 19 2018 | 02-16-2018

NY Judge Issues Injunction A federal judge in NEW YORK issues an injunction ordering the Trump administration to continue the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), which defers deportation actions on unauthorized immigrants who were...

Education - February 12 2018 | 02-09-2018

NY Assembly Endorses AB 9605 The NEW YORK Assembly endorses AB 9605 , legislation that allows unauthorized immigrants to pay in-state tuition rates at Empire State colleges and universities, and be eligible for receiving tuition aid. It is the eighth...

Blockchain Bills Under Consideration in 14 states | 02-09-2018

At least 18 bills dealing with blockchain or distributed ledger technology have been introduced in 11 states so far this year, according to LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking system. Another five blockchain-related measures that were introduced...

MT, NY Govs Issue Net Neutrality Orders | 02-02-2018

Responding to the Federal Communications Commission decision to overturn net neutrality rules, Montana Gov. Steve Bullock (D) issued an executive order on Jan 22 barring any internet service provider with a government contract from blocking or charging...

Three States Challenging Federal Tax Overhaul | 02-02-2018

The Democratic governors of Connecticut, New Jersey and New York said last week they intend to file a joint lawsuit challenging the Republican tax overhaul plan signed into law last month. The governors allege that elements of the plan, particularly its...

Cuomo Seeks NY Bail Overhaul | 01-19-2018

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said he will seek to overhaul the Empire State’s bail system that requires defendants accused of nonviolent crimes to post bail in cash or stay locked up in jail. Reform advocates say the system disproportionately...

Some States Act on Gun Control | 01-19-2018

Although there appears to be broad public support for some gun control measures , federal action on any of them seems unlikely in the current political climate. “The possibility of evidence-based firearm laws has become so politically toxic...

Politics in Brief -January 22 2018 | 01-19-2018

GOP BLOCKING EFFORT TO GIVE LOCAL GOVERNMENTS CONTROL OVER CONFEDERATE MONUMENTS: Republicans who control the VIRGINIA Senate have vowed not to allow local governments in the state to decide whether to move or remove Confederate monuments. Democrats...

Environment - January 22 2018 | 01-19-2018

NJ GOvernor Vetoes SB3317 NEW JERSEY Gov. Chris Christie (R) pocket vetoes SB 3317 , which would have compelled the state to join the U.S. CA, WA, and NY Climate Alliance Climate Alliance, a coalition of states led by CALIFORNIA , WASHINGTON...

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...

Business - December 18 2017 | 12-15-2017

IN GOVERNOR SIGNS EXECUTIVE ORDER 17-31 INDIANA Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) signs Executive Order 17-31 , which grants full-time Hoosier State public workers up to 150 hours of paid leave to be with their newborn or newly adopted children. Part-time workers...

Governors in Brief - December 18 2017 | 12-15-2017

Fallin Cracks Down On Sexual Harassment : Saying “Sexual harassment is wrong and cannot be tolerated,” OKLAHOMA Gov. Mary Fallin (R) issued Executive Order 2017-41 last week, which directs state agency heads to take action to ensure workers...

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...

Energy - December 11 2017 | 12-08-2017

NY GOVERNOR SIGNS AB 6571 NEW YORK Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) signs AB 6571 , an energy bill that requires the state Public Service Commission to establish a portfolio of energy storage policies, including a long-term energy storage target. The Empire State...

Governors in Brief - December 11 2017 | 12-08-2017

EDWARDS TO CREATE LA HARASSMENT ASK FORCE : Weeks after his chief of staff resigned amidst sexual harassment allegations, LOUISIANA Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) said he would soon issue an executive order directing executive branch state agencies to review...

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...

CHIP Money Running Out in States | 12-01-2017

At least 11 states will exhaust their Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) funds before the end of the year, if Congress fails to extend federal funding for the program, according to a survey of state Medicaid officials by the Kaiser Family...

Health & Science - November 20 2017 | 11-17-2017

NY Governor Signs AB 7006 NEW YORK Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) signs AB 7006 , which adds post-traumatic stress disorder to the list of medical conditions legal to treat with marijuana. The Empire State becomes the 28 th to legalize medicinal weed to treat...

Pension Problems Worsen in Most States | 11-17-2017

As of 2016, the last year for which complete data is available, states had only 71.1 percent of the assets they needed to cover future pension payments to retirees, down from 74.5 percent in 2015. New Jersey was in the worst shape, with a pension funding...

Majority of Ballot Measures Win Passage | 11-10-2017

Voters in seven states considered a total of 22 statewide ballot measures on Nov. 7. Texas voters weighed seven of those measures, the highest number of the seven states. All seven measures passed, which isn’t too unusual in the Lone Star State...

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...

Hard to Compete | 11-03-2017

You would think an attempted hijacker who spent years in a mental institution running for mayor of New York City would draw lots of attention. As the New York Post reports , that’s certainly what Aaron Commey – who in 2000 tried to hijack...

Another Slow Year for Ballot Measures | 11-03-2017

On Nov. 7 voters in 7 states will consider a total of 22 statewide ballot measures, bringing the count for the year - with measures on the ballot last month in two states - to 27. That continues a downward trend in the number of measures on the ballot...

Sexual Harassment Prevalent Problem in Statehouses | 11-03-2017

Incidents of sexual harassment or sexual assault involving female state lawmakers, legislative staff or lobbyists have been reported recently in at least 16 states. The legislatures in all of those states have training programs or policies in place to...

Many States ‘Substantially Unprepared’ For Next Recession | 10-20-2017

With over eight years having passed since the end of the Great Recession, the third longest period of economic expansion in U.S. history, the next downturn could come at any time. But many states aren’t well prepared for it, according to a report...

Budgets In Brief - October 16 2017 | 10-13-2017

NY NEEDS $27B FOR BRIDGE REPAIRS NEW YORK state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli (D) said the state needs $27 billion to repair hundreds of locally owned bridges in the state. Nearly 13 percent of the roughly 8,500 bridges owned by local governments are...