minnesota

With Feds Distracted, States Will Have Much to Ponder in 2020 | 11-22-2019

It’s the holiday season, and if most voters are thinking about politics at all they are probably pondering more about how to get through family festivities without a major blowup over differing political philosophies than they are about next year’s...

Consumer Data Privacy Bills Introduced in Half of States in 2019 | 11-22-2019

As of mid-October, 26 states had introduced legislation this year dealing with the privacy of consumer data, according to analysis of LexisNexis State Net legislative data by the National Conference of State Legislatures. Seven of those states had enacted...

Texas, California Among Hardest Hit by Wildfires in 2018 | 11-15-2019

In 2018 Texas had the most wildfires of any state, 10,541 of them, and the sixth highest number of acres burned, at 569,811, according to data compiled by the Insurance Information Institute from the National Interagency Fire Center. California had the...

Budgets in Brief - November 18 2019 | 11-15-2019

OR Facing Big Wildfire Mitigation Costs OREGON will have to spend $4 billion now to mitigate its wildfire problems, according to a report from the Council on Wildfire Response appointed by Gov. Kate Brown (D). The report said alternatively the state...

States Weigh More Bans on Vaping | 11-08-2019

As public health officials confront an outbreak of lung injuries linked to vaping from e-cigarettes, a patchwork of state and local responses have cropped up in lieu of federal regulation. But with a developing and not yet fully understood problem...

Some Things Never Change | 10-11-2019

President Donald Trump loves him some rallies: the adoration, the blind acceptance, the leaving without paying. Wait, what? Yes, as Politico reports , since 2016 the Don of Mara Lago has stiffed at least 10 American cities out of a cumulative $840,000...

Will States Copy CA Athlete Endorsement Law? | 10-04-2019

Surrounded by a bevy of athletes including LeBron James, Diana Taurasi and Katelyn Ohashi, California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) signed legislation last week that makes the Golden State the first to allow college athletes to profit from the use of their image...

Over Half of States Consider Consumer Data Privacy Bills in 2019 | 10-04-2019

At least 27 states have considered legislation this year dealing with the privacy of consumer data, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures . Consumer data privacy bills were enacted in six of those states, while measures are still...

States Save for Inevitable Rainy Day | 09-20-2019

Many states have learned lessons from the Great Recession of 2007-09 and are better prepared for the next economic downturn, according to findings by the National Association of State Budget Officers (NASBO) and other analysts. “Rainy day...

KS Eying Healthcare Cost Controls | 09-20-2019

A special committee in Kansas is looking into ways to control the rising cost of healthcare in the state. This month the members of the House and Senate Special Committee on Financial Institutions and Insurance got a crash course on healthcare cost control...

Government Cybersecurity Bills Introduced in Nearly 3/4 of States in 2019 | 09-06-2019

At least 37 states have introduced legislation this year dealing with the cybersecurity of government agencies, 24 of which have enacted such measures, according to information from the National Conference of State Legislatures and LexisNexis State Net...

MN Facing Labor Market Slowdown | 09-06-2019

Minnesota’s labor market is in pretty good shape right now. The state’s unemployment rate is hovering around 3.4 percent. And with nearly 70 percent of working-age residents employed or looking for jobs, employers have a decent labor pool...

Excessive CEO Compensation | 08-30-2019

It’s a good time to be a CEO in America. Various studies show that CEOs of major corporations made hundreds of times what their workers earned in average pay last year. According to data compiled by the Associated Press , average CEO compensation...

Handful of States Consider Taxing Disproportionate CEO Pay | 08-30-2019

Lawmakers in at least three states have introduced legislation this year that would impose a tax on corporations that pay their chief executive officers far more than their average workers, according to Inequality.org, a project of the Washington, D.C...

Budgets in Brief - September 3 2019 | 08-30-2019

MN, NC MAY BE IN RECESSION MINNESOTA and NORTH CAROLINA may be in a recession, according to research indicating that when a state’s unemployment rate rises by at least 0.4 percentage points above its lowest rate in the preceding 12 months, there’s...

The Local Front - August 19 2019 | 08-15-2019

Portland City Council Approves The PORTLAND City Council approves charging landlords an annual $60 registration fee, with the funds designated to go to a new city agency that tracks tenant complaints about negligent landlords and enforces fair housing...

States Still Attending to Medical Balance Billing | 08-09-2019

When SNCJ reported in August 2017 on medical balance billing - the direct charging of patients by healthcare providers for services that aren’t fully covered at the providers’ rate by the patients’ insurance - nearly half of the states...

States Adding Biometrics to Data Privacy Battle | 08-02-2019

At the start of this year, many observers believed states might be lining up to duplicate California’s tough new data privacy law, set to go into effect next year. That rush didn’t quite materialize, but that doesn’t mean lawmakers completely...

Biometric Data Privacy Bills Considered in Over Half of States | 08-02-2019

At least 26 states have introduced bills this session dealing with the collection and use of biometric information, such as fingerprints, speech patterns or gait, according to data from the National Conference of State Legislatures and LexisNexis State...

Business - July 22 2019 | 07-19-2019

Minnesota Governor Signs HF 2A MINNESOTA Gov. Tim Walz (D) signs HF 2a , an omnibus jobs and economic development package that will also make it a felony in some cases for employers to withhold workers’ wages. The new law, which went into effect...

Most States Considering Drug Price Control Measures | 06-14-2019

At least 40 states have introduced legislation in 2019 aimed at reducing the cost of prescription drugs, according to LexisNexis State Net ’s legislative tracking system. Fifteen of those states have enacted such measures.

Will Arizona Lead Charge for Licensing Reciprocity? | 06-07-2019

If a hair stylist learns their craft and is licensed in Las Vegas and then moves across the state line to Arizona, does what they learned in Vegas stay in Vegas? Probably not. But their ability to work might. Or at least it used to. Presumably,...

Many States Looking at Occupational Licensing Reciprocity | 06-07-2019

At least 28 states have considered legislation this session addressing reciprocity with other states in occupational licensing, according to LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking system . Such measures have been enacted in half of those states...

Mills Signs Strict ME Data Privacy Bill | 06-07-2019

Saying that “Maine people value their privacy, online and off,” Gov. Janet Mills (D) signed one of the toughest data privacy measures in the nation last week. Under SB 275 , which Mills signed last Thursday, Pine Tree State Internet...

Over Half of States Have Passed Private-Sector Data Security Laws | 05-31-2019

As of the start of this year, at least 25 states had passed laws requiring businesses that handle personal data to implement security procedures to protect that information from unauthorized access, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures...

Business - June 3 2019 | 05-31-2019

CA Assembly Endorses AB 5 The CALIFORNIA Assembly endorses AB 5 , a bill that could require employers to officially recognize hundreds of thousands of so-called “gig” workers as employees. Under the bill, employers seeking to avoid having...

Your State Sucks, No Yours Does! | 05-17-2019

The survey has been done and unless you live in Washington, your state just doesn’t measure up. That’s the word anyway from U .S. News and World Report , which recently released its assessment of the best and worst states to live in. Based...

States Taking Action to Ensure Complete 2020 Census Count | 05-17-2019

Although the decennial census is a federal responsibility, with states having so much to gain from an accurate tally, 30 have established committees - either through legislation or executive order - to ensure their populations are fully counted, according...

Gas Tax Hikes Not Long-Term Fix for Transportation Funding | 05-10-2019

Since 2013, 31 states have raised their gas taxes, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures . Four states - Alabama, Arkansas, Ohio and Virginia - have done so this year. And Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin could be next...

Environment - May 13 2019 | 05-10-2019

WA Governor Signs SB 5116 WASHINGTON Gov. Jay Inslee (D) signs SB 5116 , a bill that establishes a mandate for Evergreen State utilities to eliminate coal as an energy source by the end of 2025, with the ultimate goal of providing carbon-free electricity...

Legislation Addressing Rent Control Pending in 10 States | 05-03-2019

As of May 1, at least 129 bills referring specifically to rent control were pending in 10 states, according to LexisNexis State Net’s legislative tracking system. The majority of those measures were introduced in New York’s Legislature. Several...

Business - April 8 2019 | 04-05-2019

TX Senate Approves SB 17 The TEXAS Senate approves SB 17 , which would allow occupational license holders whose licenses are at risk due to professional behavior or speech to cite “sincerely held religious beliefs” as cause for their actions...

A Limited Victory for Pension Reform | 03-22-2019

Pension reformers won a narrow victory this month in the California Supreme Court, but the justices dodged a decision on the “California Rule,” a restrictive provision cherished by public employee unions. In a nationally watched case...

Health & Science - March 25 2019 | 03-22-2019

US Center for Medicare and Medicaid Gives OH Approval The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services gives OHIO approval to impose work requirements for those covered by Medicaid expansion. Under those rules, recipients will need to either be...

Health & Science - March 15 2019 | 03-15-2019

FL House and Senate Approves SB 182 The FLORIDA House and Senate approve SB 182 , which would allow patients to smoke medical marijuana. It moves to Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), who pushed the measure and is expected to sign it right away (MIAMI HERALD)...

Social Policy - March 18 2019 | 03-15-2019

IA Supreme Court Upholds The IOWA Supreme Court upholds a lower court’s ruling that the Hawkeye State cannot deny Medicaid coverage for sex reassignment surgery. The court ruled that doing so would violate the state’s 2007 Civil Rights...

States Grapple with Complexities of Health Reform | 03-08-2019

It has been just over two years since President Donald Trump famously bemoaned the complexities of the American health care system, telling a meeting of the nation’s governors that “Nobody knew health care could be so complicated.” ...

Budgets in Brief - March 11 2019 | 03-08-2019

MN GOV PROPOSES $1.3B IN BORROWING MINNESOTA Gov. Tim Walz (D) has proposed borrowing nearly $1.3 billion to provide more affordable housing, fix buildings on college campuses and repair transportation infrastructure. Although parts of the governor’s...

States Claim Trump Violated U.S. Constitution | 02-22-2019

Sixteen states led by California sued President Donald Trump on President’s Day, alleging that his proclamation of a national emergency on the U.S.-Mexican border was unconstitutional. Trump proclaimed the emergency a week earlier after expressing...

Coalition of Mostly Blue States Sues Trump Over Border Wall Action | 02-22-2019

The attorneys general of 16 states have filed a federal lawsuit to block the Trump administration from using a national emergency declaration to appropriate about $6.6 billion to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. All 16 of the AGs are Democrats...

Big Tobacco Companies Shortchanging MN on Settlement Money | 02-22-2019

The makers of several cigarette brands, including Salem and Winston, have stopped paying Minnesota the money they owe it under the 1998 multistate tobacco settlement agreement. That has left the state with an estimated $15 million less per year to spend...

Budgets in Brief - February 25 2019 | 02-22-2019

CT GOV PROPOSES SODA TAX CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned Lamont (D) unveiled a budget proposal last week calling for a new 1.5 cents per ounce tax on sodas and other sugar-sweetened drinks that would generate an estimated $163 million in new revenue next fiscal...

More States Propose Paid Family Leave | 02-08-2019

When the sun went down on 2018, a half dozen states and the District of Columbia had laws in place ensuring workers could take paid time off to deal with family illnesses or the birth of a child. When the calendar closes on 2019, several more may have...

Paid Family Leave Bills Active in Many States | 02-08-2019

As of late January, legislation dealing with paid time off for workers to care for a newborn or ill family member was pending in at least 26 states, according to data from the National Conference of State Legislatures and LexisNexis State Net . Since...

Politics in Brief - January 28 2019 | 01-25-2019

RECORD NUMBER OF ETHICS COMPLAINTS IN AK ELECTIONS LAST YEAR The ARKANSAS Ethics Commission received 146 citizen complaints against candidates and others during last year’s election cycle. That number was a new record and a 45 percent increase...

More States Ready for Moderate Recession Than Not | 01-18-2019

As of September 2018, 23 states had enough rainy day and other reserve funds to weather a moderate recession, while 17 states lacked such reserves, according to Moody’s Analytics. The other 10 states had reserve balances that were within 5 percentage...

Lawmakers Grapple With Proliferation of E-Scooters | 01-11-2019

Many lawmakers left their state capitol buildings around the country after adjourning last year having never seen an e-scooter. A good number may never even have heard of such a thing. But that’s changed for many lawmakers returning for sessions...

Health & Science - December 10 2018 | 12-07-2018

MN Department of Health Announces The MINNESOTA Department of Health announces it is adding Alzheimer’s disease to the medical conditions eligible for treatment with medical marijuana in the Gopher State. The agency declined to add hepatitis...

Cybersecurity Hot Issue in Statehouses in 2018 | 11-30-2018

At least 35 states have considered bills or resolutions dealing with cybersecurity in 2018, according to analysis of LexisNexis State Net legislative data by the National Conference of State Legislatures . Twenty-two states have enacted such measures...

Election Sends Mixed Signals for Transportation Funding | 11-16-2018

There were some big wins for transportation funding in this month’s election. The biggest was California voters’ rejection of Proposition 6, a GOP-backed effort to repeal the gas tax enacted by the state’s Democrat-controlled Legislature...